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Penn Foster Exam Essay

I. Purpose for this investigation is to pin-point problems within the Roanoke branch of Phoenix Advertising which have led to the recent resignations of an art director and an account executive, increasing client complaints about quality of work, productivity and demoralization of employees within that branch. II. Site visit to Roanoke branch was performed in order to investigate issues. A. Preformed one-on-one employee interviews in order understand the reasons behind declining morale within the branch. 1. Conducted interviews with four out of six employees from the Accounts Management department. 2. Interviewed the general manager of Roanoke branch.

3. Had a group meeting with entire Creative Services department. B. Observed work environment to get a feel for how employees interact with one another and understand workflow within the office. C. Reviewed past year of business reports.

D. Reviewed policy and procedure manual.

1. Polices for new client accounts were reviewed and updated. 2. Overtime compensation for salaried employees was not addressed in the company’s policy manual. E. Interviewed clients, both satisfied and dissatisfied.

1. Conducted phone surveys with dissatisfied clients who had recently closed their accounts with Roanoke branch. 2. Mailed out satisfaction surveys to current client list of Roanoke branch. III. Main causes for problems plaguing the Roanoke branch are the unlimited number of new client projects, short staffing and thus overworked employees, lack of communication between departments, and declining employee job satisfaction. A. One-on-one interviews with employees revealed a branch wide dissatisfaction with workloads and uncompensated overtime hours.

1. The policy for accepting new projects does not take into account current workloads. 2. There is no policy for overtime compensation for salaried employees. 3. Understaffing and resignations within the branch have caused difficulties for remaining employees. B. Lack of communication between the Creative Services department and Accounts Management department has caused tension and an unwillingness to work together. 1. Creative work is being altered without consultation.

2. Location of Creative Services department in relation to Accounts Management department hinders good communication. C. Creative Services department is short staffed since the recent resignation of the head art director. D. Increasing client complaints are a direct result of poor quality of work.

IV. Shifting the focus of Roanoke branch to increasing employee morale, encouraging interdepartmental communication, and decreasing workloads of each department will resolve problems within the branch. A. Add a salaried employee overtime compensation plan to Phoenix Advertising’s policy manual to be implemented throughout the entire company. B. Revise policy for accepting new client projects.

1. Work should be assigned according to employee capacity. 2. Realistic project deadlines need to be set at the beginning of each client project. C. New employees should be hired immediately to fill the recently vacated positions within the branch. D. Location of Creative Services department should be changed in order to facilitate better communication with art directors. E. Require the use of interoffice email or text messaging to facilitate communications between departments.

DATE: May 2, 2012

TO: Gregory S. Forest

FROM: Angela Bennett

SUBJECT:Investigation and Recommended Solutions for Roanoke Branch

Purpose

Investigate and pin-point problems within the Roanoke branch of Phoenix Advertising which have led to the recent resignations of an art director and an account executive, increasing client complaints, decreasing productivity and demoralization of employees within that branch.

Identity of Facility

Roanoke branch of Phoenix Advertising

Description of Investigation

On visiting the site over a period of five workdays, I performed one-on-one employee interviews, observed the work environment, reviewed the past year’s business reports and the policy and procedure manual, and surveyed clients of the Roanoke branch. I spent the entire first day of my visit observing the work environment and trying to get a feel for the workflow and how employees interact within their departments and between other departments. Over the next two days, I interviewed four of the employees from the Accounts Management department on an individual basis in order to ascertain their thoughts as to why the branch is failing, as well as holding a group meeting with the entire Creative Services department.

I met with Martha Johnson, General Manager of the branch, and we reviewed the last 12 months of business reports. We also reviewed the policy and procedure manual in regards to new client accounts and overtime compensation for salaried employees. During the last two days of my visit, I was able to conduct telephone interviews with both satisfied and dissatisfied clients of the Roanoke branch. I also mailed out satisfaction surveys to the remainder of the client list that I was unable to contact by telephone. A copy of that survey is attached to this report.

Results

My investigation identified the following problems:

1. The policy for accepting new projects does not take into account current workloads and deadlines.

2. There is no policy for overtime compensation of salaried employees.

3. Understaffing and resignations within the branch have caused difficulties for remaining employees.

4. Lack of communication between the Creative Services departments and Accounts Management department has caused tension and an unwillingness to work together.

5. The location of the Creative Services department in relation to the Accounts Management department further hinders good communication.

6. Quality of work produced is poor and client complaints are increasing.

Conclusions

In brief, the accepting unlimited numbers of new client accounts has not taken into account projects already in process and deadlines for completion are unrealistic. Short staffing in various departments has brought to light the lack of overtime compensation for salaried employees who now are required work long hours just to keep up with their workloads. Communication between the Creative Services department and the Account Management department is non-existent and is causing tension in the workplace. All of this has led to poor quality of work and customers are becoming increasingly dissatisfied, and we are losing accounts to our local competitors.

Recommendations

1. Add a salaried employee overtime compensation plan to Phoenix Advertising’s policy manual and implement it companywide.

2. Revise policy for accepting new client projects to include assigning work according to employee capacity and set realistic project deadlines at the beginning of each project.

3. Immediately hire new employees or transfer employees from other branches of the company to fill the vacant positions within the Roanoke branch.

4. Relocate the Creative Services department closer to the Accounts Management department in order to facilitate better communication and workflow between the departments.

5. Require the use of interoffice email or text messaging to increase communication between the departments.


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