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IBM's workforce management initiative(WMI) - Essay Example

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It was founded in the year 1911 and is involved in the manufacture and sells computer hardware and software. It also offers…
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IBMs workforce management initiative(WMI)
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Running head: Nature and impacts of IBM’S workforce management initiative (WMI). Due Introduction International Business Machine Corporation (IBM) is an American multinational technology and consulting corporation based in New York, United States. It was founded in the year 1911 and is involved in the manufacture and sells computer hardware and software. It also offers infrastructure, hosting and consulting services in areas ranging from mainframe computers to nanotechnology. As at December 2011, IBM was ranked the third-largest publicly traded technology company in the world by market capitalization.
The IBM’s Workforce Management Initiative (WMI) is basically an approach to the human capital management which would make the company a global integrated enterprise whose operations cut across wide geographical areas and which placed various value creation processes in a worldwide arena that optimized their productivity and efficiency (Boudreau 2010).
Nature of IBM’s Work Force Management Initiative (WMI)
The idea of WMI actually was developed by the then IBM’s chief human resource officer, Randy MacDonald in 2003 and was later supported by other members of the work force. This idea required a lot of changes to be done in the management. According to the IBM’s management, one of the important moves towards the achievement of its goal was to start a business metaphor for the IBM which would be a basis for what was referred as ‘decision Science’ for talents. The ‘decision science’ is what actually the IBM envisioned. The idea here was to consider the existing employees, applicants, vendor supply and learning as alternative sources of talents supply which were actually based in different geographical areas and within different individuals (Boudreau 2010).
It had also to consider some other factors as the language used in such areas as job description; competencies and knowledge, skills and abilities. This is used in describing the resources and also defining and organizing decisions and views towards the resources. There was also need for an expertise taxonomy which would help classify the jobs by identifying things like job roles(JR) and job role skill sets (JRSS) and also identifying coming upon with common descriptors around the tasks executed by different people. By the year 2003, IBM had hundred thousands of full-time employees, over 90,000 contactors and above 40,000 applicants. These were grouped into roles such that by the year 2008, there were around 331 roles needed to define the company’s work force. Each role here represented hundreds of both applicants and contractors and over 1000 employees.
Impacts of IBM’s Work force management initiative
There are several impacts associated with the WMI and these are both positive and negative. Some of the positive impacts where that the initiative would bring a common oversight of measurements and investment and also a common supply chain design based on best practices, it would enable consistent cataloguing of its work force, optimize the labor supply tools at the country level, optimal use of work force, alternative work models and also result into an increase in the variable labor mix (Boudreau 2010)..
The negative impacts included that there was a resultant cross –border issue and remuneration as employees working outside the country had to be compensated to enjoy an equivalent of the one working in their country. Secondly, dealing with workforce on a global basis demanded comprehensive data on its workers, capabilities and needs.
The IBM’s Workforce Management Initiative is a good idea towards global management of workforce. However, it requires detailed information, computerized networking systems and good organization for its success. Anyway, there has been a great advance in its progress over the years and there is hope for its success.
Boudreau, J.W. 2010, Society for Human Resource Management: a case study. Read More
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