Human Resources: Johnson & Johnson, Assessment Example
Johnson & Johnson is a global company with its headquarters located in New Brunswick, New Jersey and a brand concept that is centered on the importance of health care. Johnson & Johnson operates in the health industry that is growing from an already $6 trillion business (JNJ, 2015). Along with its subsidiaries, Johnson & Johnson researches, develops, manufactures, and markets health and personal care products. The company’s operations fall into three segments. These are 1) consumer, 2) pharmaceutical, and 3) medical devices. The company markets a host of brands that include Listerine (oral care products); Aveeno, Clean & Clear, Lubriderm, and Neutrogena (skin care products); Stayfree and Carefree (women’s health products); Band-Aid and Neosporin (first aid products); and Tylenol, Sudafed, and Zyrtec (over-the-counter medicines) (Yahoo! Finance-A, 2015), to name only a few.
Johnson & Johnson was founded in 1886 in the city of its current location, New Brunswick, New Jersey, by three brothers—Robert Wood Johnson, James Wood Johnson, and Edward Mead Johnson. In Johnson & Johnson’s early days, it published the standard texts for teaching antiseptic surgery, which was instrumental in the practice of sterile surgery, and they were responsible for the first commercial first aid kits in 1888. Also in the 1880s, Johnson & Johnson produce maternity kits and its signature baby powder. In the late 1880s, the company first mass produces women’s sanitary protection products and dental floss (JNJ-2, 2015).
The early 1990s saw the company’s launch of Band-Aids, contraceptive gel, and silkworm sutures. Johnson & Johnson also began its global expansion in the early 1990s. Johnson’s Baby Shampoo debuted in 1954 and Tylenol in 1959. The company entered the vision care, mechanical would closure, and diabetes management market in 1976. In 1987, the company debuts its ACUVUE daily disposable contact lenses. From the late 1990s until the present, the company also pioneered other products and procedures in the health industry such as endo-surgery, stents, Listerine, and Bengay (JNJ-2, 2015).
Johnson & Johnson maintains its business success by achieving organisational objectives through continuously delivering value to consumers, patients, caregivers, employees, communities and shareholders. The company’s management understands the importance of human resources management. The company is power-driven in its performance in the industry and is poised to remain a leader in the industry. In addition, the company is set for managing over the long-term, as it focuses on building and maintaining long-term brand equity and customer loyalty by creating value for the long-term. Johnson and Johnson also takes a decentralized management approach and has the ability to capitalize on its employees’ expertise and developing in local markets around the world. (HRM) to be able to reach organisational goals to achieve organisational objectives.
Organisational Objectives and HRM
Strategic perspectives of HRM for Johnson & Johnson include a critical assessment of the extent to which HRM is linked to the company’s organisational objectives, as well as how human resource practices manage the relationship between employees and the organisation.
Johnson & Johnson’s organisational objectives includes using a decentralized management approach, which allows for the ability to capitalize on the expertise of those employees on the front line with customers and patients, who are better at understanding their needs. The company’s management approach has been instrumental in the company’s success in global expansion and developing products in local markets that cater to the needs of the people in those markets (JNJ-3, 2015).
Additionally, Johnson & Johnson’s organisational objectives link with its HRM approach by focusing on its employees and values. Johnson & Johnson’s business mission strategy includes valuing its employees, which helps drive its strategic growth based on strategic principles. The company’s culture and values focuses on developing its employees’ talents so that they can better serve its customers. This includes commitment to attracting and retaining the best talent in the industry (JNJ-3, 2015).
Furthermore, Johnson & Johnson’s organisational objectives include its business mission. Johnson & Johnson utilizes a multi-channel approach to better reach all of its niche markets in the health and personal care products industry. This is done efficiently and effectively and allows the company to expand its quality brands in both existing and emerging target markets. In addition, the company’s strategic principles are an important part of its business mission, which are the foundation that drives the company’s growth in the advancement of health and personal care for customers and patients (JNJ-3, 2015).
The core of the company’s mission is broken down into four categories, which are: 1) broad-based health care, 2) managing for the long-term, 3) having a decentralized management approach, and 4) focus on people and values.
Broad-based Health Care
Johnson & Johnson divides this mission category into three product market segments, which are: 1) prevention, 2) diagnosis, and 3) treatment. Johnson & Johnson has wide coverage with these segments, as controlling one-third of the health care market globally. This allows the company the power to drive performance in a consistent manner and to pursue opportunities for growth in the fastest growing health care segments in the market. Additionally, Johnson & Johnson’s broad reach has given them room to provide holistic patient care products and therapeutic innovations in the evolving health care environment within the industry (JNJ-3, 2015).
Managing for the Long-term
Managing for the long-term means that the company is focused on building and maintaining long-term brand equity as well as sustainable customer loyalty and creating sustainable value for its shareholders over the long-term. Initiatives the company has undertaken to focus on long-term management include investing billions of dollars in research and development (R&D) and generating organic growth through innovation, partnerships, and acquisitions (JNJ-3, 2015).
Having a Decentralized Management Approach
Operating under a decentralized management approach allows Johnson & Johnson the ability to capitalize on the expertise of those on the front line with customers and patients, who are better at understanding their needs. This approach has been instrumental in the company’s success in global expansion and developing products in local markets that cater to the needs of the people in those markets.
Focus on People and Values
As mentioned, Johnson & Johnson’s values its people, driving strategic growth via its strategic principles. The company’s culture and values focuses on developing its employees’ talents so that they can better serve its customers. This includes commitment to attracting and retaining the best talent in the industry. Johnson & Johnson’s business mission is designed to allow the company to develop the most effective and efficient marketing strategy to garner the most business to satisfy its shareholders and to ensure continued growth of the firm.
Yet, another aspect of Johnson & Johnson’s organisational objectives includes strategically analysing issues. Johnson & Johnson’s strategic issues include risks associated with product safety, strategic threats, operational issues, reporting obligations, and legal compliance issues. These issues can affect patients, customers, communities, employees, and shareholders. For example, no doubt, everyone remembers the deadly Tylenol event that happened in 1982 when several people died from taking cyanide-laced Tylenol capsules. Johnson & Johnson initiated damage control by relying on their crisis communication strategies to restore public trust (Stewart & Paine, 2011). This is an example of the types of issues that Johnson & Johnson must strategically prevent and address.
Johnson & Johnson’s strategic objectives are focused on its strategic principles, which include building its foundation based on health care. This also includes managing with the future in mind by focusing on current and future business operations under its decentralized management style. Additionally, because Johnson & Johnson’s corporate culture fosters valuing and developing its people, it is understood that happy employees do better at their jobs. Johnson & Johnson is also focused on what drives strategic growth and sustainability into the future. This includes creating value through innovation, extending its global reach, focusing in local markets, executing excellence, (JNJ-3, 2015) and practicing good CSR through ethical and social responsibility.
Ethical and Social Responsibility
Aside from product and employee development, Johnson & Johnson is committed to the practice of good ethical and social responsibility in society, which is evidenced by its involvement in various initiatives to support and sponsor causes and campaigns that encourage healthy lifestyles. According to the company’s website (JNJ-2, 2015), its initiatives include:
- A global campaign called Safe Kids Worldwide, which was instrumental in a 45% reduction in accidental injuries of children 14 and under in the U.S. by 2008.
- Supporting veterans’ health and wellness initiatives through partnerships with various non-profit and government groups.
- Sponsoring a global health initiative to ensure the rights of individuals abroad to have equal access to quality and affordable health care.
- Supporting environmental responsibility initiatives to safeguard the planet by reducing energy consumption, decreasing waste disposal, and running clean energy sources.
Johnson & Johnson’s ethical and social responsibilities are woven into its strategic framework, as the largest health care company in the world. The company’s objectives include practicing good corporate social responsibility (CSR) and recognizing the importance of human health, human rights, and the health of the planet (JNJ-6, 2015).
Additionally, Johnson & Johnson’s ethical and social responsibility extends to how recognizing the value of the company’s employees and how they are the catalysts to ensuring that ethical and social initiatives are carried out. This has much to do also with Johnson & Johnson’s employee recruitment process, as it is important for any company to attract and retain the best personnel that fits well with the company’s culture to be able to efficiently carry out company objectives.
Recruitment and Selection
As stated, Johnson & Johnson takes a decentralized approach to management, which also helps structure its organisational approach to the recruitment and selection process. Johnson & Johnson’s process in this area is centered on ensuring that potential talent understands the company’s culture, as a guideline of the type of people the company is eager to work with. According to the company’s career pages on its website, its culture includes a strong commitment to caring, being responsible to communities, applying knowledge, fostering diversity, being drivers of the success of the company, and being passionate about doing what is right. Additionally, Johnson & Johnson looks to recruit individuals who are interested in being appreciated for their worth, driving their careers forward, and being a part of something bigger. It is these and other shared values that helps with success decisions and direction for the company. According to the company’s website, under the heading “Learn How We Hire” (JNJ-8), their hiring process includes giving hiring candidates a choice of careers classified in four segments: 1) function, 2) experienced, 3) business, and 4) country.
Career categories under the function segment include communications, design, engineering, facilities, finance, administration, management, human resources, information technology, legal, marketing, quality assurance, research & development, sales, and planning. The experienced segment covers candidates who have a significant amount of experience in the workforce and the business segment encompasses those who have been in the business field and are acclimated to business processes. This segment employs individuals in Johnson & Johnson’s consumer, medical devices, and pharmaceuticals categories. Finally, the country segment gives candidates the opportunity to choose to work in one of Johnson & Johnson’s 38 countries in which it has a presence (JNJ-8). Additionally, recruitment efforts include the company’s internal employee referral program to gain access to potential talent known to its existing employees. This is in addition to the company’s other recruitment avenues such as via the Internet, recruitment fairs, and social media advertising. Part of the company’s recruitment strategy includes assessing competencies based on observable behaviors, which is assessed through the company’s STAR (situation, technique, action, results) recruitment process for employee candidates (Xavier, 2003).
The hiring process includes an application screening and then an email is sent to candidates if chosen for a phone interview. After that, if selected, candidates move to additional interviews, either in person or by video chat via Skype. Candidates are encouraged to become familiar with Johnson & Johnson’s business, culture, and values by looking over the website, and be prepared to give examples of these concepts and principles that have been applied in previous work or academic experiences. Once a candidate is selected from successfully completing all steps of the hiring process, the candidate receives an offer letter from Johnson & Johnson’s Talent Acquisition Team. This is Johnson & Johnson’s conscientious formula for recruiting the best talent possible for its organisation and retention of this talent “follows as a positive outcome of matching the values and expectations between the employees and Johnson & Johnson” (Xavier, 2003, p. 85).
Employee Performance and Reward
Johnson & Johnson takes a communicative performance management approach with its employees that is focused on conversational style performance evaluations. These are “frequent and meaningful, formal and informal, conversations that fuel a culture of high performance,” according to the company’s strategic framework. The employee performance process includes a “5 Conversations Framework” approach. These five conversations include 1) Performance Planning, 2) Midyear, 3) Succession Planning, 4) Year-End, and 5) Compensation. This structured performance process is purposed to reinforce and clarify expectations, ensure employees objectives are in line with company objectives, and to ensure employees are recognized and appreciated for their contributions. In addition, employee performance is measured on a 4-point rating scale that is associated with linking performance and pay. (JNJ-6, 2015).
Learning and Development
Employee performance is linked to their learning and development within the company. At Johnson & Johnson, the employees actively participate in their own development planning. This is because the company gives employees the proper tools and resources to assist them in growing and developing. This includes being empowered to manage their own career development, so that they understand what is expected regarding how their performance ties in with their personal and career development. According to Johnson & Johnson’s strategic framework page on its site, “development is an interconnected series of experiences that strengthen our workforce and advance our organization” (JNJ-9, 2015).
Learning and development initiatives at Johnson & Johnson include business-aligned training in various categories, such as leadership development, management education, and training in areas such as marketing, business practices, finance and compliance. In addition, training is offered through various means such as on-the-job training and online courses that include independent study, web-based, simulations, assessments, workshops and action planning. More than 400 courses are offered globally and accessible to all employees worldwide to coincide with various growth stages (JNJ-9, 2015). The amount of training employees receive depends on their level within the organisation. Employees receive at least eight hours of training a year. Senior management employees receive six to seven days of training and education each year, middle management, as well as frontline employees, receive four to five days of training and education, and executive management receive eight to 19 days of training and education per year (JNJ-9, 2015). This is part of how Johnson & Johnson retains its top talent, by ensuring they have room to grow and feel able to advance within the company through learning and development.
Johnson & Johnson fosters an inclusive workplace atmosphere that is evident by its commitment to diversity in the workplace. This has been driven by the organisation’s active M&A initiatives, product diversification, and encouragement of company values. Diversity in Johnson & Johnson’s workplace falls into four categories: 1) multinational diversity, 2) ethnic diversity, 3) religious diversity, and 4) educational diversity (Xavier, 2003).
Johnson & Johnson’s workplace relations with its employees also include commitment to optimal work, family and personal life balance. The company offers its employees various comprehensive services and programs with a holistic approach to help employees be effective at home and at work. These services and programs include education, adoption, flexible working arrangements, child care, and elder care, and these programs and services are available to all employees globally. Johnson & Johnson’s motto on this is “helping employees live well, work well and be well” (JNJ-9, 2015).
Another positive aspect of Johnson & Johnson’s workplace relations with its employees is the way the company makes all employees feel connected, no matter what their cultures. This is due to the organisation’s commitment to fostering a friendly-work environment for its employees, which is driven by its Credo values of balancing work and personal life in a smooth and positive way. This allows employees to work with low stress in a warm atmosphere within the company’s decentralized structure. Other programs offered to employees include the employee assistance program, health assessments, health counseling, health programs, and wellness and fitness services (JNJ-9, 2015).
Conclusion and Recommendations
As evident in this research, Johnson & Johnson’s decentralized human resources management (HRM) approach has worked well for the company, even in light of its high profile scandal regarding the Tylenol cyanide deaths in 1982 (Stewart & Payne, 2011). The company was able to implement effective crisis management strategies and retain existing employees and customers and attract new employees and customers over the past decades. This is an example of how the company has ensured sustainable HRM and it is recommended that the company continue in this way into the future.
Additionally, it is recommended that Johnson & Johnson adopt and implement more focused initiatives to channel its leadership development in the direction of training all employees to develop leadership qualities. This will ensure that its workforce is continually strengthened and will be able to withstand changes that will arise and any other major crises that may arise as well.
Johnson & Johnson organizes its HRM function with the employees in mind, and this drives improved performance and a level of commitment in its employees, which translates into positive interactions with the customers and patients that use Johnson & Johnson products on a daily basis. One recommendation in the area of learning and development is that the company should ensure that all of its training materials are translated into the local languages of its diverse locations, as only some of the materials is in languages other than English. This would take its diversity initiatives to new levels, which would in turn foster another level of pride and commitment in employees around the world.
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