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Human Resource Management Practices - British Airways

University: University of East London

  • Unit No: 5
  • Level: Post Graduate/University
  • Pages: 15 / Words 3804
  • Paper Type: Assignment
  • Course Code: GSBS6040
  • Downloads: 579
Question :

 This assessment will provide appropriate questions which are like:

  1. What are the roles and responsibilities with HR functions in British Airways.
  2. Give the strategy for employee relation and also for employee engagement within their working practise.
  3. Provide all the preparatory notes with the curriculum vitae and effective interview selection criteria.
Answer :
Organization Selected : British Airways


Human resource is being regarded as the most vital asset of the organization in relation with abilities and skills. The Human capital in the form of owners, employees and personnel within the firm is liable to manage the activities and tasks of the company effectively. These tasks significantly includes hiring, recruiting, selecting, promoting, paying and managing the whole company. Thus, it can be said that HRM is the department of the firm which deals with taking care about the proper management and helps in making sure that best work practices is in place at all times. They develops and implement strategies and supports the firm in achieving competitive advantage by strategic development of highly committed employees (Boxall and Purcell, 2011). Pertaining to this, the present research report also aims to throw light on HRM and its practices in British Airways. The report is divided into two parts, the first part includes explanation of various HR functions of the company and key elements of HRM. Employment legislations, employee relations and many other internal and external factors impacting HRM will be discussed. The second part of the report will focus on application of HRM practices in British Airways including job specification, CV, selection criteria and other related aspects. 

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TASK – 1

As a Human Resource Manager of British Airways the main aim of the current task is to deal with the restructuring of HR department of the firm as a part of organizational change. Pertaining to this, the main role is to assess the effectiveness of HR function and other related concepts within the organization. 

Overview of British Airways

Talking in reference with British Airways, it is one of the largest airline company of UK which is flying over 550 destinations at appropriate time and to the best located airports of the world. The company was established in the year 1974 with the merger of BEA and BOAC. After that the firm has become largest international passenger airline in the world (British Airways, 2018). Although the firm is holding a leading position in the market, they have faced many difficulties and tough times over the years. In seventies, the performance of British Airways was quite disappointing and in 1980’s, they have recorded high amount of loss. However, the firm was able to overcome all the difficulties by bringing modifications in their Human Resource Management practices.

Purpose and key roles & responsibilities of HR function in British Airways 

HRM is defined as a process through which development, management and formulation of plans and policies in relation with employees is done successfully. In British Airways, the main emphasis of this department is on utilizing the available resources effectively so that effective outcomes can be reaped out. Further, it also helps in development as well as maintenance of healthy relationships between the employer and the workforce (Martin, 2013). Therefore, it can be said that the main purpose of human resource management in British Airways is making improvement in the human capital of the firm, ensuring positive and healthy relationships amid workers, development of every employee through proper training, motivating, encouraging towards effective work performance and leading them towards the path of success and growth. In British Airways, the HRM is also responsible for hiring and recruiting skilful workers at right time so that organizational goals can be achieved. Explanation of HR functions in British Airways is being done below:

  • HR Planning – This is very crucial function, as with this British Airways can have the right people at right time and place. Since, the firm is related with service industry, numerous of operations takes place on a daily basis which requires large number of skills. Thus, with this function, need of the workforce can be analyzed in advance and performance of the company will not be effected (Hendry, 2000).
  • Recruitment and selection – With this function, the HR of British Airways brings forth efficient employees within the firm. The success of the firm is majorly dependent on the types of workers being employed. The firm takes into consideration various methods to recruit right people which in turn helps in accomplishing the goals of the company. 
  • Training and Development – This is also being regarded as one of the important functions of HR of British Airways. Time to time, the managers organizes training and development events for the workers so that their abilities and skills can be enhanced. With this, the firm ensures that their goals are achieved successfully, as employee’s level of performance and productivity will increase (Costen and Salazar, 2012).
  • Performance management – In order to monitor as well as review the performance of the workforce, performance management is considered as an important human resource function. The current as well as future activities of human capital is monitored and those with higher work levels are being recognized by the company. Any corrective actions need to be done in performance of the workers is also done within this function.

Assessing the approaches of HRM in British Airways

There are numerous approaches of human resource management such as workforce planning, performance management, reward system, training and development, recruitment and selection etc. being adopted by British Airways for the successful operations of the activities and effective management of Human asset so that they can help in the achievement of firm’s objectives (Young, 2009). Assessment of these approaches is as follows:

  • Workforce planning – Within British Airways, the process of HRM begins with workforce planning. In this method, the requirements as well as need of the workers for carrying out the operations is identified. After the need of individuals is being determined, the recruitment process is initiated. British Airways involves different steps in the planning process such as job analysis, analysis of the strength and weaknesses of current workers, estimating the demand and supply, supply forecasting and finally, matching the demand and supply along with preparation of action plan.
  • Training and development – British Airways invest lot in training and development of their employees. This is because of the fact that they want to improve the image of the organization of “Helpfulness” (Harrison, 2000). Time to time, firm carries out research and they find that sometimes customers are not satisfied with the unfriendly behavior of staff members and this, they have implemented various training programs that helps in bringing total change in value as well as attitude all across the company especially in staff members. These programs are “Customer First Campaign”, “Putting People First”, “Managing People first” etc. other than this, they have many development programs as well like ‘Top Flight’ program which offers series of academies so as to allow the employees to progress in their existing position. 
  • Recruitment and selection – The human resource department of British Airways want to recruit individuals on the basis of intellectual capacity and analytical skills rather than focusing only towards management experience. The recruitment process in the firm is very crucial because of the level of expertise being required. The very first stage includes filling of the application form and screening of the applicants is carried out based on the criteria for a particular job role (Boxall, 2009). The selected candidates are invited for the assessment day which includes group exercise, role play, psychometric tests, reasoning, situation judgment and interview. Those who clear the above test and interview are selected and offer is generated. 
  • Performance management and reward system – Every employee of British Airways, have appraisal two times in a year. Both Qualitative and quantitative aspects of the job performance is done through performance appraisal. Further, sub-ordinates of the company are also provided reward on the basis of their performance level. The human resource manager of the company monitors and review the work activity of each and every worker and rewards are then given to them on the basis of the results. Other than this, they have several working schemes which motivates them to work hard and so that they can earn more (Storey, 2007).

Therefore, from the above analysis it can be concluded that British Airways has taken into consideration different approaches in Human resource practices so as to determine, retain, train and select the best qualified people in the firm. All these methods are effective as they help in improving the performance of the employees and lead the firm to the path of glory.

Effectiveness of employee relations and employee engagement and comments on the adoption of flexible organisation, working practice and ‘employer of choice’

Importance of employee relationand employee engagement-

The relationship between the employees within British Airways is quite good and healthy. Employee relation is the body of work related with the maintenance of employee and employer relationship that helps in satisfactory level of production, profit, motivation and morale. As per Heathfield, it is vital on the part of organizations to maximize the strengths of their employees otherwise they will be transfer somewhere else. It is responsibility of the HR of British Airways to make their workers feel like they are being valued and quite useful in the firm so that they gather self-worth and confidence (Armstrong, 2003). Employees of British Airways are treated equally and respect is given so as to develop positive attitude within the workers. Further team work is very significant as it enable the firm to accomplish things which is not possible to attain individually.

The company also certifies that their managers and leaders are quite flexible and changes as per the demand occurs. They support the staff members in simplifying their work process and offer equal opportunities to attain the value of respect. In addition to this, training and development methods are being used to maximize the potential of the staff members. Learning facilities and different types of programs such as rewards, employee share scheme, bonuses, team building programs, private healthcare schemes etc. are also available to engage the workers (Govaerts and, 2013). 

Flexible organizations and flexible work practices-

British Airways is continuously engaged in providing flexible working environment to its workers so that they feel motivated and work efficiently to fulfil the goals of the firm. Various practices are being offered by British Airways such as part time working, flexible hours, zero-hours contract, annualized hours, term-time working, V-time working etc. These facilities are vital so that employees feel satisfied and think that organization cares about their workers. Even the managers and leaders of the company are flexible and changes their way of leading the firm according to the demand of the situation (Half, 2017). This type of work culture and practices makes the employees satisfied and they work even more to accomplish the overall goals. Both these practices are being used by the firm for employee relation and employee engagement. 

Employer of choice-

Employer of choice strategy are nowadays adopted by many firms along with British Airways. With these strategy in place, they are offering diverse benefits to the staff members that further support in attracting and retaining them. Employer of choice strategy is more related with image than substance. For garbing the position of employer of choice, the company is needed to develop their business and operations in such a manner that attracts people because of the great place to work being offered to them. The act of British Airways in regards with encouraging and motivating staff, benefits and rewards, timely performance appraisals and many more helps in persuading the employees to vote for them and make them employer of choice (Benedict, 2008).

Related Service: Human Resources Management

Key areas of employment legislation

Each and every business has some or the other sort of employment legislation and laws. It is quite vast area that covers the labour laws, legal rights and duties of employers as well as employees. In British Airways, the employment standards legislation provide some minimum standards the firm is free to establish practices and strategies for the enhancing the corporate culture. Further, the legislation system of British Airways has vital influence on the human resource management decision making because it is concerned with the rights and accountabilities of the employees. Key elements of employment legislation are being defined underneath:

  • Discrimination and equality act 2010 – This act signifies that each and every employee within the firm should not be discriminated in terms of disability, sex, gender, race, caste etc. British Airways also offer equal opportunities to their workers depending upon their performance and job positions (Cassani and Kemp, 2003). Timely, promotions, rewards, and various other benefits are offered irrespective of their culture, caste, nationality and religion.
  • Working time regulation and EU regulations – This is also considered as important employment legislation which is being established by the government of UK for extending work timing measures in full as well as non-mobile workers on roads, inland, airways, sea and waterways. Each and every worker working in British Airways enjoys time regulation being specified in time regulation act 1998 in regards with weekly rest, minimum rest breaks, average working hours in a week, monthly breaks etc. All these regulations are being adhered by the company effectively.
  • Work and Families Act 2006 – Under this law, each and every worker has a right to take maternity leave and adoption leave as and when required. Further it also entails about flexible working arrangement for caring adult member in the family. British Airways also offer flexible working environment and practices considering this act (Francesco and Gold, 2008). 
  • Health and safety act 1974 – This act is being formed to create facility in regards with safety, health and welfare of individual at workplace. Furthermore, it also supports the employees by offering protection against different types of risk connected with health and safety such as use of dangerous materials, possession of dangerous substances, unlawful acquisitions, control of particular emission into environment and many more. Related to this, British Airways is also providing healthy as well as good working atmosphere to all their employees. In addition to this, numerous welfare activities are being undertaken in their policies and functioning so that employees are satisfied and feel like working in such type of organization (Rothwell and Kazanas, 2003). 


TASK – 2

As an intern in the Human Resource department of British Airways, the main task here is to take part in testing the new recruitment and selection process of the firm. The main role here is to design a job specification of a specified job position and take part in interview simulation.

Job specification for HR Assistant in British Airways

Needed qualification

Personal feature

Experience level

For HR assistant in British Airways, the candidate is required to have Bachelor’s degree in the field of management and master degree in the areas of HR, leadership or management from reputed university

Good communication and inter-personal skills is must among with efficient leadership qualities. He or she must be good at solving people related problems and should possess time management skills and must be good organiser (Byars and Rue, 2003)

2 or more than two years of experience in the human resource filed is essentially required

Curriculum Vitae (CV)

Career objective-

I am very focused and professional individual who wants to deliver human resource administrative support services to work colleagues and job applicants. With an extensive experience of work in HR environment I am very goal-oriented and have a passion for continuous improvement. I am looking for a company who can offer suitable position where I can apply my knowledge, skills and experience and add value to my organization. 

Experience level-

I worked as an HR assistant in Visit Britain Company for two years where I was responsible for different set of tasks like processing applications, pre-employment checks, maintaining employee relations many others.

Roles and Responsibilities undertaken:

  • Formulating, assessing and evaluating employee’s and their performance
  • Creating programs considering the special needs of the employees
  • Workforce performance and progress evaluation
  • Handling all the records of employees
  • Ensuring awareness of safety procedures to employees before initiation of their work
  • Education and qualification level
  • Diploma in human resource from Harvard University with A grades
  • B.Sc. graduated from Harvard University with A grades
  • Computer proficiency
  • Knowledge of MS Excel, word and access and Internet Applications
  • Lotus notes, MP2
  • Analytical and typing skills

Personal Details-

Date of Birth: 15th October 1985

Interests: Reading journals, books, magazines and travelling

Languages known: English, German, Spanish

Preparatory notes for interviews and Interview selection criteria

Interview is being defined as a technique wherein the interviewer mainly focus on knowledge, past experience, skills, behaviour and abilities of the candidates by asking several questions. Before taking interview, the interviewers are required to make prior arrangements. The interviewer is required to prepare interview questions beforehand by making use of job description so that he can judge regarding which skills are most required. Make notes regarding the applicant’s key skills and past experience. Next is planning about time agenda and interview schedule (Marchington and Wilkinson, 2002).

Selection criteria and justified decision of candidate selected

It is vital on the part of managers to determine selection criteria so as to select the best applicant from the pool of applicants and are being defined beneath:

  • Educational background should be related to Human Resource
  • Minimum one year of experience
  • Efficient in communication and must knowledge about key aspects of HR
  • Skills in regards with language and abilities (Warhurst, 2005)
  • Between age group 25-35 year

If all these criteria is fulfilled by the candidate and his or her behaviour is apt for British Airways than the company will select the applicant for the needed vacant position. The selected candidate is welcomed on board by generating and giving him or her offer letter. 

A Job offer

A job offer is being sent to the selected candidate generally by emails or in written depending upon the policies of the company. It is considered as an important letter that confirms the details the offer of employment and typically encompasses reporting structure, job description, job title, salary, benefits, date of joining and termination conditions (Desimone and, 2002). A job offer is being described below:

From To, XXX

HR Manager Heathrow Avenue

British Airways

Dear Mr XXX

We are pleased to confirm that your have been selected to work for British Airways as HR assistant:

Your job duties will include:

  • Offering the customer comfort and safety
  • Managing security emergency situations
  • Excellent customer service etc.

Contract includes:

Work hours: 9:00 AM to 17:00 PM

Salary: Basic Salary: as per cabin crew position (xxx at xx rate per hour)

Vacation: 2 days per week

Benefits: dental care, health care and group insurance

We are delighted to send you the offer letter and you can join the board from 26th June 2019

We look forward to join out firm



Process of evaluation

Seeking help from this process, British Airways will get many benefits because with this, they will be able to select best and most suited candidate from the pool of applicants. Furthermore, the complete process will also offer help to the company by decreasing their costs being involved in the recruitment and selection process, as there will be less employee turnover. This pertains to the fact that effective and skilful workers will be chosen by the interviewer and least suitable candidate are removed out of the process. Moreover, with this method those who are eligible will be selected and HR managers of British Airways will save lot of their time and money in searching for efficient workforce (Smith, 2002).

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Thus, it can be said that the present research report has significantly drawn a line in defining regarding different terms as well as aspects of human resource management. The report has also focused on impact of HRM over the business of British Airways and efficiently taken out different activities of HR and their prime role in any operation being undertaken by the firm. It was found in the report that it is the human resource management that has led to the development of brand “British Airways”.


  • Armstrong, M., 2003. A Handbook of Human Resource Management. 9thed. Wales: Aberystwyth.
  • Benedict, A., 2008. HR’s Evolving Role in Organizations and Its Impact on Business Strategy.
  • Boxall, P. and Purcell, J., 2011. Strategy and human resource management. Palgrave Macmillan.
  • Boxall, P., 2009. The Strategic HRM Debate and the Resource-Based View of the Firm. Cengage learning.
  • Byars, L.L. and Rue, L.W., 2003. Human resource management. NY: McGraw-Hill.
  • Cassani, B. and Kemp, K., 2003. Travel: An Airline Adventure. London: Time Warner.
  • Costen, W.M. and Salazar, J., 2012. The impact of training and development on employee job satisfaction, loyalty, and intent to stay in the lodging industry. Journal of Human Resources in Hospitality & Tourism, 10(3), pp.273-284.
  • Desimone, R.L., Werner, J.M. and Harris, D.M., 2002. Human Resource Development. 3rded. Orlando: Harcourt College Publishers.
  • Francesco, A.M. and Gold, B.A., 2008. International Organizational Behaviour. London: Prentice Hall Inc.
  • Govaerts, N., Kyndt, E., Dochy, F. and Baert, H., 2013. Influence of learning and working climate on the retention of talented employees. Journal of Workplace Learning, 23(1), pp.35-55.
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