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Human Resource Management homework help

Human Resource Management homework help. Final Exam Case Study
Please read ALL directions below before starting your final
 Read the entire case study carefully and then respond to
all questions in each of the four scenarios.
 Develop each answer to the fullest extent possible,
including citations from outside resources, where
applicable, to support your arguments.
 Submit your assignment as a separate MS Word
document in your assignments folder. Do not type your
answers into the case study document.
 Include a Cover Page with Name, Date, and Title of
 Do not include the original question. Use the following
format: Scenario 1: question 1, etc.
 Each response should be written in complete sentences,
double-spaced and spell-checked. Use 12-point Times
New Roman font with 1-inch margins on all sides.
 Include page numbers according to APA formatting
 Include citations in APA format at the end of each answer.
 You must submit to the assignment link by the due date
(final day of class). A missing assignment will be assigned
a grade of 0.
2 © 2008 Society for Human Resource Management. Marcia R. Gibson, Ed.D.
Introduction and
Organization Overview
DRA Performance Solutions (DRA PS) was founded in 1992 with the goal to improve
human performance using multiple technology avenues.
To improve human performance, DRA PS makes recommendations about how to change
work environments to improve employee performance, motivation and morale; and
develops courseware for skill improvement.
The Training Solutions Division of DRA PS develops the courseware products.
Revenue for past year: $25 million.
Revenue for the Training Solutions Division for the past year: $10 million.
DRA PS total workforce: 650 employees, 260 of whom are employed in the Training
Solutions Division.
Case Study Background
The Training Solutions Division (TSD) of DRA PS was recently awarded a $6 million
contract to develop a training academy for BTA, a United States government
© 2008 Society for Human Resource Management. Marcia R. Gibson, Ed.D. 3
organization with highly educated personnel. The contract is for 36 months. The
academy must be up and running in three months and the first classroom course
offered at the start of the fourth month.
TSD must develop the following before the first classroom course is offered:
a. A project plan and timeline for the academy’s
development, including web site design and launch,
course development and repeat course cycles.
b. Paper-based training and educational products.
c. Web-based training and educational products.
d. Digitized video training and educational products.
e. Marketing brochures, posters and e-mail
f. Event logistics plans.
g. Delivery schedules for 15 courses.
h. Training analyses for the first and second courses.
i. Instructional design plans.
j. An instructor’s guide, participant manual and
PowerPoint presentation with a variety of
multimedia components such as graphics,
animations and videos for the first course.
k. An examination for the first course.
The training academy will be completely virtual. All academy marketing, courses and
attendee registration will occur online. In addition, the academy web site will house course
materials and records for attendee access, and an interactive forum for academy member
The contract requires TSD to develop 15 classroom-based courses that are highly
interactive and use innovative multimedia approaches. After all the courses are developed
and delivered one time, they will be repeated during the last year of the three-year project.
4 © 2008 Society for Human Resource Management. Marcia R. Gibson, Ed.D.
Project Phases
Project development will occur in two phases:
Phase 1: Create the training academy (3 months).
 Implement organizational structure.
Develop and launch web site.
Develop and implement branding for the academy.
Develop and distribute marketing materials.
Develop the first course.
Deliver the first course.
Begin development of the second course through the analysis phase.
Phase 2: Maintain academy operations, develop and implement remaining courses, and
offer repeat sessions (2 years and 9 months).
Complete development of the second course.
Deliver the second course.
 Implement development schedule for the next 13 courses.
Offer repeat courses during last year of the contract.
Continue to manage the academy, maintain the web site and market the courses.
© 2008 Society for Human Resource Management. Marcia R. Gibson, Ed.D. 5
Organizational Structure
DRA PS’s current organizational structure:
6 © 2008 Society for Human Resource Management. Marcia R. Gibson, Ed.D.
em em
© 2008 Society for Human Resource Management. Marcia R. Gibson, Ed.D. 7
The Training Solutions Division is a matrix organization* divided into the following
Project Management
 Instructional Design
Graphic Design
Document Production
* A matrix organization uses a multiple chain‐of‐command system. In a matrix organization, employees typically report to
a manager with profit or overall project responsibility and to their functional manager who is responsible for maintaining
product quality and functional performance.
Current TSD Staffing
All 260 employees in the Training Solutions Division are already assigned to projects. The
new contract will require TSD to determine how many employees they will need for each
division branch and for each project. They will need to take into account when current
projects are ending; who can be moved from those projects to the new project; and how
many new employees will be needed.
8 © 2008 Society for Human Resource Management. Marcia R. Gibson, Ed.D.
Scenario 1: Increasing Staff to
Complete the First Phase
Read the Introduction of DRA PS.
Additional Scenario Information
MRG HPI Policies and Guidelines for Assigning Employees to Projects
DRA PS is committed to maintaining a highly qualified talent pool. Therefore, all DRA
PS employees must be considered for new work opportunities before being terminated due
to lack of an available, relevant assignment.
New employees must be hired to support existing workloads. Full-time position requests
must include verification of the project assignment; a budget to support the position; and
the duration of the assignment. If project will be short in duration, term hires must be
considered or even the use of a consultant or subcontractor.
The addition of a new position requires written approval from the project manager, branch
chief, the vice president of the Training Solutions Division, the chief operating officer, the
chief financial officer and the vice president of Human Resources.
Subcontractor hiring requires written approval from the project manager, branch chief, of
the vice president of the Training Solutions Division, the vice president of Contracts, the
chief operating officer, the chief financial officer and the vice president of Human
Staff reassignments require written approval from the branch chief, the vice president of
the Training Solutions Division, the chief operating officer, the chief financial officer, the
vice president of Human Resources and the chief executive officer.
Answer the following:
1. What are some of the positions you may need to recruit? Why?
2. What are the existing recruitment policies and guidelines and what challenges may they
cause? How will you meet those challenges?
3. What is your recruitment strategy? How will you communicate it?
© 2008 Society for Human Resource Management. Marcia R. Gibson, Ed.D. 9
Scenario 2: The Effect of Firing the
Program Manager on Staffing for the
Second Phase of the Project
Read the Introduction of DRA PS.
Additional Scenario Information
Work is well underway. A Task Management Educational Plan is being written to
articulate the scope, work breakdown, processes, schedules and assignments at each
project phase. This plan must be done within the first month of the project start date. DRA
PS hired a new program manager from outside the organization to oversee the new project.
DRA PS hired her based on her college degree and years of experience in the field and
needs her to get up to speed quickly. An existing program manager who worked on the
project proposal and who has met the client is assigned the project’s principal instructional
Client’s Requirements
The client expects the program manager to conduct weekly status meetings with them;
communicate with them on a daily basis through e-mails and telephone calls; and to meet
established deadlines for product delivery. The client will conduct quality assurance
reviews immediately to keep the schedule on time.
Schedule and Workload Requirements
The team is organized into three divisions: course development, marketing, and web site
development. Each division has a lead team member. The program manager has oversight
of the entire project.
The web site must be designed and launched two months after the project start date.
A marketing plan and branding campaign must be designed before the web site can
Marketing products must be ready for distribution at the same time as the web site launch.
The first course must be delivered at the start of the fourth month from the project start
10 © 2008 Society for Human Resource Management. Marcia R. Gibson, Ed.D.
The course review and rehearsal must be ready two months after the project start date.
Analysis work for the second course must start two months after the project start date.
Program Manager’s Actions
The program manager seems friendly but does not seem to be leading the team. She holds
weekly status meetings with the client but doesn’t say anything during those meetings. She
responds only by e-mail to client communications and calls only to confirm meetings.
The client is not impressed with the program manager’s performance and notices that
the lead instructional designer is actually filling both the program manager and
instructional designer roles. One month into the project, the client mentions the
program manager’s performance to the vice president of the division. The vice
president promises to talk to the program manager and help her improve her
By the end of the second month, the analysis for the second course has started. The first
course is ready for review and rehearsal, which means all materials have been developed
and are ready for instructor review. The preliminary branding campaign was completed,
marketing materials are ready for approval, and the first version of the web site has
The vice president of the division phones the client and asks for feedback on the project
accomplishments to date and the program manager’s performance.
The client praises the progress made in such a short time but thinks it has happened in
spite of the program manager. The client informs the vice president that the program
manager missed the deadline for delivery of the Task Management Educational Plan.
When it was finally delivered, the client sent it back as unsatisfactory. Also, the client
feels that the program manager has been uncommunicative; she has not said a dozen
words in the past eight weekly progress meetings. The client is not pleased with the
program manager’s performance. At the end of the third month, DRA PS decides to
replace the program manager.
In spite of this, team leaders have made sure that the first course is ready, the web site is
launched, and the marketing plan is developed and implemented on schedule.
A new program manager is needed right away. Answer the following:
1. How would you have handled the program manager’s performance issues? Was
the right decision made to replace her? Why or why not?
2. What options exist to find a new program manager?
3. Discuss the recruitment and retention challenges you face in filling the position
4. How will you ensure that the new hire will be approved and hired as expediently
as possible? Who must you communicate with to implement your strategy?
© 2008 Society for Human Resource Management. Marcia R. Gibson, Ed.D. 11
Scenario 3: The Effect of Losing Staff
Members during a Staff Reduction
Read the Introduction of DRA PS.
Additional Scenario Information
Six months into the project, the client reviews the progress and issues a stop-work order.
The main issues identified during their review:
There were different expectations about the complexity of graphics in course development
and course materials.
There were different opinions about the level of marketing required (marketing a course
versus the entire academy, no post-course promos, etc.).
There were issues with instructors. There were instances where instructors had
rescheduled on multiple occasions or cancelled.
There were concerns about the subject matter experts (SMEs). SMEs had been hired
outside of the budgeted amount. There were also concerns about the SMEs not providing
the level of technical writing expertise required, which resulted in having to hire
additional technical writers.
DRA PS addressed some of these concerns by removing the videotaping requirement
during the analysis phase and removing the repeat courses that were going to be offered
during the final contract year.
By eliminating videotaping and repeat courses, the remaining courses to be developed and
presented were stretched over the rest of the contract (2 ½ years).
This means that instead of developing and offering the 15 courses using two teams in a
staggered fashion over two years, DRA PS must reduce staff. Currently there are three
senior instructional designers, six graphic artists, three document specialists, six
technical writers, three subject matter experts, and two editors assigned to the teams.
Your subject matter experts are consultants under contract.
You don’t want to lose your staff, but you may have no choice but to let some go.
12 © 2008 Society for Human Resource Management. Marcia R. Gibson, Ed.D.
Some of the employees resign when they hear the news. Three instructional designers quit
and the remaining three are searching for new jobs. All your technical writers have
résumés out to potential employers. Your senior graphics lead, a person you count on, has
a job offer with another organization.
What will you do to maintain a staff to meet the contractual changes and ensure a quality
product? What can you do to retain your employees and instill confidence that the program
is stable? Answer the following:
1. What are your primary retention issues? What challenges do the existing recruitment
and retention policies and guidelines create?
2. What can be done to retain existing employees? How will you motivate the current
3. How will you go about replacing the ones who have left (positions that are still
4. Create a communication plan to alleviate any further issues regarding retention and
recruitment. How will you implement your strategy?
© 2008 Society for Human Resource Management. Marcia R. Gibson, Ed.D. 13
Scenario 4: The Effect of Additional
Workload on Continuing Operations
Read the Introduction of DRA PS.
Additional Scenario Information
The issues that caused the work-stop order were satisfactorily addressed and work on the
project resumed. The client is impressed with DRA PS’s work products and with how they
addressed some difficult issues during the development and delivery of the last six or
seven courses. The client wants to add repeat courses back into the schedule and add four
new courses. The client wants to start the new courses immediately and wants them
completed within the next 12 months. The current work must continue and not be affected
by the additional work.
Current Schedule and Workload Requirements
One course is scheduled to be completed this year. Three more courses are to be developed
next year. It takes 6 months to develop each course. The three-year contract ends
September 30 next year. All of the additional work must be completed by that date.
Current staffing consists of:
One senior instructional designer
Three graphic artists
One director/videographer
One subcontracted sound technician
One media specialist
One logistics coordinator
One web programmer
Two technical writers
One subcontracted subject matter expert
One editor
One document specialist
14 © 2008 Society for Human Resource Management. Marcia R. Gibson, Ed.D.
Current Organizational Structure
The training academy is now two years old. DRA PS has developed seven courses; the
last one was the most challenging to develop and yet one of the most successful. The
success rejuvenated the team, which was struggling after the termination of the program
manager, the three-month work stoppage, a change to the workload and schedule
requirements, and the loss of co-workers. Development and delivery schedules were tight
and required a great deal of commitment and hard work. The teams’ moods have run the
gamut from devastation to euphoria. The current mood is somewhere in between.
Retention and Recruitment Issues
In the previous scenario, some staff members were looking for employment elsewhere.
Motivation issues still persist.
Additional staffing is needed because of the new work. A staffing analysis concluded that
seven teams will be necessary to accomplish the additional work. Staff additions include:
Three graphic artists
Two logistics staff
Three document specialists
Two editors
Fourteen technical writers
Seven instructional designers (these will be negotiated with the subcontractor)
Answer the following:
1. What steps would you take to hire employees for seven new teams? What methods
could be used to recruit and staff quality teams?
2. What challenges will you face in obtaining the required approvals for new employees?
3. How will you ensure a fair, equitable, and market competitive compensation and
reward strategy?
4. What will you do to quickly integrate the new teams into the existing workforce
without losing staff or product quality? How will you proactively manage any
potential performance issues?

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