International Human Resource Management Over Essay

  • Length: 14 pages
  • Sources: 14
  • Subject: Business
  • Type: Essay
  • Paper: #2712153

Excerpt from Essay :

e. Nutra Sweet). At the same time, they also had a number of failures, like when they company replaced the original formula for their soft drink with a new one. This led to a massive revolt among consumers, who did not want this product. Instead, they demanded something that could bring both of these elements together. At which point, Coke would begin utilizing the original formula, with the understanding that consumer tastes were very fickle. (Lamb 2008, pp. 255 -- 257)

This forced management to slow down on: how they are introducing new products to the market and concentrate on their core business model. During the 1990's this structure became challenging for Coke as: they had bottlers and distributors around the world (with no way to effectively collaborate on a host of different issues). This was problematic, because Pepsi was continuing to introduce products that were in demand. As they would slowly eat away at: the market share that Coke had built over many decades. (Lamb 2008, pp. 255 -- 257)

To prevent the situation from spiraling out of control, Coke began to: use collaboration and they improved supply chain management to address these challenges. This meant that the company rolled out their Coke One program. This was a new initiative where the company would work with the different bottlers to identify products that would be in demand (in a variety of markets around the world). as, they would use technology to: improve communication, collaboration and to more effectively control the supply chain. These different elements meant that bottlers began to share with the company their ideas about: how they can develop a one of a kind product. (Lamb 2008, pp. 255 -- 257)

Over the course of time, this basic strategy was successful. The reason why, is because the increased amounts of communication gave management the ability to speak directly with top executives. While, allowing everyone to: identify waste and those products that were not in demand (in select markets around the world). Once this occurred, it meant that managers and bottlers were able to identify a new soda that addresses the needs of health conscious consumers (Coke Zero). This was the first soft drink that had zero calories and it was an immediate hit with consumers around the globe. (Lamb 2008, pp. 255 -- 257)

What this is highlighting, is how Coke was changing from: being a multi-national corporation to becoming one that is transnational enterprise. as, they have: operations in nearly every single country on Earth and many different brands that are easily recognizable to consumers. During the 1980's and 1990's, the company was having trouble accepting this fact. The reason why, is because management was trying to embrace strategies of the past that had mixed amounts of success for the company. This fooled many executives into thinking that their current business model was sufficient, for addressing the various challenges in the future.

However, once globalization began to have an effect on the industry, is when other competitors began to change their focus (i.e. Pepsi). as, they quickly realized that they need to: adapt their business model to the shifts that are occurring in many markets around the world. This is the point that Pepsi was able to take market share from Coke. The reason why, is because they incorporated all of the different elements from various business models into their structure. Over the course of time, this would force Coke to use a similar kind of approach to keep with the changes that are taking place. This is significant, because it shows how multinational corporations from specific countries (such as: the United States) have been shifting their business model to become transnational entities. (Lamb 2008, pp. 255 -- 257)

What is the role of discourses in maintaining legitimacy for companies in the facilitation of their management of workforces across national and cultural divides?

One of the biggest issues that management of many transnational corporations will face is: how they should address various employment and labor problems in different regions. This can be challenging, as many areas will have their own cultural traditions and customs that they are embracing. At the same time, the underlying amounts of unemployment will vary from one region to the next. This is because, there are different levels of education and skill sets for various countries. As a result, managing the labor force will mean that all transnational organizations must embrace a strategy that can take these views into account. (Leapak 2006, pp. 48 -- 59)

Evidence of this can be seen by looking no further than, the below table which is illustrating how this changing the unemployment rate in different regions.

The Unemployment Rate for Different Areas of the World


Unemployment Rate

Middle East / North Africa


Latin America / the Caribbean




North America


Far East / Asia


(Leapak 2006, pp. 48 -- 59)

What this information is showing, is that depending upon the region of the world, the underlying levels of education and skills will vary. Those areas with the lowest average unemployment rate either: have a highly educated workforce or reduced labor costs. These different elements are important, because they are showing the challenges and opportunities that transnational corporations are facing in the future. As they must be able to find some kind of: balance between these different factors.

One possible solution that many corporations have been turning to is finding regions of the world that will allow them access to: both an educated workforce and lower labor costs. Where, they will seek out those areas that can offer them the strategic advantage of operating in select locations. as, they can be able to: produce a particular product / service in these areas and then import it to markets where demand is higher.

A good example of this can be seen in India, where a number of transnational corporations that have been establishing different manufacturing operations. The reason why, is because this area can achieve the two objectives of: lower labor costs and they have a highly educated workface. as, Indians are known for exhibiting a number of positive attributes to include: they are very career focused, most people are fluent in English, workers are open to new ideas, employees are dedicated and there are large numbers of experienced workers. These different factors are important, because they mean that a corporation's costs will decline. While, they are able to locate highly skilled workers, that are more flexible than in other areas of the world. When you put these different elements together, they are forcing variety of businesses to establish operations in the country (in order to achieve their long-term profitability objectives). (Benefits of Doing Business in India 2010)

In this aspect, management is seeking out solutions that will bridge the divide between: their need to increase their overall bottom line and remaining competitive. This means that executives will use improved communication to go to areas where they can lower their expenses as much as possible. What they are looking for are: regions that have a business friendly culture and low enough labor costs to provide significant benefits to an organization. This has caused many different entities to shift from: being strictly an MNC to a transnational organization. as, they will have their operations strategically located in certain areas of the world, that will increase their overall profits as much as possible. In many ways, one could argue that this is what has led directly to the shifts that have been taking place over the last several years. (Benefits of Doing Business in India 2010)

Assess the effectiveness of Voluntary Codes of Conduct vis-a-vis other forms of regulation (national or international) in the sphere of employment relations and labour standards.

One way that a transnational organization can be able to address the challenges that they are facing is through the use of: a voluntary code of ethics. Simply put, this is a set of policies and procedures outlining how everyone is expected to behave. In this case, because it is voluntary, means that employees are not required to follow the various standards that have been outlined. This can be problematic, as many employees will only abide by these policies at certain times. At which point, they can begin engaging in selective ethical actions (when it is convenient for them). For transnational corporations, this can lead to various issues such as: employee theft and waste. Once this begins to occur on a regular basis, it means that it is only a matter of time until the company will lose control of its operations around the world. (Bierman 2008, pp. 32 -- 39)

A good example of this can be seen with Enron. What happened was; the company was rapidly expanding into areas where they could benefit from the increased…

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