Q 1. What is the
core HR problem of the company?
As per the information given in the case, although there has
been an increase in service offered by Société de transport de Montréal (i.e.
STM) by more than 21% in five years, there have been some issues in terms of
evaluating and forecasting the demand and merging it with the company’s
manpower requirement. STM follows the policy of hiring as per the requirement
and training them accordingly as and when need arises. In today’s world, Human
Resource Management is a lot more than that. There is a continuous need for improving
the techniques to be implemented to survive in the market. The company is right
in forecasting the future trends and demands. The core issues are listed below
Mr. Gilles Bussières, CEO is not aware of the
various systems implemented to measure the Human resource management. He makes
a future plan for the company overlooking the current issues being faced by the
company. So as long as there is demand and growth it would be good but resource
utilization like manpower won’t be measured and properly utilized.
Mr. Gilles Bussières, CEO is a visionary man who
is good at taking rational decision which is good for the company, but what lacks
in his decision is that he is not aware of the fact that his team faces a lot
of difficulties in implementing those decisions.
Further issue with the HR of the company is the
huge number of experienced employees are getting retired. So, it will not be
easy to appoint an equally experienced and efficient manpower in place of those
who are retiring. They need to focus on how to train the new recruits
efficiently so that they can effectively take position of the ones who are
Due to the high rate of unionization (nearly 90%),
it is very difficult to control the workers trade union. Also, the new Appendix
R system that has been implemented is focusing mainly on the unionized
The staffing turnaround time in total takes
approximately eighteen weeks, which clearly shows inefficiency in the
recruiting process and is also a waste of time and energy.
Q 2. Drawing on
appropriate theoretical models, undertake an analysis of the kind of HRM system
in operation at Société de transport de
Figure 1. Michigan Model
Société de transport de Montréal uses Michigan model in
terms of its strategic HRM models as this model underlines the deployment of
HRM to achieve its objectives. Société de transport de Montréal’s HR decisions
are highly based on external forces such as:
Economic and Cultural/Social
The demand for public transport gets affected due to
increases in the price of fuel that shifts people from private to public mode
of transportation. In terms of cultural forces, age group of the population and
The government also promotes the mode of public transport
due to various reasons, one being to avoid congestion on roads and reduce air
pollution. This is also the strategic goal of STM. Also the recent
implementation of the Quebec Public Transit Policy (QPTP) by the Quebec
government is in favor of STM. So government goals support them in achieving
their goals as much as they can.
Mission and Strategy
Mr. Gilles Bussières inclines his strategic goal by
forecasting trends and demands in the external factors surrounding the company
and directs his management to work towards it. He discusses company’s mission
and strategy with the senior management. It is more inclined in a top down
approach method where the management will have to make changes in management
decisions as per the seniority level.
Clémence Beauchemin, Head of the Staffing and Workforce
Planning Division, Christian Eiffel, Section Head, Selection and Management
Information, and Stéphanie Lallier, Section Head, Staffing and Workforce
Planning comprise of the core team which is responsible for converting
company’s’ strategic goals into workable operational process. They have very
little say in deciding the company’s strategic goals. They have been pro-active
and working on solutions to get maximum output from the workforce. They also
have clear idea of the issues at hand when it comes to expansion. For example
large number of workforce is due for retirement and the initiatives taken to
measure the human resource is still not trustable. They also know that company
has invested 1.5billion in its workforce (citation)
and that tey have a huge responsibility to make sure there won’t be any issues
when company expands as per their strategic goal.
In terms of management they have a top down approach. The
core team of Human resource has done well in maintaining a good rate of
employee turnover with many employees retiring in this company. This shows how
much they enjoy working for this company. They have a productivity based
configuration. Recruitment includes screening many candidates, it is
comprehensive and uses many different sources. There is a certain level of
grading in terms of seniority but there is equity amongst peers. Jobs are upto
certain level standardized, lot of emphasis has been given on improvement of
current job performance, on the job experience. They also implement measure to
quantify the productivity and efficiency of the human resource.
Q 3. Choose one of
the topics discussed in the module (as outlined below) and evaluate how Société
de transport de Montréal Staffing and Workforce Planning Division could have
adopted to manage its staff better:
Société de transport de Montréal Staffing and Workforce
Planning Division shows lot of initiatives in terms of trying to improve their
process and work in line with the company’s goals. They developed some
performance measure as well to evaluate and improve their current situation.
Although Individualization of HRM is a good way to go about it but it will be
difficult to manage as they have a lot of employees and not enough human
resource department manpower to manage the extra added responsibility and will
create a sense biases within peers.
What they can really do on other hand is create flexible
hour practices for employees. That way employee has sense of freedom and can
manage work life balance in a better way. This would eventually lead to even
better employee turnover. They can create several batches of employees. With
analysis of employee’s performances separate them into different batches.
During peak hours Société de transport de Montréal can put high performing
employees and during non-peak hours they can put new recruits and few employees
who are due for retirement. This way the new recruits get to learn from
experienced employees on the job and it is not much burden for the employees’
who are due for retirement. Flexible work hours can not only be about the work
hours but it could also be about the work given during the time of work. For
example if an employee works 3 hours during peak hour regularly and efficiently
they can be given some concession on the total amount of work hours to be given
during off peak time. Drawing on these findings, we
wanted to see if behavioral economics could be used to encourage people to work
more flexibly, especially to commute outside of peak hours. This would have the
added benefit of reducing pressure on the transport system. (Wiryakusuma,
This way STM can make sure that the employees do not get exhausted due
to work pressure and their efficiency is not affected. During peak time like
festive season there would be a huge demand and supply for manpower could be
less. STM can also bring an idea of work from home especially for the employees
who are in the non-technical department. STM could also focus on getting part
time workers for non-technical job, as it is not easy to find part time workers
for a technical job. Here, what STM can do is that they can train their
permanent non-technical people to do some technical work for a good amount of
satisfactory money and hire part time people in place of them for the time
These are the ways by which not only will the employee have
better work life balance but will also have a sense of feeling that their
presence in the organization matters. It will reduce the redundancy of the job
task for an employee when he explores new departments. STM could also benefit
from it in case a maintenance worker is a better driver or something similar.
This will lead to more productive work done and efficient employee turnover.
Q 4. If the HR
function is to become a strategic partner within an organization, it must be
able to measure the results of its activities and programs. But how? Please identify
and develop indicators that you will use to give suggestions for the head of
the Staffing and Workforce Planning Division of the Société de transport de
The Staffing and Workforce Planning
Division need to build the key performance indicators (KPI) and dashboards
based on employees by experience, by skill set, by profile. This would help
them identify the highly expertise jobs and the time required to replace the
workforce in those categories. Individual focus needs to be given to having a
contingency plan if the workforce for such jobs retire or decides to change
jobs. Having such segmentation and profiling will help them address business
issues and recognize if the source of the challenge is human resource. (Kinni, 2016) They can diagnose
the employee population and start addressing issues like:
Where is our talent mix?
At what stage
is our talent in the overall talent life cycle?
When will our employees leave for retirement?
How will our talents’ trend in the future? (Will
they leave? Change jobs? Retire early?)
When will they formally leave?
How many will leave at the retirement time? How
many will formally retire in the next 3, 5, or 10 years?
Based on this they can explore the
co-relation between two variables and see if they can make things better by
changing either one of the variables. The findings can give insights a major
issue such as the amount of people who are due for retirement and the amount of
people STM would need for replacing them and what is the age of replacing human
resource, how much experience and expertise new human resource needs to have.
How many quality employees we would be able to acquire if we have to expand. STM
can build a model for each category of occupation, from managers and support
and maintenance staffs to bus and subway drivers and auto mechanics. The key
learning from these models was that there is no single, one-size-fits-all
People Analytics model. We needed to go local — by category of occupation,
critical roles, and experience.
The advantage of people’s
analytics is that the solution can be incurred from inside the organization
only. STM does not need to invest in external resources for greater return on
investment or meeting the expansion demands of the organization.