Report on HRM Planning
Assessment – Report on HRM Planning
Length: 2000 words ± 10% (including executive summary, introduction, heading and subheadings, recommendations and conclusion but excluding title page, reference list and appendixes)
Reference Style: APA Style
Document type: MS Word document only, do not submit in PDF format
Description Assessment task 2 requires the writing of a Business Report. The report should be designed as a management document that can be used to implement recommended changes. It should include a comprehensive analysis of the current situation using HRM theory, models and frameworks. The report should clearly explain the various options available and analyse the consequences of these. Students are expected to engage in extensive research within the academic literature relating to human resource management. The assignment is based on a case study that describes the impact of contextual change on business activities. The purpose of the report is to identify the roles of change in organisational structure and other challenges in managing dynamic organisations. Students are expected to engage in extensive research Page 6 of 10 within the academic literature relating to organisational structure, HRM planning and downsizing analysis.
Format of the Report: The Business Report should include following sections and formatted as mentioned below:
Word count and Format: All academic writing is subject to word limits. A general rule of thumb is 10% above or below the recommended word count in accepted. That means, the Business Report should ideally be written within 2200 words. Not all sections of the Business Report attracts word count. Word count includes words in Executive Summary, Introduction, Headings and sub headings, Recommendations and Conclusions. Please check word count for the above mentioned sections before submission.
As a general rule, the following document settings are suitable for most academic reports.
1) Font type Use a simple font such as Times New Roman
2) Font size Use 12 point as the base size
3) Headings and sub headings Use 14 point Bold for Headings and 12 point Bold for sub headings
4) Margins Use 25 mm (1 inch) for all margins
5) Line spacing Use 1.5 line spacing
The writing style and layout should be consistent throughout the document. Creating a consistent and professional looking document is not difficult. Failure to do so is an indication that the writer is either careless, or places no importance on the work being undertaken.
Different Sections of the Business Report:
Title page: The title page of a report should be brief and precise. It contains the following information: the name of the report, who prepared the report, for whom the report was prepared, the nature of the report, the date the report was prepared.
Executive summary (ideally be approx. 100 words): The executive summary is a one page (or less) statement of a report’s purpose, findings and recommendations. It is more detailed than a couple of sentences, enabling the reader to see the “big picture” without getting absorbed in technicalities. According to Putnis and Petelin (1999, cited in Dwyer 2006, p. 469), it is ‘an acceptable substitute for the whole report’. Referencing is not used in the executive summary.
Table of contents: List the page numbers for headings and sub headings of the report. Introduction (ideally be approx. 100 words):
The introduction consists of two or three paragraphs in which the aims, structure and methodology of the report are outlined. It states clearly the purpose or main task of the report and what the reader can expect to obtain from it. Important background information is included, such as why the report was initiated in the first place. Please include a thesis statement that clearly mentions the main purpose of the report. The introduction may mention previous reports and research projects if the present report builds on, or challenges them.
Headings and Subheadings (ideally be approx. 1900 to 2100 words): The content of the report’s main body should be formatted into logical sections by topic. It may be appropriate to format into sections according to major topics and then outline logical sub-topics with subsections (if needed). The sub-sections may or may not be indented to make them easily identified, depending on the writer’s preference. Each section should be preceded by a heading, and each sub-section should have a subheading. Different headings and sub headings can be used to organise arguments, answers to the assessment questions. Please use headings and sub headings logically to reflect your answers to questions clearly. This section is also called main body of the assignment should present the evidence you have collected to support your arguments for the questions (with headings and sub headings). This is also the section of the report which will be analysed thoroughly by the examiner, so please prepare this section carefully. Some general guidelines also include: all figures (diagrams, pictures, drawings, charts, and so forth), and tables, should be labelled and numbered, do not repeat ideas, arguments in subsequent headings and sub headings, try to maintain equal lengths for all headings and sub headings which also ensures that you have answered all questions equally. Please note that all answers to the assessment questions should be based on arguments, answers developed through research findings (references).
Recommendations (ideally be approx. 100 words): Only include if the questions asked in the assessment require recommendations. This section can be in bullet format or descriptive.
Conclusion (ideally be approx. 100 words): The conclusion is a brief section (less than a page) in which the writer analyses the significance of the report’s findings and reiterates the main points of the report. These findings must derive logically from material presented in the report. A generalisation is then drawn from the specific findings of the research. New information is not included in the conclusion. Information in a conclusion should not be presented as dot points.
References: A Reference List is a listing of all external resources that were consulted and mentioned during research for the report, and information from which is directly referred to in the text of the report. It is strongly recommended to avoid secondary referencing in assignments. Such as, try to avoid too many mention of Cited in …….. Ricardo (2005) mentioned that ……. You are supposed to read the references before mentioning in reference list. There are a number of different styles of referencing used in academic literature. As mentioned before, please use APA referencing style for reference list.
Appendices : An appendix is a section containing large amounts of data or information pertaining to a specific topic that has been collected from an external source. It may have been collected from a reference source during preparation of the report, or have been generated from experiments or from field work. It may, for instance, be the technical description of a piece of equipment, or the calibration data of a measurement instrument.
Case Study: The Perils of Downsizing (pg. 237-238 of the textbook)
Deeply concerned about the level of angst or anxiety and uncertainty among existing staff, the Vice Chancellor tried to reassure employees about the future direction of the university. However, the Vice Chancellor is convinced that more needs to be done and has hired you to provide the director of human resources with some recommendations to improve planning for the university’s human resource needs. Based on the above mentioned case study write a report that answers all the three questions:
1. What are the external factors that are affecting the labour profile needed by the university?
2. Identify and critically discuss the ways that the HR planning function within the university could provide better information to university decision makers.
3. Given the information in this case, what are the advantages and disadvantages of the downsizing of staff numbers at the university?
NOTE: All the answers must be written with supporting academic references