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the Case Study title is �Call centres in the financial services sector�just putting you on hold…�.

After reviewing your assigned reading and the information presented in the case study, answer the

following questions:

  1. Identify and assess the key HRM issues at UniCall.
  2. Recommend and justify HRM interventions that would improve business performance.



Key HRM Issues at UniCall

Human resource professionals are often involved in making key personnel
decisions/resolutions in organizations of all sizes. These individuals are in charge of
implementing ongoing trainings of workers in different areas within companies. Since human
resource professional are always in the management of employees with various qualifications
and from various backgrounds, they often face several issues that need their attention (Marie,
2012). In relation to this, UniCall happens to be faced with several HRM issues. These issues are
related to personnel and training issues.
One of the personnel-related issues that often present significant problems to HR
professionals is the need to identify and recruit qualified and competent workers. Some of the
organization’s employees seem to be incompetent, thereby highlighting the fact the firm’s HR
has not been active in the identification and recruitment or appropriate workers (Ferndale,
Paauwe & Boselie, 2010). For instance, consumers have been noted to present complaints
concerning the aspect of rudeness on the part of the company’s staff. This rudeness is linked to
issue of inflexibility of the firm’s staff when handling complex account-related matters. In
addition, the aspect of incompetency on the part of the firm’s employees is evidenced by all of
them giving similar responses to consumers when called upon. As such, it is clear that UNiCall’s
HR department lack suitable mechanisms of identifying and hiring competent workers who can
address consumers’ problems in various ways. Moreover, UniCall’s HR department also faces
the problem of
UniCall’s HR department also faces training-related issues. Prior to the opening of
UniCall, UniBank focused on the provision of financial and personal banking services to small

businesses and individual consumers. UniBank decided to venture into the telephone banking
sector following the increasing commercial success of organizations that operate in the field of
direct line banking. As a result, UniBank opened UniCall, and redeployed some its works to the
new business, UniCall. Employees that were redeployed in UniCall lacked skills that were
required to handle issues in this business, thereby subjecting the firm to its current problems. For
instance, some of the company’s staff members face problems using the computer system. These
employees cannot manage to retrieve accurate information concerning simple enquiries. Besides,
they cannot retrieve accurate information concerning the durations taken by interrogations.
Moreover, these workers face problems handling the firm’s monitoring systems, which measure
the duration and number of various types of call. As such, the inquiries that are related to direct
debit arrangements and standing orders take an extra of 50% of the time required for them to be
completed. In addition, some of the redeployed workers are not satisfied with their job as they
argue that it is too impersonal.
It is also clear that the management of UniCall’s HR department is facing issues handling
their employees in that they seem to embrace the transactional form of leadership. This form of
leadership seems to emphasize on intense supervision and directive measures as seen in the case
of UniCall. As result, most employees in this organization are not empowered to execute even
simple operation on their own as they have to receive directives from the call center. Moreover,
the aspect of constant surveillance has led to resentment on the part of employees, which in turn
has made them develop informal ways of executing their duties (Anca-Ioana, 2013). Moreover,
the firm’s management has not established appropriate systems that can be employed in
motivating employees and recognizing workers’ skills. This deficiency has led to discontentment
on the part of younger employees who are inclined towards seeking employment in other firms

in the industry. In addition, these employees argue that the firm’s pay structure does not take
their skills into consideration, thereby subjecting the company’s HR to compensation issues.

HRM Interventions for Improvement of Business Performance
Addressing HRM issues is significant in ensuring that businesses lay robust foundations
for organizational growth. UniCall’s HR department should focus on suitable ways of addressing
the personnel, training, compensation challenges that it is facing.
The Company’s HR department should engage in active search of sources of potential
employees. This undertaking will help the HR department end the problem of incompetency on
the part of its employees. Some of the sources of potential workers are employee referrals,
recruiters, networks and associations, headhunters, and temporary agencies (Armstrong, 2009).
Moreover, the company’s HR department should involve in an active running of advertisements
on job websites and newspapers in order to attract competent workers. The firm’s HR should
also focus on developing a suitable action plan, which is aimed at attracting competent workers.
UniCall’s HR should implement reward-based programmes, which should be directed to
employees and managers. Reward-based trainings have been noted to be suitable motivators to
employees. These training should focus on equipping workers with adequate technological skills
that are required to handle the company’s computer systems and other technology-based
activities. Furthermore, the HR should also conduct a separate training on its supervisors and
managers on aspects of good leadership, which is vital in creating suitable leader-employee
relationships (Shaw, Park & Kem, 2013). This undertaking is significant in ensuring that
employees and managers/supervisor communicate in a suitable way. As a result, employees can
manage to present issues affecting them to the management, which in turn can end issues such as

informal execution of operations on the part of workers with the aim of pleasing the
The company’s HR should also ensure that its managers are trained on the aspect of
reward-based management, which will ensure that they implement a performance appraisal
system in the firm (Shaw, Park & Kem, 2013). As a result, this undertaking will help identify the
skills of all workers. Lastly, the company’s HR department should review its payment structure
to provide for benefits and allowance for certain talents.


Reference List

Anca-Ioana, M., 2013. “New Approaches of the Concepts of Human Resources, Human
Resource Management and Strategic Human Resource Management,” Annals of the
University of Oradea Economic Science, 22(1), pp. 1520-1525.
Armstrong, M 2009, Armstrong’s Handbook Of Human Resource Management Practice,
London: Kogan Page.
Ferndale, E., Paauwe, J & Boselie, P. 2010. “An Exploratory Study of Governance in the Intra-
Firm Human Resources Supply Chain,” Human Resource Management, 49(5), pp. 849-
Shaw, D., Park, T & Kem, E. 2013. “A Resource-Based Perspective on Human Capital Losses,
HRM Investments and Organizational Performance,” Strategic Management Journal,
34(5), pp. 572-589.
Marie, H. 2012. “Strategic Human Resource Management in Context: A Historical and Global
Perspective,” Academy of Management Perspectives, 26(2), pp. 6-11.

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