November 01, 2008

Human Resource Management Lesson 8 Exercise


IBM has been applying family friends working practices for long time, some of them are listed below:

  • Flexible timetable

  • Tele-workers

  • Part time workers

  • IT facilities to work at home or in client location

  • Diversity police

The application of this practices impacts on key aspects of human resources management such as the recruitment, retention, employee motivation, absenteeism, labor utilization or employee satisfaction. For instance IBM could look more attractive because these polices than other company offering a higher pay for a person who is searching work.

How much cost family friendly working practices? It’s difficult to quantify it….but it’s a practice applied by IBM for many years, so I tend to say that the benefits for the company are higher than the cost, in other words there is a positive business case, there are positive financial results compensating the investments (for instance in the technology needed to implement the practices, internet at home and others) .I personally think that for example the possibility of working at home sometimes results in employees working hard both at the office and also at home in the same day, therefore the IBM family friend working practices generates money for IBM. On top of this, the application of family friend working practices is in line with the IBM corporate social responsibility.

My conclusion is that the application of IBM & family friendly working practices brings benefits for both parties, employees can face changes in their personal life adapting “how” to work without loosing their career paths and IBM can retain employees and in most cases obtain the same of higher productivity obtained via family friendly working practices


  • Study notes. Warwick University. Human Resource Management.

  • Marchington, M. and Wilkinson, A. (2005) Human Resource Management at Work (3rd edn). London: CIPD

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