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For this assignment you will introduce, identify key issues, explain the analysis process, discuss the results, and summarize a case related to human performance technology applied to supermarkets in India in the form of a proposal.  In addition to the items above you are to make suggestions to improve the methods used in the case as well as provide your own conclusion.

The proposal should be twelve to fifteen (12-15) page paper, excluding the title page and references.  The proposal (as Microsoft Word files) must be submitted with at least


 Format: 12 fonts, Time New Roman, Double-Space, and 1’ margin

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 Format: APA 6th edition Format with 3 references including attached case study

 Required Project Components

1) Title Page:

2) Table of Contents

3) Why Your Team Select this Case?

4) Case Introduction

5) Problems/Issues in the Case

6) Explanation of Analysis Process

7) Results of the Case

8) Synthesis/Summary of the Case

9) What are Your Suggestions to Improve the Process/Methods/Approaches Used in the Case?

10) Your Team Conclusion (By reviewing and analyzing the case you select, specific opinion and thought about the case, regardless of the conclusion of the case which authors have written. I would like to hear your voice from in your conclusion)

Requires a separate TURNITIN REPORT with LESS THAN 20% Similarity

Proposal Requires TURNITIN REPORT
30 Performance Improvement, vol. 53, no. 10, November/December 2014 ©2014 International Society for Performance Improvement Published online in Wiley Online Library ( • DOI: 10.1002/pfi.21446 HUMAN PERFORMANCE TECHNOLOGY APPLIED TO SUPERMARKETS IN INDIA Subbian Hemalatha , PhD Rengan Venkatram , PhD Rudramoorthy Krishnaveni , PhD The International Society for Performance Improvement human performance technology model was applied in four supermarkets of a well-known retail firm in India. An organizational environment model was used for a cause analysis. The fishbone (i.e., ca use-and-effect) diagram was used to express the basis of poor sales performance. Both customers and employees were dissatisfied with the stores. It was determined that poor inventory management, long approval periods, and frequent employee turnover were the reasons for poor sales performance in the supermarkets. HUMAN PERFORMANCE TECHNOLOGY (HPT) is a process that solves performance problems. Practitioners use different types of models such as diagnostic, pro- cess, and holistic (Wilmoth, Prigmore, & Bray, 2002 ). Diagnostic models tell us where HPT can be applied. Process models guide us as we apply the process. Holistic models are nonsequential and integrate diagnosis and processes. The International Society of Performance Improvement (ISPI) HPT model is a process model that is widely used for performance improvement in different types of organizations. The model has been used suc- cessfully for performance problems in military settings (Bolin, 2007 ) and by small businesses (McElyea & Van Tiem, 2008 ), the Royal Canadian Mounted Police (Pullen & Gallant 2009 ), information technology service firms (Ahn, Kang, Park, & Rim, 2009 ), and more. This article addresses an effort to apply the ISPI HPT model to a supermarket business in India in order to identify reasons for poor sales performance. PERFORMANCE PROBLEM The focus was a partial chain of supermarket stores of a well-known, private limited company with numer- ous retail locations throughout India. The name of the company is not disclosed for reasons of confidential- ity. The company is a conglomerate of different busi- nesses, and the retail sector is one among them. When contacted for the study, the head of human resources for the supermarket division of the company agreed to pursue the study in the city of Coimbatore. As per the recommendation of the deputy manager in Coimbatore, the study was undertaken in four supermarkets that are located in different parts of Coimbatore. Considered the Manchester of South India, the city is located in the state of Tamil Nadu. The four selected supermarkets were showing poor sales performance, as confirmed by company records. The ISPI HPT model was applied to address the per- formance problems of the four supermarkets. (In this discussion, each supermarket shall also be referred to as a store.) A single retail firm manages the four stores, and the ISPI HPT model was applied to all of them. Performance analysis and cause analysis was carried out, and interventions were designed for the four stores. The data were collected from the customers who frequented the stores, as well as from the employees. The operations of the stores were observed keenly, and detailed observa- tion notes were recorded. An organizational environment model was specially designed for use in the study to help identify the causes of poor performance. A fishbone dia- gram (i.e., cause-and-effect diagram) was used to graphi- cally express and facilitate understanding of the causes of poor sales performance. Performance Improvement • Volume 53 • Number 10 • DOI: 10.1002/pfi 31 ORGANIZATIONAL ANALYSIS Supermarkets in India cater to the daily, weekly, and monthly shopping needs of customers. The product offerings include a wide variety of fresh fruits and veg- etables and other groceries; personal care and home care items; general merchandise; and a basic range of apparel. There is a store space of approximately 2,500 square feet per location. Currently, the umbrella com- pany has over 490 supermarkets across the country. This company had launched a huge assortment of private labels in food, grocery items, and staples. At the time of the study, Coimbatore had eight stores located in different parts of the city. Among these, the sales per- formance of four supermarkets was low; therefore, as per the request of the client, the study was undertaken in those four stores. The vision of the company is “Consistently providing the Indian consumer complete and differentiated shop- ping experiences and be amongst India’s top retailers, while delivering superior returns to all stakeholders.” The mission is “to deliver superior value to customers, shareholders, employees, and the society.” Integrity, com- mitment, passion, seamlessness, and speed are the values that drive the organization’s culture and priorities. ENVIRONMENTAL ANALYSIS Customers, competitors, and employees are the important stakeholders in a retail business. Competitors vary for each store based on its location and can include organized retailers or unorganized retailers such as local kirana stores. Kirana stores are small family run shops sell- ing groceries and other items. A customers inquiry was done concerning the competitors. Five factors, including (1) product availability and size, (2) product quality, (3) product price, (4) services rendered, and (5) what was being offered in the stores were used to compare the client stores with those of the competitors. Among these, it was found that product availability and size were the major factors that attracted customers to competitors. These attributes were missing in the client stores. The products for the four stores were placed on the shelves irrespective of requirements for each store. That is, the types and sizes of the products desired by the customers were not stocked in the stores. Customers who visited the stores expressed disap- pointment in the nonavailability and package sizes of the products. Customers may need 500 grams or 1 kilogram of a product, but the client store only stocked 5 kilograms. As a result, the customers moved on to a nearby store for their purchases. Retail service quality-assessed for the client stores indicated that product-related services, including the availability of various product and package sizes, contribute to retail service quality. Demographic factors such as customer age varied in all four stores. Because store location impacts the age of the customers visiting a particular store, customer age must be con- sidered when assessing the products available for sale. As noted earlier, the ISPI Human Performance Technology model was adopted for this study. It is displayed in Figure 1 , which shows the components of environmental analysis. The organizational structure of the client firm shows that it is divided into different zones for the purpose of administration (Figure 2 ). Zones are further divided into three clusters. Each cluster has eight stores. The Coimbatore cluster has a deputy manager, human resources manager, cluster manager, merchandising man- ager, distribution center manager, and computer center manager. A distribution center is located in Coimbatore, which supplies the inventory to all of the stores in the Coimbatore cluster. A cluster manager oversees eight stores and plays an advisory role for each store manager, who is the sole individual in charge of a given store. The store manag- ers report daily to their head office in Mumbai. They are required to send order of goods based on their requirements to the regional office in Coimbatore and are expected to achieve their sales targets. It also is their responsibility to communicate the rules and regulations to the customer service supervisor and customer ser- vice assistants in their store. Store managers report the amount of daily cash at the end of each day. Unlike regular managers who work in one store, retail trainees work in two stores. In addition, they have a master of business administration degree. Among two stores in the study, one store had two retail trainees. The The four selected supermarkets were showing poor sales performance, as confirmed by company records. The ISPI HPT model was applied to address the performance problems of the four supermarkets. 32 • DOI: 10.1002/pfi • NOVEMBER/DECEMBER 2014 stock-keeping unit rotation, shelf edge labeling, visual display, disposal of fruits and vegetables, sales and cus- tomer service, cashiering, and planogram implementa- tion. (Planograms are visual representation of a store’s products or services. Customer service assistants are charged with maintaining the shelves to align with pla- nograms.) In addition, they are engaged in door delivery and marketing activities. The company provides the customer service assis- tants with name badges and T-shirts. They work an 8-hour shift, as per government norms, and are pro- vided with refreshments two times daily. After their initial hiring, customer service assistants normally undergo a training program that prepares them for customer interaction, billing procedures, and so on. A customer service assistant with 6 months of experience appointment of retail trainees instead of a regular store manager is not considered beneficial given that the man- agement of a store requires an experienced store manager. Customer service supervisors supervise the customer service assistants. It was found that the position of cus- tomer service supervisor in three of the stores remained vacant. This increased the work load of the store manager. Moreover, the number of customer service assistants in the four stores was not the same. Customer service assistants are the sales personnel who have direct contact with the customers. They are charged with keeping the floor space neat and clean and are assisted by housekeeping staff who clean the stores. Additional tasks performed by customer service assistants include the unloading of goods for sale, the tally of goods, the refill and stacking of merchandise, FIGURE 1. INTERNATIONAL SOCIETY FOR PERFORMANCE IMPROVEMENT HUMAN PERFORMANCE TECHNOLOGY MODEL Source. Van Tiem, Moseley, and Dessinger, 2004, p. 3. Performance Improvement • Volume 53 • Number 10 • DOI: 10.1002/pfi 33 can become a customer service supervisor after passing a written exam. The store manager, customer service supervisor, and customer service assistant perform the front-end operations. The role of the front-end employees directly influences a store’s performance. In addition, the expectation of the employees was found by assessing the job sati sfaction of the employees. It was found that among the various components of job sat- isfaction, the employees were dissatisfied with their pay. GAP ANALYSIS The actual state of performance indicated that the cus- tomers were not satisfied with the stores. This was common to all four stores owned by the company. The employees were not satisfied and showed symptoms of lethargy while at work. Their queries were not being taken care by management. In addition, most of the employees were relatively new, with minimum experi- ence. There was a lack of adequate training for employees in the stores. The desired workforce performance of pro- viding consistent service and more value to the customers was lacking, particularly the mission to provide value to customers. The reasons for these performance gaps were found through a cause analysis. CAUSE ANALYSIS An organizational environment model was used for the cause analysis. Causes are identified by looking into the internal and external environments of the organization. Causes are identified by having one-on-one discussions with customers and employees and also by first-hand observations of activities in the stores. It was noted that store managers must get approval, which takes 3 to 4 days, from the head office for all deci- sions. For example, repairs and maintenance of backup generators for power requires approval from the head office. Frequent power outages occur in the locality, and the absence of power hinders sales in the stores. Hence, store managers were seeking more decision-making power in solving store-related issues. This type of decen- tralization is needed to improve the overall decision- making capabilities of the store managers and will lead to quick remedies for any issues in the store. In addition, it was noted that the distribution center does not adhere to the requests placed by the store managers, resulting in the FIGURE 2. ORGANIZATIONAL STRUCTURE OF THE COMPANY Store Manager (1) Retail Trainee(2) Retail Trainee (1) Customer Service Supervisor (1) Customer Service Supervisor(Vacant) Customer Service Supervisor (Vacant) Customer Service Assistants (7) Customer Service Assistants(10) Customer Service Assistants (6) Back End Deputy Manager(1) HR Manager(1) Cluster Manager (1) Merchandising Manager (1) Distribution Center Manager (1) Computer Center Manager (1) Front End Customer Service Assistants (6) Customer service Supervisor(Vacant) Store Manager (1) 34 • DOI: 10.1002/pfi • NOVEMBER/DECEMBER 2014 store’s not being able to stock the required products. This is further exasperated by the excessive need to dispose of expired products. It was also noted that offers and discounts were not properly displayed in the racks, resulting in the customers’ not being aware of them. The display signs identifying sections of the store to help locate various products were too small. Also, because cash transactions are more preva- lent than the use of credit cards, the stores must maintain adequate coinage. However, they often faced cash short- ages. In addition, the stores were not stocking adequate supplies of essential things such as paper for printing bills. It was observed that inventory stocks were being stored in open floor spaces, hindering movement inside the store. The space near the checkout area was not attractive or neat. The billing or checkout counter is where the cus- tomers spend time, but there was no space allocated near the billing counter for products such as chocolates, other candy, and similar products that would appeal to the cus- tomers or to their children who often accompany them. In making our observations, it was noted that air-cool- ing machines were frequently not operating in the stores; this resulted in fruits and vegetables that were not kept fresh. Billing machines, computers that print bills, were not properly maintained and needed frequent repairs. Moreover, the special offers given for some products were not updated in the billing machine, resulting in delays in the billing and checkout processes. Issues such as the repair of card-swipe machines were not taken care of immediately; customers who wanted to pay with a credit card were leaving a store without buying anything. Also, door delivery services were an issue due to poor main- tenance of the delivery vehicle shared by the four stores. Customer service assistants and store managers were often replaced. Frequent changes of store managers obstruct the normal functioning of a store. When a new store manager became familiar with the store environ- ment, too often the manager was transferred to another store. The majority of the customer service assistants had only 3 to 6 months’ experience. The maximum experience of the customer service assistants was about one year. The more experienced customer service assistants had devel- oped rapport with the customers. Some of the customer service assistants, however, were not experienced in cus- tomer billing. Only one to two customer service assistants per store knew the billing process. When a customer ser- vice assistant who knew the billing process left the store by 4 p.m., no customer service assistant was there to operate the billing machine, resulting in the store manager having to do that task. This hindered operations within the store. The stores operated with part-timers after 6 p.m., even though the peak hour of operation for the stores begins at 3 p.m. and extends into the evening. At 7 p.m., in the middle of the peak time period, part-timers take on the roles of the regular customer service assistants. It was also observed that the store manager’s office in some stores is small, making it difficult for customer ser- vice assistants and others to relax during lunch and break times. Customer service assistants also noted that they are responsible for loading the inventory, which hinders their assigned task of attending to customers. The orga- nizational environmental model is displayed in Table 1 . TABLE 1 ORGANIZATION ENVIRONMENT MODEL EMPLOYEES MANAGEMENT Internal Environment Inputs Presence of adequate manpower Basic qualification of sales personnel strictly adhered to Necessary training given regarding bill- ing and knowledge of products Adequate authority such as deciding offers and sales promotions given Proper allocation of work to store-level workers Communication of responsibilities and benefits received Adequate pay for work done Freedom of expression of problems and sug- gestions Work Conducive work environ- ment and providing refreshments Policies Is the administrative process too long? Are the products delivered to the store based on requirements? Maintenance of store ambience Repairs and mainte- nance of machines Provision of neces- sary vehicles for transmission of goods External Environment COMPETITORS CUSTOMERS Availability of product range Pricing policy Offers and discounts Employee policy Advertising of offers Presence of all product ranges Presence of legible shelf labels indicat- ing product ranges Expectation about knowledge of use of products Delivery of goods Performance Improvement • Volume 53 • Number 10 • DOI: 10.1002/pfi 35 INTERVENTIONS DESIGNED FOR THE SUPERMARKETS As per the analyses, it was found that the customers and employees were not satisfied with the supermar- kets. Training, work design, job aids, work methods, staffing, compensation, organizational communication, and store-level changes were among the recommended interventions. As per the company mandate, customer service assis- tants should be given training in billing procedures, but the company was not implementing the mandate. It was recommended that on-the-job training be given to customer service assistants and store managers so they can obtain hands-on and practical experience. Store managers need to be trained in demand-forecasting tech- niques. Customer service assistants must be assigned an individual product line and the responsibility of selling that product line. It must be their duty to replenish the shelves, predict the requirements, and check for expired products in the product line assigned to them. A delivery vehicle should be provided for each store. Separate personnel should be entrusted with the respon- sibility of checking the billing machines for each cluster. A retail store management inventory should be installed in all the stores to track the inventory. Store managers should forecast the requirements of staples, fast-moving consumer goods, fruits and vegetables, milk products, and so on. Daily forecasting of fruits and vegetables and weekly forecasting of other goods should be done by the store manager. The distribution center should send the stocks to the stores based on the individual store fore- casts. This will help reduce waste in the stores. Customer service assistants work in shifts, so work allotment should be on a rotation basis. As an incentive, a certain percentage of profits should be allocated to a store for achieving its sales target. This will motivate the store manager and team to reach their sales target. Suggestion boxes should be maintained in each store so the customers can express their comments and concerns. A toll-free number should be available for the customer service assistants to express their grievances. The rack near the billing section should be maintained neatly and stocked with products such as chocolates, new arrivals, and discount items. A separate place for storing inventory should be allotted instead of placing inventory in customer floor spaces. A proper rest place for customer ser- vice assistants should be provided to maintain their privacy. These interventions will help the supermarkets revive their sales. The cause-and-effect diagram that depicts these issues and intervention choices is displayed in Figure 3 . Training, work design, job aids, work methods, staffing, compensation, organizational communication, and store- level changes were among the recommended interventions. FIGURE 3. CAUSE AND EFFECT DIAGRAM 36 • DOI: 10.1002/pfi • NOVEMBER/DECEMBER 2014 CONCLUSIONS More priority to customers and employees as the main stakeholders of the four supermarkets studied is needed. Customer satisfaction and retention is a prime requi- site for maintaining sales in supermarket settings. Long delays in approvals are due to a nonresponsive central- ized administration, and the lack of desired products and product sizes in each store is due to poor inven- tory management. Hence, the nonresponsive central- ized administration, poor inventory management, and frequent changes of front-end employees are the main reasons for the sales reductions in the supermarkets that were studied. We found the ISPI HPT model to be a valid model that can be applied to a retail sector within conditions available in India. Because of a limited study period, however, the analysis and intervention design phases of the project had to be restricted. The observation of in-store activities helped identify the causes of poor per- formance. In addition, detailed observations improved understanding of the behavior of customer service assis- tants toward the customers. The employees were very cordial and expressed their views openly. This facilitated investigation of the performance problems in each store. The ISPI HPT model is a relatively simple and straightforward model that can fit into most types of business organizations. The sequential steps helped diagnose the performance problem. The systems view of the model better ensures a holistic view of the perfor- mance problems. References Ahn ,   C.K. , Kang ,   C. , Park ,   J.-H. , & Rim ,   S.T. ( 2009 ). An application of human performance technology: A case study at LG CNS . Journal of Service Science , 1 ( 2 ), 211 – 225 . Bolin ,   A.U. ( 2007 ). HPT in military settings . Performance Improvement , 46 ( 3 ), 5 – 7 . McElyea ,   J.E. , & Van Tiem , D. ( 2008 ). HPT and small business: Gold mine or land mine? Performance Improvement , 47 ( 4 ), 33 – 38 . Pullen ,   W. , & Gallant ,   W. ( 2009 ). Embedding HPT: Improving police performance by implementing human per- formance technology in the Royal Canadian Mounted Police . Performance Improvement , 48 ( 3 ), 7 – 12 . Van Tiem ,   D.M. , Moseley ,   J.L. , & Dessinger ,   J.C. ( 2004 ). Fundamentals of performance technology . Washington, DC : International Society for Performance Improvement . Wilmoth ,   F.S. , Prigmore ,   C. , & Bray ,   M. ( 2002 ). HPT mod- els: An overview of major models in the field . Performance Improvement , 41 ( 8 ), 14 – 22 . Performance Improvement • Volume 53 • Number 10 • DOI: 10.1002/pfi 37 SUBIAN HEMALATHA, PhD, is presently working as an assistant professor in the Department of Agri- cultural and Rural Management of Tamil Nadu Agricultural University, Coimbatore, India. She has an undergraduate degree in agriculture, a postgraduate degree in business management, and a PhD in agribusiness and development management. She teaches courses such as org anizational behavior and human resource management for postgraduate students. Her research intere sts are emotional intelli- gence, job attitudes, and human performance technology. She may be reached at [email protected] RENGAN VENKATRAM, PhD, is a professor in the Department of Agricultural and Rural Management, Tamil Nadu Agricultural University, Coimbatore, India. He studied agricultural sciences and received a postgraduate degree in agricultural marketing management from Tamil Nadu Agricultural University. He later received a PhD in agricultural economics at Tamil Nadu Agricultural University. His specialization and research interests are marketing management, development planning, s kill development in the agri- cultural sector, and rural development. He may be reached at [email protected] RUDRAMOORTHY KRISHNAVENI, PhD, is presently the functional head of the human resources strea m and professor of human resources and organization behavior at PSG Instit ute of Management, Coim- batore, Tamil Nadu. She has authored textbooks, and her articles can be found in prominent interna- tional- and national-level journals. She is the founding executive editor of the Journal of Contemporary Research in Management ; is editorial board member of various peer-reviewed journals; has facilitated 12 scholars while they obtained their doctoral degrees; and is regularly engaged in organizing national- level conferences, faculty development programs, and management development programs. Awards received include the Outstanding Women Researcher (2010) and Best Management Educator (2009). Presently, her research is directed toward emotional intelligence, capacity building, performance man- agement, and human performance technology. She may be reached at [email protected]

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