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Task 1: During discussions, both the Design Manager and Sales Manager have expressed concerns that staffing levels are not sufficient to meet the demands in the change of business strategy.

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Purpose of Assessment

The purpose of this assessment is to demonstrate knowledge and  understanding of how to manage multiple and  remote teams, improve team performance and  recruit staff members.

The assessment comprises a scenario and  a number of tasks, each aligned to the  assessment criteria  of the unit. When completed, these tasks should generate the  evidence the  Assessor will need to make a judgement on whether the  learner has passed the  unit.

A Result Sheet is provided at the  end of this brief to support Assessors in assessing each assessment criterion and  to record the final outcome of the  unit.

Scenario

Sylvan Furniture Ltd. is based in the North of England, and  aspires to be  a market leader in manufacturing furniture. The company focuses on the  design, production and  sale of garden furniture products to retailers throughout England and  Wales. As the Operations Manager for Sylvan Furniture Ltd, you are responsible for managing three teams during a challenging period in your organisation. Based in Sylvan Furniture Ltd.’s factory  in Manchester, you work flexible hours  to match business needs, and occasionally work off-site. Your responsibilities include setting objectives for your teams, managing their performance to achieve business goals, identifying skills gaps and  recruiting new staff when  required. There  are three experienced team managers to support you in ensuring high performance.

Unfortunately, sales  of several existing product lines have declined in the last two years,  and annual net  profits  were  recently reported as 30% lower than  last year, putting the  business and its employees at risk. The Company Directors have considered options to increase sales revenue, and  at a recent strategy meeting agreed to focus on four key areas:

 Implement recognised strategies to develop high performing teams.

 Develop a range of new innovative and  eco-friendly products (Design).

 Reduce production costs  to increase profit margins (Production).

 Expand sales  of products into a new region - Scotland (Sales).

The Design Team  is responsible for designing and  developing the  furniture products. Their office is based in Sylvan Furniture Ltd.’s factory in Manchester and  staff all work regular hours from 8am to 5pm,  Monday to Friday. There  is a Design Manager and two Product Designers who work closely with the Production Team.  The Design Manager uses  a democratic management style, as both staff have  over 10 years of experience (although neither has designed eco-friendly products).

The Production Team  has 10 staff members, and  is managed by a Production Manager who has a focus on Health and  Safety and  a predominantly autocratic management style. The team is responsible for testing the  new designs received from the Design Team.  Following  rigorous testing they finalise the  furniture specifications and  secure suppliers for the  materials required. Once the  final furniture ranges are agreed, they prepare the relevant production lines ready  for manufacture of the  furniture. Furniture is produced to order, with an eight-week lead  time. All staff work in rotating shift patterns to maximise production over the 16-hour  period that  the factory operates each day. Staff work a variety of patterns including: three x 12-hour  shifts per week; five x 8-hour  shifts per  week; and  part  time hours ranging from 4 to 24 hours  per  week.

 

Sales  Manager

 

 

Sales Executive (Central - Birmingham)

The Sales  Team  is responsible for promoting and  selling  the  products, and  employs six staff. The Sales Manager and  three Sales Executives are all home-based (see the  organisational chart for locations). Their role involves travelling to existing and  prospective customers within their designated region to secure orders. They work closely with two Telesales Representatives who are based in India. Their role is to respond to customer calls, answering questions about the products and  closing  sales.

Departmental Organisational Structure

Operations

Manager (YOU)

Administrative

Assistant

 

Design Manager

Production

Manager

Product

Designer

(x 2 staff)

Engineer


Sales Executive (North  - Newcastle)

Sales  Executive

(South  - Bristol)

Production Team (x 10 staff)

Telesales Agents

(x 2 staff - India)

Stores Assistant

Tasks

You have been asked to think about how you will manage your multiple and  remote teams during the next financial year. A key objective for you is to improve current performance to create high performing teams that  will help  to sustain the  business in the future.

The following  tasks must  be completed:

Task 1: During  discussions, both the  Design Manager and  Sales Manager have expressed concerns that  staffing  levels are not sufficient  to meet the  demands in the change of business strategy.

Explain the  reasons why these two managers think there is a need for additional staff. Outline the recruitment options that  might be considered.

Task 2: A decision has been made to recruit  one new member of staff and  the  company’s HR Manager has asked to meet with you. Describe the  steps involved  in recruiting staff, from identifying this initial need through to the  new employee starting work.

Explain how you and  your organisation would  ensure that  the  recruitment and  selection processes are fair.

Task 3: You have responsibility for managing three diverse teams. Describe at least  two challenges that  you are likely to face in your role when  managing multiple teams.

To address the challenges you have identified, analyse the strategy for each challenge that  you could  use to manage these teams. You may like to consider roles and  accountabilities, structuring of tasks, performance monitoring, team support etc.

Explain how you would  monitor and  maintain the performance of these three teams, exploring aspects such as quality, efficiency, individual/team performance, adherence to policy/procedure.

For the  sales  team who work remotely, consider how your approach would  differ, by explaining some of the  day-to-day management activities  that  help  to maintain the performance of remote teams. Outline what technological tools  are available to support remote team working,  and explain  how at least  two of these could  be used to overcome the  challenges you have identified.

Task 4: The business has a strong focus on developing High Performing Teams. Explain the  process you will use to set objectives for the  teams, including:

 the  stages involved,  from strategy to individual  employee

 how you will involve teams  and  individuals in agreeing objectives

 how you will check  that  objectives are realistic  and  achievable.

Explain how the  appraisal process could  be used to develop a High Performing Team, including:

 the  stages involved,  and  associated documents

 at least  two techniques for identifying under-performing individuals

 how to address under-performance in the  workplace using  the techniques.

You may like to define what is meant by a ‘High Performing Team’ in your response. Analyse at least  three performance management techniques that  could  be used in Sylvan Furniture Ltd. and  make  a recommendation, outlining your reasoning.

Task 5: As a result  of the new business direction, a key aspect of your management approach will be to encourage the  teams to work together effectively.

Explain why collaboration between members of the  same team is important. You may like to consider approaches that  encourage collaboration and  obstacles to successful collaboration.

Explain how individual/team knowledge and  expertise could  be shared to facilitate high performance.

Task 6: During  the year ahead, you anticipate that  there will be some significant changes to how people work, and  there are already some general learning and  development needs identified.

Describe how you will identify the  specific  skills gaps in individuals, giving examples of development needs that  may be identified and  how you could  address these.

You would  also like to take  the opportunity to think about implementing a talent management system to ensure that  you develop and  retain  talented individuals. Identify at least  two talent management models, and  explain  how these could  be used to identify,  develop and  retain talented members of staff at Sylvan Furniture Ltd. Include an explanation of how organisational objectives could  be met  through talent planning and  management.

Task 7: It is likely that  you will need to delegate to your three managers. Describe a range of approaches that  you could  use to delegate effectively. (You may like to consider some of the factors  involved,  and  refer to relevant theories to support your points).  Explain what can make delegation  effective, giving examples to illustrate your ideas


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