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Riordan Benchmarking Research

After reviewing the Riordan scenario, you will identify several issues that directly connect to the course concepts. Work to create a rich source from which you will develop alternative solutions for Riordan.

Identify and research companies that have faced specific issues related to those identified in the simulation and connected with the course concepts.

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Elements of an Effective Employee Relations Program
Founder Michael Riordan is convinced that his employees are well compensated even though survey shows that the company lags behind industry average. This perception disparity also holds true with the Wal-Mart Employee Healthcare program. Ed at Wal-Mart Corporate IT proclaims, "My wife developed severe kidney problems which required dialysis three times a week. I don't believe there is any other company in the world that provides the quality of benefits our company provides." (Wal Mart, 2007)

Yet the United Food and Commercial Workers (UFCW) points out that "the average worker would have to pay one fifth of his paycheck for health care coverage at Wal-Mart. On a wage of about $8 an hour and 29-32 hours of work a week, many workers must rely on state programs or family members or simply live without health insurance." (UFCW, 2007)
Riordan Manufacturing might consider returning to the basics of taking care of its customers - their internal customers. Emerge Communications is a firm that helps startups and restructuring companies by focusing on just that. Emerge believes there are three components to an effective employee relations program:

1. Knowing your internal customer. Conduct surveys to determine culture and attitude.
2. Communicating with employees. Look at formal and informal communications. Triumphs
3. Developing the program. Address orientation, training, recognition, awards, etc.
The $50,000 budgeted for outside consultation must address how Riordan can involve employees and improve relations all around. (Emerge Communications, 2007)

Career Development Planning Model
Riordan employees are concerned with lack of career information. Verizon experienced this during their third merger (Bell Atlantic to Verizon). Employees needed to know and understand what career opportunities were available in the newly founded company. Bell Atlantic was the telecomm giant on the east coast, merging with GTE who had a significant customer base on the west coast. The HR team educated all employees efficiently and effectively. Employees learned who would be eligible to apply for specific job openings and the internal and external recruitment policy. All jobs are first posted internally. (Flaherty, 2007)

Verizon has hardly a monopoly on creative career development programs. Ellen Florian Kratz said in Fortune: "When a company needs a CEO, it goes to General Electric, which mints business leaders the way West Point mints generals" (2005, p. 147). In 2005, five of the Dow 30 CEOs were former "GEers." This might seem ...

Solution Summary

Modern business requires a collective effort from all levels of employment. Riordan Manufacturing has decided to implement new practices; however, they must first address employee issues. Individual research was conducted on companies faced with many of the problems Riordan is facing using the Internet and the University Library. The benchmarking data was analyzed individually and again as a group. Suggested solutions to assist Riordan management improve employee satisfaction have been formulated and are contained herein. The end result is that Riordan must take a closer look at employee relations, compensation and benefits while better preparing key players for advancement.

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