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Levels of Hierarchy: are the layers of authority within an organisation.
Spans of control: A span of control is the number of workers directly supervised by a more senior employee.
Whereas an organisation chart shows how employees fit into the business, a job description gives details about what is expected of the individual employee. Job applicants normally receive a job description when they apply for a position with a business. A job description usually consists of:
1) The title of the job (e.g. sales manager).
2) The tasks to be completed as part of the job (e.g. having to write monthly sales reports, in the case of a sales manager).
3) The responsibilities of the job (e.g. a sales manager might be responsible for managing a team of sales representatives).
4) Information on working conditions linked to the job, such as rates of pay, hours to be worked and holidays.
5) A description of how the job fits into the organisational structure.
UK businesses have employed increasing number of part-time and temporary employees. They have also used self-employed workers, who hire out their skills to firms but are their own bosses. At the same time, businesses have made use of more flexible contracts of employment, in some cases with annualised hours (hours worked in a year) included instead of hours per week. High proportions of these types of employees in businesses are called flexible workforces.
In recent years, a number of trends have emerged in the UK’s workforce, including:
More temporary workers: The number of workers on temporary contracts has risen since the early 1980’s although in the last few years it has levelled out. In 2000, nearly two million workers were on temporary contracts.
Use of annualised hours: Many businesses face an uneven pattern of work over the year. For example, farms are very busy in the summer months harvesting crops, but are quiet in the winter. Without annualised hours, farmers might pay overtime in the summer and not have enough work to keep employees busy during the winter months.
More part-time working: The number of employees within the UK who work part-time has increased each year. By 200, more than one-quarter of all employees – nearly seven million people – were part-time workers.
Self-Employment: The number of self-employed has fallen recently, but 2.5 million people still work for themselves.
Hiring consultants: Many businesses have replaced full-time employees with consultants, who work for a business for a short time. Consultants are usually very highly skilled, for example IT experts.
Use of contractors: Many businesses employ other firms to carry out particular duties. The exact arrangements are set out in a contract between the businesses involved. It is common, for example, to hire contract staff for cleaning, rather than use permanent full-time employees.
Managers: Managers play a vital role in businesses;
1) They have responsibility for an aspect of the business’s work under the guidance from the director. For example, a manager might take responsibility for employee training, under guidance from the director of human resources.
2) Managers plan activities, look after teams of employees, manage finances and attempt to meet targets set by the directors of the business.
3) Managers’ jobs are normally secure, as they usually have permanent full-time contracts.
Managers often have a professional qualification in an area such as accountancy or marketing. They need to be good communicators, able to use IT, use time effectively and control finances. Managers’ pay varies according to the seniority of the position, but it can be over ï¿½100,000 a year. Other benefits that are common are company cars and private health insurance.
Supervisors: In some businesses supervisors are also called team leaders. Supervisors provide a link between operatives and managers. They;
1) Monitor work of junior employees.
2) Ensure that production and quality targets set by managers are met whenever possible.
3) Advise managers of problems or difficulties in the work of the business.
In some businesses supervisors have been given responsibility for some of the roles previously carried out by managers. For instance, they may recruit new employees or lead training sessions. The pay of supervisors depends on how much authority they have, but they are normally paid more than operatives.
Operatives: The most junior employees in the business are the operatives. In a factory, they would work on the production line; in a shop they would be the sales assistants. Their role in a business is as follows;
1) They are normally only responsible for their own work.
2) They usually carry out routine tasks, though some employers do provide more varied and interesting work.
3) They often have little job security. Many are employed on temporary contracts, and when the contract runs out they may find themselves unemployed. Others find they are no longer needed because their jobs have been replaced by machinery.
4) In a minority of businesses, they are allowed to take decisions such as stopping the production line to remove poor-quality products.
Many operatives are relatively unskilled. Sales assistants may have some training and qualifications in customer service, but some factory workers on production lines have no qualifications. Because of this, pay rates for operatives are normally low.|
Support Staff: The support staff provides Specialist skills in businesses. They may offer expertise in the areas of security or information technology or provide secretarial skills. Support staff can operate at various levels in the organisation;
1) They offer advice and assistance in their specialist areas to employees. Thus, IT staff may recommend new software or hardware, provide training and sort out computer problems.
2) Some support staff are managers looking after teams of people are in charge on finances; others carry out routine tasks.
3) Senior support staff take important decisions, such as spending on computer systems.
There are two working arrangements at Richer sounds, one is for permanent and temporary colleagues and the other is for full-time and part-time colleagues. Information on these working arrangements follow;
Working arrangements for permanent and temporary colleagues: The vast majority of their colleagues are employed permanently. They are all issued with a written contract of employment.
At Christmas Richer S0unds employ greeters in their stores to greet and assist customers at busy times. Their greeters are temporary colleagues who work for a short time and their work ends after the sale period. Many are students at college or university who work for them during their Christmas holidays. Richer Sounds do not issue written contracts to temporary colleagues, neither do we keep personnel records for them. However, they do receive a mini-welcome pack, which explains how Richer Sounds operates.
Working arrangements for full-time and part-time colleagues: Most of thei colleagues work full time, although their hours may vary. A normal working week for store colleagues is 42.5 hours although in some of their stores which are open from 12 noon – 7 pm, colleagues may work fewer hours. Departmental support colleagues work 40 hours a week.
Richer Sounds don’t use the term ‘part-time’. Colleagues who don’t work the full number of hours are called career key timers. They have access to all the same training opportunities and benefits as the full-time colleagues.