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Human Resource Management Interview

Human resource management is part of the human resource approach, which is evidently geared to allow organizations to benefit in two significant ways: increasing in the organizations effectiveness and satisfying all of the employees needs. Organizational goals and employee needs are considered mutual and compatible in this approach, instead of simply addressing them as separate things. In other words, one need cannot be gained at the expense of the other (Human Resource Management… 6). The human resource manager in charge of the corporate office of a large brewing company, and also the manager that I interviewed, is Lori Fulmer.

Mrs. Fulmer is the benefits and risk manager of Gordon Biersch. Organization Information Dan Gordon and Dean Biersch founded their first restaurant in Palo Alto in 1988. What began as a single restaurant brewery collaboration soon turned into a chain. A little over two years ago, Trolley Barn Breweries Holding Company, which consists of many Big River Grille restaurants, Rock Bottom, A1A Ale House and Seven Bridges Bar & Grille, purchased the rights to the Gordon Biersch restaurants. The new company still retains the Gordon Biersch name.

The two founding members still run the rewery based out of Las Vegas, Nevada. The lucrative merger blends the West Coast brewing style, which uses the unique German style of brewing, with the one of a kind microbreweries of the East. This merger incorporated twenty-five restaurants and two more have opened in the past year. Gordon Biersch corporate offices are responsible for controlling the success that is obtained throughout the restaurant. The total amount of managerial staff is more or less than 225 people. This includes everyone from the CEO all the way down to the corporate staff.

The total amount of employees throughout the chain of restaurants and breweries, including the corporate offices, is somewhere around two thousand. The human resource department, including Mrs. Fulmer, has three exempt staff and two clerical workers (Gordon Biersch Webpage). Background Information Lori Fulmer attended Eastern Tennessee State University and graduated with a Bachelor of Science degree in Human Resource Management. Although Mrs. Fulmer has only been with Gordon Biersch for about six months, she has had thirteen years experience in this field of work.

She worked as another human resource manager in a major manufacturing company in Johnson City. There, Mrs. Fulmer was part of a professional association known as the Johnson City Human Resource Association. Role of Human Resources The role of the human resource department at Gordon Biersch, is to maximize human potential in a work friendly environment. If businesses are successful in acquiring this goal, employees can assure themselves of maximizing their potential, either with Gordon Biersch or any other future employment opportunity.

One of the main responsibilities of a human resource manager is the administering of any benefits offered to the employees. We have the duty of handling any safety that goes with workers comp (Fulmer). When something happens in any of the restaurants, the human resource department is held accountable. Another role that this field requires is the maintaining of employee satisfaction. This includes fringe benefits, retirement security, and counseling. Mrs. Fulmer feels that they are very successful in this aspect because of the constant interaction of the CEO with his employees.

Mrs. Fulmer believes that the largest measure of successful implementation of business strategies is attributed to the labor of the workforce. Therefore, Human Resources is the largest single component committed to acquiring the employees complete satisfaction. A happy worker makes for a hard worker (Fulmer). Dealing with the most important issue facing restaurants across the country today, is the personalization of their eating atmosphere. Human resources control a lot of what the employee desires, and in turn, creates a warm, friendly effective service the customer desires.

The importance of this task leads to another pressing issue: employee commitment. Mrs. Fulmer stated that it is very hard to maintain a committed staff in this industry. They strive to be compassionate towards their employees wants and needs by holding annual evaluations of the management itself. This allows the employee to give their input of things they believe would improve success in the years to come. The biggest and most difficult organizational problem Gordon Bierschs human resource department has been faced with in the past five years, was the merging of the two companies in 99.

They had to hurdle all the problems that arose with the policies, procedures, FMLA and ADA requirements. FMLA stands for the Family and Medical Leave Act. This act was enforced to grant family leave and medical leave under certain circumstances. The Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) gives civil rights protections to individuals with disabilities similar to those provided to individuals on the basis of race, color, sex, national origin, age, and religion. It guarantees equal opportunity for individuals with disabilities in public accommodations, employment, transportation, State and local government services, and telecommunications.

It took the human resource department a while to transfer to all the new policies and procedures. Performance Appraisals At Gordon Biersch, annual performance appraisals are given by the managers. Mrs. Fulmer believes in evaluations built on sound data and not just opinion. This enables you to promote employee growth, identify specific training needs, and guide you through advancement and compensation decisions. Gordon Biersch develops performance evaluations using a standardized audit process. First, they identify a specific work unit.

Production data must be gathered of those doing the actual work (See attached form). A framework of the audit tool is created from the information acquired, but only after feedback has been solicited. The audit will then be implemented and analyzed. The information obtained maximizes the workers performance and organizational effectiveness. The audit levels the playing field for evaluations by clearly identifying employee strengths and training needs. After the appraisal has been sent to corporate, merit increases are awarded based on the scoring.

Closing The prevailing notion that I learned from this interview is that an employee is a firms most important asset. The Human Resource department controls the well being of the employee and their importance is often underestimated. At Gordon Biersch, the HR department is one of the first places looked at if/when prices need to be cut. If ever I am in a managing position, I now know to respect the worker, first and foremost. Having a strong a committed HR department will assist in achieving this goal.

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