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Business Studies

Business Studies (98)

Friday, 30 May 2014 13:52

Oil and Gas Industry

Written by

  Oil and Gas Industry


 

Critical Industry Competition Analysis

 The oil and gas industry is volatile, expensive, and highly political. It is also vital for every citizen of the world (Inkpen & Moffett, 2011). It fuels nearly all other industries, in the world, from information technology to agriculture. Oil and gas power vehicles, heat homes, and facilitate growth of agricultural plants, which are important for production of food. This is the reason why the global energy demand is expected to grow by at least 33% when the clock hits 2035, with a high proportion of energy being supplied by oil and gas (Chauhan, 2010).


Share of Primary Fuels in the World Power

Product

2009

2030

Gas

22%

21%

Coal

47%

49%

Oil

6%

2%

Renewables

4%

8%

Nuclear

15%

14%

Hydro

6%

6%

Mitchell, Marcel and Mitchell, Beth, 2012


The industry is oligopolistic (Randall, 2008). Only a few industry giants including Tullow Oil, British Petroleum, and Premium Oil have the capital and cutting-edge technologies essential for expanding and improving yields while monitoring and managing environmental impacts. Hence, the industry is an oligopoly, where entry is barred for companies whose production and distribution capacity do not match that of the industry giants.  The competition between these companies is driven by factors, in the macro environment, including government policies, cost inflation factors, and the changing price dynamics. At the level of supply, unconventional resource development, such as shale gas and globalization of gas are some of the most important determinants of competition. At the level of demand, demand surge in developing countries and a dip in demand, in developed countries are the major issues.


References

Chauhan, S.P.S. (2010), Macroeconomics: An Advanced Treatise, New Delhi: Learning Private Limited

Inkpen Andrew and Moffett Michael (2011), Global Oil & Gas Industry, Tulsa, OK: PennWell Corporation

Mitchell, John, Marcel, Valerie, and Mitchell, Beth (2012), What Next for the Oil and Gas Industry?, London: Chatham House

Randall, Scott (2008), Energy, Risk, and Competitive Advantage, Tulsa, OK: PennWell Corporation


 

Friday, 30 May 2014 09:57

Chosen Scientist: Chen-Ning Yang

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Chosen Scientist: Chen-Ning Yang


 

Chen-Ning Yang is one of the most reputable physicists from the People’s Republic of China.   He is a distinguished professor of physics, and has greatly influenced me in numerous ways. In my daily undertakings, I look up to this scientist as my greatest role model. Since his days as an undergraduate in China, Professor Yang has made outstanding contributions to the field of physics and science at large. I aim to be a recipient of the Nobel Prize for Physics at some point in life just as Professor Yang did in the 1950s. This scientist has always been distinguished in all the different universities where he has worked.


He has received numerous accolades in the United States (Yang 76), Russia, and also in China. As a young physicist, I am greatly inspired by his achievements. This is why I always read his publications, and learn from his excellent achievements in physics. In the journey towards these exceptional achievements, this scientist has experienced numerous challenges. For instance, there was political unrest in China when Professor Yang was in elementary and high school.


This disrupted the normal educational program in most schools but Yang was courageous enough to study extensively.Apart from political unrest, Yang was also faced with the challenge of inadequate research facilities during his undergraduate program (Yang 61). However, this was not a stumbling block towards his rise to the highest echelons of excellence in science. I have been strongly inspired by Yang’s resilience and quest for academic excellence despite the numerous stumbling blocks he faced.  Moving to the United States was also not a simple task to Yang especially due to the language barriers. However, Yang overcame these problems, and has even been granted American citizenship.


 

Part 2: Online Physics Class (http://www.physicsclassroom.com/Class/)

This website has excellent free lessons on almost all topics in physics. The numerous lessons have been planned systematically in order to ensure that the reader obtains adequate information on each topic. From the fundamental concepts to the technical topics, this online resource meets the needs of any physics students. One of the most outstanding aspects of this online class is that the lessons have been provided into formats. The first format is based on written information. The second format in which information on this website has been presented is a visual platform for each lesson. In view of these platforms, the online class uses a holistic approach towards the enhancement of knowledge in physics.There are various reasons why I chose this online resource. Firstly, it has an excellent user-interface that enhances the framework of navigation.


Any user can easily navigate through the website, and this is an essential attribute of online learning resources. The second aspect that has contributed towards selecting this website is that it is free.Users of these online resources are not charged irrespective of the time spent on it. This is an incredible attribute because it underlines the website’s dedication towards enhancing or promoting knowledge in physics. This is different from most online resources that have the tendency to charge a lot of dollars for access into the different lessons. The integration of both written and visual communication platforms is another attribute that has contributed towards me selecting the website. Excellent explanations on different topics in physics have been provided in the videos.


 

References

The Physics Classroom (2013), Physics tutorial, accessed on 21st November 2013 from             http://www.physicsclassroom.com/Class/

Yang, Chen. Selected papers, World Scientific Publishing Company, 2013


 

Friday, 30 May 2014 09:40

EMS Case Study

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EMS Case Study


Regulatory and Accreditation Standards

In view of the insights provided in the case study, several regulatory and accreditation standards are evident. The response time for patients has been highlighted as a vital accreditation standard in the case study. When the ailing patient called 911 to report her symptoms, the nearest ambulance from a local hospital was dispatched to her residence immediately.The response time was less than thirty minutes, and this was instrumental in the effective management of the patient’s symptoms.


The regulatory standards documented in the case study have strongly accentuated on the extensive significance of responding to patients without any delay. The response time can make the ultimate difference in terms of saving a life and mortality (McConnell, 2011). Precision in data collection is another essential accreditation standard evident in the case study. The medical staff responsible for attending or responding to any patient must uphold high standards of accuracy while collecting data. This involves all details about the patient such as the symptoms, and response to treatment.


Such data must be the main basis of decision making within the framework of treating a patient.The collected data must also be used as the basis for planning the improvement of organizational performance (Reilly, 2010). This is because data ensures that the changes are consistent with actual organizational needs. Continuum in care is another vital regulatory standard evident in the case study. This accreditation standard requires that continuity should be maintained within the treatment framework of a patient even while being transferred from an ambulance to the specialized care facility or emergency unit.


 Strategies and Mechanisms Applied in Meeting the Accreditation Standards

Several mechanisms have been applied in meeting the various accreditation standards outlined in the case study. One of these strategies is to ensure that the response time for patients is minimized as much as possible. After the patient had called 911, it took less than half an hour for ambulance services to reach her. The nearest ambulance was assigned to the patient. This strategy was instrumental in minimizing the time taken to respond. Effective communication among the involved paramedics and other medical staff was another vital strategy that facilitated for the attainment of the regulatory standard of continuum in care (Goldsmith, 2005).


The paramedics were in close contact with cardiologists and other specialists in view of the patient’s condition. Due to effective communications, an excellent continuum in care was maintained during the course of treating the patient (Morrow, 2008). The different medical staff members were well-informed about the significance of maintaining accuracy while collecting data. This strategy catered for precision as the medical staff members were taking data from the patient. The competence levels of the entire medical team at the community hospital and the EMS were exceptional. This was an instrumental strategy towards stabilizing the patient’s condition.


 Appropriateness of the Strategies

The strategies used to meet the regulatory and accreditation standards were appropriate considering the circumstances. One of the most notable aspects that indicate the strategies’ appropriateness is the patient outcome. After the integration of these strategies into the treatment framework, the patient outcome was strongly enhanced. Another aspect that shows the appropriateness of the strategies is the prevention of time wastage as the patient was being treated. An excellent continuum was maintained and this helped in ensuing that the patient’s overall condition was put in control.


 References

Goldsmith, S. B. (2005). Principles of health care management, Sudbury, MA: Jones &    Bartlett Learning

McConnell, C. P. (2011). Management principles for health care professionals, Sudbury,   MA: Jones & Bartlett Learning

Morrow, C. (2008). Public health administration, Sudbury, MA: Jones & Bartlett   Learning

Reilly, M. J. (2010). Health care emergency management, Sudbury, MA: Jones & Bartlett Learning


 

Saturday, 24 May 2014 13:57

Medical Billing Fraud

Written by

Medical Billing Fraud


1. Improve current practice

More than never before, the medical practice of the modern day’s places physicians with greater demands and responsibilities as seen in the complex medical services, need to see a large number of patients and follow the strict regulatory rules. These challenges leave them with little time for billing and coding. Yet there is the need to keep adequate medical records that accurately charge insurers and use the appropriate billing codes as part of the financial condition of medical practice. Physicians rely on billing companies and office staff with the task of processing medical billing, and they do not do follow-ups or review bills before giving them to insurers for payment.


This practice has also seen some physicians being paid what they do not deserve because they are not involved in sufficiently overseeing medical billing pattern and coding practices. This article will address this practice in healthcare institutions. By showing the importance of collective auditing and monitoring of medical records and documenting of billing codes as a strategy towards reducing billing errors and attainment of compliance. Physicians have to be involved in this process so as to avoid financial risks such as loss of revenue, disciplinary action, financial sanction, exclusion from a government program partnership and financial sections.


Doctors can change their way of practice by involving patients and families in the ordering process. For instance when a doctor orders services and treatments, the patient has to know the particular aspects of this order instead of the current procedure where doctors directly send the orders to labs and other healthcare facilities. Involving patients will enable them to participate in right billing processes by confirming their treatment and that what is written on their medical records. From this action research, it will be a wakeup call for physicians, managers and leaders of healthcare organizations to take a personal responsibility in fighting fraudulent activities within their reach. They will be informed of their tasks in proactively conducting their businesses on high ethical standards.


Organizations will have a code o business ethics and conduct that require its members to report suspected abuse, fraud and waste. Therefore, the medical healthcare field will be the committee to correction, detection, waste, and abuse and fraud prevention in all their programs. Organizations will have to work closely and in collaboration with other health departments and insurers in designing procedures, and policies that help in the attainment of these objectives. Individual organization will have a role in enforcing theses procedures and policies through awareness, training and investigations efforts.


 How project impact on medical filed

Fraud impacts negatively to all sectors of healthcare. It leads to increased healthcare costs and taxpayers and patients are required to pay high premiums, compromise to healthcare quality and high costs in providing care. Dealing with fraud through action research studies like this one will inspire health care organizations to develop Special Investigation units that will investigate and monitor activities of their healthcare plans. These units will work close with the federal and state law enforcement agencies, provider community and insurance companies in preventing and detecting healthcare fraud. The staff members of the Special Investigations Units comprise of claims, investigator, clinical professionals, and trained data analysts who will closely watch abusive practices and detect fraudulent activities.


 practical implications

Through this action research, Tenet Healthcare Corporation will manage to suppress underperformance by learning how fraudulent billings occur and how to become a successful healthcare that follows the footsteps of its peers using analytics. This action research will begin by defining issues and setting the desired outcomes. To become useful the action research will ask questions not only those based on the subject matter data, but also data which targets the focus and objectives of in Tenet Healthcare Corporation, from the progress and performance perspective.Through learning from other top performance in the industry, it will be possible for in Tenet Healthcare Corporation to follow the right action path and establish a high functioning and competencylevel in analytics. Therefore resulting to meeting the management needs of this healthcare organization in cutting down cost of healthcare. This way the organization will understand the importance of analytics competency in gaining competitive advantage.


Members will also understand how top performing organizations use analytics to create differentiation, influence outcomes and boosts revenue growth. The organization will understand best practices to keep them accelerating or starting the journey of analytics competency on medical health billing records. Placing emphasis on regulatory presence through this action research will results into additional oversight, governance and accountability among the physicians at in Tenet Healthcare Corporation. The use of appropriate analytics in medical billing gives the organization better insights for achieving better outcome and demonstrating value, such as use of cheaper medical technologies and treatments, thus creating value to patients and their families (Baker, and Baker, 2010).


 Reference

Baker, J and Baker, R (2010) Health Care Finance: Basic Tools for Nonfinancial

Managers. Jones and Bartlett Publishers, Boston, Massachusetts.



Regional Trade Agreements versus Global Trade Liberalization


 The world has become largely globalized, and the desire for trade liberalization has intensified.  Countries are engaging in regional trade agreements, as well as global trade liberalization endeavors so as to improve national welfare and have a positive impact on development. The paper takes analyzes regional trade agreements versus global trade liberalization with the intention of.Regional Trade Agreements (RTA) is reciprocal trade agreements between two or additional country partners. RTAs remove all barriers of trade and foreign investments that may have otherwise been hindering business processes across the involved countries.


RTA is beneficial to companies that are equal in terms of economic viability (Freund, & Ornelas, 2010). However, RTAs between countries that are unmatched, e.g. a rich and poor economy country means that the rich economy country may benefit more from the trade agreement than the poor country. When a poor country gets into a regional trade agreement with an economically stable country, the poor nation may be affected with some of the rules that the agreement may bring forth. For instance, the RTA may rule that countries should not use import tariffs.


Whereas such as rule may be beneficial for the rich country it may be detrimental for the poor country that needed to safeguard their emerging industries from being pushed out of the market through cheap imports (Moe-Lobeda & Spencer, 2009; Taifeng, 2009). It is preferable, therefore, for developing countries to unite and work together and have their strengths in numbers against decisions that developed countries may make. In most instances, developed countries will pass regulations that will favor them.Critics of RTA have argued that RTA does not necessarily improve the welfare of member states as dominant members may push for the removal or inclusion of tariffs that favor them.


For instance, dominant states in a RTA may push for the removal of tariffs that may subsequently lead to trade diversion as imports may shift away from efficient suppliers to nations receiving preferential treatment (Wilson, 2012). Such a move would result to inefficient production that may affect bloc non-members. RTA can also affect members through strategies such as price adjustments that may lead to consumer surplus (Zeng, 2010).Global trade liberalization is the removal of all trade barriers and practices that interfere with the free flow of goods and services across nations. Global trade liberalization ensures the removal of tariffs such as duties and export subsidies.


It also ensures that non-tariff barriers such as licenses and quotas are also eliminated (Urata, 2002). Global trade liberalization ascertains the global flow of goods, and services hence an essential driver of global economic growth and development. According to Bouet, (2006) global trade liberalization is expected to act positively on development and poverty reduction. Liberalization of trade is expected to improve agricultural prices, for instance, hence raise activity and payments in agriculture, in developing nations. Most developing nations depend on the agricultural sector in which trade distortions are high. Global trade liberalization is likely to lead to higher world agricultural prices thus benefits to developing nations.


Other industries such as textile and apparels are also bound to improve and give developing countries a comparative advantage. Critics, however, argue that global trade liberalization can lead to a shrink in government transfers due to the elimination of trade-related taxes. Liberalization can also affect terms of trade due to price adjustments. Price adjustments also have the potency of exposing nations to short-run risk arising from competition and reallocation of productive factors (Jones, 2006). 


Reference

 Bouet, A. (2006). How much will trade liberalization help the poor? International food policy research institute. Research brief No. 5

Freund, C. Ornelas, E. (2010). Regional trade agreements. Policy research working paper 5314. The world Bank development research group

Jones, E. (2006). Europe's market liberalization is a bad model for a global trade agenda. Journal Of European Public Policy13(6), 943-957. Doi: 10.1080/13501760600838714

Moe-Lobeda, C. D., & Spencer, D. T. (2009). Free Trade Agreements and the Neo-Liberal Economic Paradigm: Economic, Ecological, and Moral Consequences. Political Theology10(4), 685-716. Doi:10.1558/poth.v10i4.685

Taifeng, C. (2009). Regional trade agreements vs. multilateral trading system. NUPI working paper 762. Department of international economics

Urata, S. (2002). Globalization and the Growth in Free Trade Agreements. Asia-Pacific Review9(1), 20-32. Doi: 10.1080/13439000220141569

Wilson, J. D. (2012). Resource security: a new motivation for free trade agreements in the Asia-Pacific region. Pacific Review25(4), 429-453. Doi:10.1080/09512748.2012.685098

Zeng, K. (2010). Multilateral versus Bilateral and Regional Trade Liberalization: explaining China's pursuit of free trade agreements (FTAs). Journal of Contemporary China19(66), 635-652. Doi:10.1080/10670564.2010.485400


 

Regional Trade Agreements versus Global Trade Liberalization


 The world has become largely globalized, and the desire for trade liberalization has intensified.  Countries are engaging in regional trade agreements, as well as global trade liberalization endeavors so as to improve national welfare and have a positive impact on development. The paper takes analyzes regional trade agreements versus global trade liberalization with the intention ofRegional Trade Agreements (RTA) is reciprocal trade agreements between two or additional country partners.


RTAs remove all barriers of trade and foreign investments that may have otherwise been hindering business processes across the involved countries. RTA is beneficial to companies that are equal in terms of economic viability (Freund, & Ornelas, 2010). However, RTAs between countries that are unmatched, e.g. a rich and poor economy country means that the rich economy country may benefit more from the trade agreement than the poor country. When a poor country gets into a regional trade agreement with an economically stable country, the poor nation may be affected with some of the rules that the agreement may bring forth. For instance, the RTA may rule that countries should not use import tariffs.


Whereas such as rule may be beneficial for the rich country it may be detrimental for the poor country that needed to safeguard their emerging industries from being pushed out of the market through cheap imports (Moe-Lobeda & Spencer, 2009; Taifeng, 2009). It is preferable, therefore, for developing countries to unite and work together and have their strengths in numbers against decisions that developed countries may make. In most instances, developed countries will pass regulations that will favor them.Critics of RTA have argued that RTA does not necessarily improve the welfare of member states as dominant members may push for the removal or inclusion of tariffs that favor them.


For instance, dominant states in a RTA may push for the removal of tariffs that may subsequently lead to trade diversion as imports may shift away from efficient suppliers to nations receiving preferential treatment (Wilson, 2012). Such a move would result to inefficient production that may affect bloc non-members. RTA can also affect members through strategies such as price adjustments that may lead to consumer surplus (Zeng, 2010).Global trade liberalization is the removal of all trade barriers and practices that interfere with the free flow of goods and services across nations. Global trade liberalization ensures the removal of tariffs such as duties and export subsidies.


It also ensures that non-tariff barriers such as licenses and quotas are also eliminated (Urata, 2002). Global trade liberalization ascertains the global flow of goods, and services hence an essential driver of global economic growth and development. According to Bouet, (2006) global trade liberalization is expected to act positively on development and poverty reduction. Liberalization of trade is expected to improve agricultural prices, for instance, hence raise activity and payments in agriculture, in developing nations. Most developing nations depend on the agricultural sector in which trade distortions are high.


Global trade liberalization is likely to lead to higher world agricultural prices thus benefits to developing nations. Other industries such as textile and apparels are also bound to improve and give developing countries a comparative advantage. Critics, however, argue that global trade liberalization can lead to a shrink in government transfers due to the elimination of trade-related taxes. Liberalization can also affect terms of trade due to price adjustments. Price adjustments also have the potency of exposing nations to short-run risk arising from competition and reallocation of productive factors (Jones, 2006).


 Reference

 Bouet, A. (2006). How much will trade liberalization help the poor? International food policy research institute. Research brief No. 5

Freund, C. Ornelas, E. (2010). Regional trade agreements. Policy research working paper 5314. The world Bank development research group

Jones, E. (2006). Europe's market liberalization is a bad model for a global trade agenda. Journal Of European Public Policy13(6), 943-957. Doi: 10.1080/13501760600838714

Moe-Lobeda, C. D., & Spencer, D. T. (2009). Free Trade Agreements and the Neo-Liberal Economic Paradigm: Economic, Ecological, and Moral Consequences. Political Theology10(4), 685-716. Doi:10.1558/poth.v10i4.685

Taifeng, C. (2009). Regional trade agreements vs. multilateral trading system. NUPI working paper 762. Department of international economics

Urata, S. (2002). Globalization and the Growth in Free Trade Agreements. Asia-Pacific Review9(1), 20-32. Doi: 10.1080/13439000220141569

Wilson, J. D. (2012). Resource security: a new motivation for free trade agreements in the Asia-Pacific region. Pacific Review25(4), 429-453. Doi:10.1080/09512748.2012.685098

Zeng, K. (2010). Multilateral versus Bilateral and Regional Trade Liberalization: explaining China's pursuit of free trade agreements (FTAs). Journal of Contemporary China19(66), 635-652. Doi:10.1080/10670564.2010.485400


 

Saturday, 24 May 2014 08:59

Ethics in Business

Written by

Ethics in Business


Ethical business practices drive organizations to great heights as the organization engages in organizations practices that are appropriate.  Ethical practices are inculcated in an organization through human resource. Leaders are responsible for the organizational outlook and overall performance of the company. Ethical leaders drive the organization to success as employees emulate their leaders. In contrast, unethical leaders engage in practices that benefit their selfish interest thus interfering with the overall performance of the organization.


 Ethical and Unethical Leadership

Ethical practices within an organization emanate from ethical leaders who integrate ethical and ethical cultures among employees. Organizations with leaders practicing ethics are bound to realize increased efficiency in its operations, as well as efficient decision making. Similarly, companies that are ethical are bound to have enhanced employee commitment, customer loyalty and improved financial performance. A company that upholds ethical practices is bound to encourage ethical conformity among its employees.


Employees will thus perform their duties and make organizations decisions that integrate ethical considerations (Kaufmann, 2012). Ethical leaders can establish shared values that influence the ethical behavior of employees, which in turn will result to an improvement of relationships with customers, investors, and suppliers. Ethical leaders will influence individuals and groups within the organization to attain organization goals from the ethical perspective. As an ethical leader, CEOs, for instance, play a crucial role of transmitting and diffusing values, norms and codes of ethics among employees. Overall, ethical leaders promote organizational commitments to the quality production of goods and services; enhance employee committee and helps in developing an ethical organizational climate.


Companies with leaders that are unethical and engage in unethical practices are bound to have a negative effect on organizational performance. Unethical leaders use their power and authority in a manner that serves their own selfish interests. These leaders are also manipulative and controlling. Unfortunately, these factors affect the overall organizational performance as employees are not motivated to perform. Employees working under such leaders may lose their morale to work and instead focus on seeking alternative jobs (Kalshoven, 2009). The turnover rate is thus higher in such organizations compared to organizations that have ethical leaders. The actions of a leader influences employee behavior thus the likelihood of an unethical leader to influence employees to engage in unethical practices.


 Consequence of Unethical Business Practices

 It is an undeniable fact that a leader’s actions have a direct impact on the attitude and behavior of those that they lead. Leaders engaging in unethical practices risk arrest, prosecution and revocation of their professional licenses. Leaders involved in unethical practices are often held accountable for their actions once they are discovered. The psychological trauma involved in cases of Unethical business practices can affect a person’s well-being.  


There is also the risk of financial loss as a result of fines and penalties for engagement in unethical practices (Kaufmann, 2012). Leaders who engage in unethical practices can also affect the operations and sale of product and services manufactured in the organization. This is especially so, if the details of unethical practices are made public and customer begin to shy away from the organization and its products. Organizations found to have leaders engaging in unethical practices is also bound to lose existing and potential investors. Investors are usually aware of the high risk of getting involved with organizations engaged in unethical conduct.


 Social responsibility and performance

Organizations that are successful must create an organizational culture that encourages employees to become increasingly dedicated and committed to the organization. Employees can engage in social responsibility initiatives as a way of making a difference in their community and the organization. Whole Foods is an example of an organization that has succeeded to participate in socially responsible initiatives. Whole Foods is leading in practices involving sourcing for food products responsibly. Whole Foods has always been at the forefront in finding innovative solutions to protect and improve the environment.


Whole Foods commitment to the sale of organic foods improves the sustainability of the agriculture industry. The company’s commitment to organic foods has also enabled the company be at the forefront in the fight against the use of pesticides and its effects on pollution, as well as land degradation practices such as expansive monoculture. In 2006, Whole Foods managed to offset 100% its energy costs by turning to wind power as an alternative form of energy. In 2008, Whole Foods eliminated the use of plastic bags for packaging purposes.


 Whole Foods effort at conserving the environment has seen it gain global recognition for its business strategy. Environmentally savvy persons have moved to Whole Foods as they identify with organizations that participate in environmental conservation exercises. Whole Foods also participates in philanthropy by contributing at least 5% of its annual profits to the community. These funds are used to support members of the community, as well as support programs such as the Whole Kids Foundation. Companies, such as Whole Foods that participate in various social responsible initiatives are able to inter-connect their organizational goals with their community service initiatives. In the end, the organization is able to attain it organizational objectives while at the same time serve the community (Bello, 2012).


 Leadership qualities of an ethical business leader

 Ethical leaders are receptive, open and possess leadership traits such as integrity, honesty and trust. Ethical leaders with these qualities set standards of performance that are in light to appropriate ethical behavior. These ethical standards form the basis of organizational performance. Employees thus execute their duties based on already set ethical standards. An ethical leader also has mediating qualities. The ethical leader plays a mediating role in the relationship between culture within the organization and expected employee outcomes. As a mediator, the leader is bound to bring out a leader’s effectiveness and willingness to put extra effort to have a task completed. This will ultimately lead to increased job performance.  Ethical leaders also lead by example by performing their duties in line with existing ethical standard.


Employees follow their leaders and an ethical leader will provide employees with an ideal example to emulate (Bello, 2012). Ethical leaders cultivate the spirit of accountability hence employees perform their duties in line with expected ethical standards. Ethical leaders are also open to communication. It is through communication and sharing of ideas that an organization is able to move forward. Ethical leaders involve themselves with employees in an effort to establish ideal strategies that can be integrated within the company. An organization is bound to thrive if it integrates its employees in establishing elaborate business strategies. Employees are committed to working in environments where they acquire the sense of belonging (Kalshoven, 2009).


Conclusion

Ethical leaders embrace ethical practices that they integrate into their organizational operations. Organizations that are ethical participate in activities that are beneficial for the organization and the surrounding community. Ethical practices serve as the platform for organizations that desire to prosper.


Reference

Bello, S. (2012). Impact of ethical leadership on employee job performance. International journal of business and social science. Vol. 3(11); 228

Kalshoven, K. (2009). Ethical; leader behavior and leader effectiveness. International journal of leadership studies. Vol. 5(2); 101

Kaufmann, M. (2012). The impact of corporate social responsibility on business.  The Berlin international economics congress


 

Saturday, 24 May 2014 08:37

Minnetonka Warehouse

Written by

 Minnetonka warehouse


 Wayne Schuler is the manager of Minnetonka warehouse. His current concern is the number of employees that are expected to handle the task of unloading dock. He learned that he has to pay stiff penalties when the trucks spend a lot of time at the docks before unloading. He had to pay much to the motor carriers for providing deliveries services. In order to solve this problem, Wayne had to add the number of crews at the dock to help in unloading, but he realized that most of the crew members had to spend a lot of time dealing as they wait, for other trucks, to come for unloading. In order to address this problem, Wayne remembered the queuing theory that he had learned in college.


 Thesis statement

Queuing theory is an analysis approach of probabilities that are related to waiting in line for customers, orders and arrival pattern. The common situation is that as per the average, a warehouse facility can experience excess capacity, and often the facility is more than full with a lot of work to be accomplished (Mentzer, 2001). The backlog of work is always associated with costs as well as penalties that need to be pay. It can also make customers walk away and never come back. When a company expands its capacity, then the waiting times are reduced a. When the cost increases, there is the need to pay for the facility even when it’s idling. The queuing theory is essential for establishing the best capacity level that will lead to minimize costs for service provision and costs for individual in need to use the service.


 Purpose of paper

This paper will look at how the queuing theory can help Wayne Shuller in reducing the costs of manning his Minnetonka warehouse. The essay will present calculations on the expected number of tracks waiting, in a queue, to be unloaded, the expected time in queuing and the expected time that a truck will wait in line to be unloaded, probability that the truck may fail to be unloaded and whether Wayne has to rent a forklift (Murphy, and Wood 2010).


 Question A

In determining the number of tracks waiting at the queue, Wayne has to consider the following facts. First is that trucks randomly arrive at the dock at an average rate of 4 per hour, with a deviation of minus or plus one. Two warehouse workers can unload at a rate of one for every 12 minutes or five per hour. A team of four warehouse workers can unload at a rate of ten per hour or 1 for every 6 minutes. A warehouse worker is paid $ 14 for every hour and has to be paid for the whole shift or cannot be assigned other duties in the warehouse as per the union rules.


 Team Size        Service Rate    Formula           Trucks in Queue

2                      5/ hr                 42/5                             3.200

3                      8/ hr                 42/32                           .500

4                       10/ hr               42/60                          .267

5                      11/ hr               42/133                         .120


  Question B the probability that a truck can be unloaded is shown in the calculations below:

Team Size        Service Rate                Formula                      Probability to wait

2                                   5/ hr                (.8/1) X 100     80%

3                                  8/ hr                 (.125/.25) X 100          50%

4                                  10/ hr               (.067/.167) X 100        40.11%

5                                  11/ hr               (.030/.10) X 100          30%


 Question C

The following calculations show, which of the four work team sizes will cost Wayne the lowest cost

Team Size       Service Rate                Total Cost

2                      5/ hr                             $268

3                       8/ hr                            $102

4                      10/ hr                           $96

5                       11/ hr                         $95.32


 Question D

If Wayne considers renting a forklift and a two-person crew, he will have to pay a cost of $38 for every hour. When compared with the lowest cost in answers for question 4, then Wayne is required to hire the forklift and adopt the two-man crew. This is because a team of two men crew will not manage to unload trucks at the eight per hour rate or one having to use 7.5 minutes in unloading. Also a team of five warehouse workers will be expensive, and they will also not manage to unload trucks of one for 4.45 minutes or 11 per hour rate.


 Conclusion

This study has shown how Queuing theory can be applied in real life situation. The discussions above have shown the major elements include arrival, queue, service and outlet. Therefore, Wayne can effectively manage his warehouse by looking, at the elements of this theory, to save cost and reduce waiting time. 


Reference

Mentzer, J (2001) Supply Chain Management. Sage publisher, p 214

Murphy, P and Wood D (2010) Contemporary logistics. Prentice Hall, p 152-153



Saturday, 24 May 2014 08:21

Employment Testing

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Employment Testing


Employment testing refers to any pre-employment test or assessment that is designed to measure a candidate’s knowledge, skills, abilities or behaviors. Employment testing is a critical but often overlooked component of the selection process. This oversight is often fueled by misconceptions maintained by those in operations and human resources. For instance, some business owners, managers, and human resource personnel believe that interviews provide sufficient information for selection.


Other unfounded beliefs are that testing is too expensive to add value testing unduly dwindles the applicant pool, and testing is a legal risk. These misconceptions often keep companies from realizing the vast benefits of employment testing. Employment testing is also used to facilitate employment development. However, employment testing offers companies strategic advantage in terms of the ability to select those applicants who fit the company culture and job requirement accurately, to develop employees in key areas, and to retain employees longer.  The goal of any organization when using a selection test or assessment is to improve the ability to predict performance.  


Organizations want to assess accurately and objectively the candidate’s ability and desire to effectively. Some of the quoted benefits of testing during selection include: it increases selection objectivity, increases the ability to predict a candidate’s performance, enables the interviewer to target areas for follow-up, act as the basis for employee development in the future and provides strong return to investment. The purpose of this paper is to explore the role of testing in relation to the selection during staffing.  The findings of this paper are based on a literature review conducted from academic databases such as the Ebscohost and Proquest.


According to Ajila and Okafor (2012), the objective of testing particularly for staff recruitment, selection and placement is to solicit further information to assess the employee’s suitability to the job.  Therefore, employment testing is the practice of administering written, oral or other tests as a means of determining the fitness or desirability of a job applicant.  The underlying reason is that if test scores of the applicants’ correlates with job performance, then, it is economically viable for an employer to select employees based on the scores from that test.  As a result, employment or selection tests must be validated, or the jobs they are being used to hire for, and for the purpose for which they are being used.   


According to Ajila & Okafor (2012), standardized testing is the most effective way to hire great performers who would help organizations make profit, avoid costly hiring mistakes, reduce employee turnover and improve training programme results. Giumetti and Sinar (2012) note that the use of employment tests has gained prevalence within organizations. Their applications have extended the ordinary use as screening tools for external applicants, to encompass internal promotions or transfer decisions.There are numerous types of pre-employment testing processes. Screening instruments have been designed to measure behavioral traits such as intelligence abilities, job-specific skills, expressive stability, personality, and self-control.


There are three main types of tests that include intelligence, personality and simulation.  Intelligence or cognitive tests are used to measure an applicant’s ability to think and solve problems and can be used in verbal intelligent testing   and non-verbal intelligence testing. They ca n be further classified into mechanical aptitude, clerical aptitude, and spatial aptitude. Proponents of the use of cognitive ability tests offer as the primary basis for their enthusiasm the ubiquitous and robust validity of these instruments across all jobs.   Cognitive tests measures memory skills, reading comprehension, math skills, and reasoning. They have proven to provide significant predictive validity with respect to the productivity and success of employees in an organizational setting.


 They often correlate with measures of job performance across many jobs (Outtz, 2002).Personality attributes are widely recognized as contributors to job success. There are numerous commercially available instruments for measuring personality characteristics.  The history of personality testing has evolved from testing for psychopathology to testing for problem tic employees.   Currently most personality tests are used to measure the applicant’s emotional adjustment and attitudes. These tests often evaluate interpersonal relationship and into see how an applicant might fit into the organization.  


According to Tett & Simonet (2011), personality tests are often challenged by the issue of faking. Describing oneself, truthfully or not, entails a complex set of cognitive processes, including storage and retrieval of self-images based on the experiences in diverse situations.   It requires veridical self-knowledge, conferred in part by the cognitive ability.  Faking in personality tests arises from two main opportunities to fake. The first is the availability of a test on which it is possible to fake. The second is when the test taker scores below the highest possible scores on a given scale. However, personality tests remain an integral part of pre-employment tests.


 References

Ajila, C. O., & Okafor, L. (2012). EMPLOYMENT TESTING AND HUMAN RESOURCE MANAGEMENT. IFE Psychologia, 20(2), 91-98.

Outtz, J. L. (2002). The Role of Cognitive Ability Tests in Employment Selection. Human Performance, 15(1/2), 161-171.

Tett, R. P., & Simonet, D. V. (2011). Faking in Personality Assessment: A 'Multisaturation' Perspective on Faking as Performance. Human Performance, 24(4), 302-321. Doi:10.1080/08959285.2011.597472


 

Challenges Facing the Human resource Department


The human resource department remains one of the core departments in any organization that wants to succeed in the modern business environment. The human resource department is mandated with managing one of the most crucial resources in any organization. It is the responsibility of the human resource department to manage the workforce, to train and meet their basic needs for the organization to achieve competitive advantage in the 21st century.


 Due  to the rapid changes in the business world, globalization change in customer tastes and habits, new techniques of production, employees are currently facing a different kind of problems, in order to cope with these challenges, human resource managers are faced with a variety of issues and challenges on how to manage the dynamic human resources.  The purpose of this paper is to explore the biggest challenges facing human resource department in the modern business environment.


 The findings of this paper are based on a literature review conducted from academic articles and journals from major databases such as the EBScohost and the ProQuest.Hameed (2012) conducted a literature review to analyze the priorities of 21st century human resource managers.  Hameed noted that the human resource department is continuously changing. He identified the various scholars and challenges the proposed to be the greatest in human resource.  He identifies the top ten challenges facing human resource department as the retention of workforce, multicultural workforce, globalization, technology, change in the demand of the government, women workforce and the process of change.


 In addition, he pointed out that organizations are facing leadership challenges, organizational effectiveness, change management, compensation and safety issues.  In the light of globalization, the main challenges facing human resources department, therefore, are the diverse workforce, change management and marinating organization effectiveness.According to Castro (2013), the worldwide phenomenon of economic globalization has not only provided different logistic and consumption habits, but also has generated a new workforce environment that is much diverse than ever.


 In the modern business world, managers are supervising employees in different geographic regions globalization has increased movement of labor and technology has increased connectivity in the world. This has created the need for multiculturalism. Diversity and multiculturalism include distinctiveness such as race, traditions, gender, age, belief and disability. Scholars are in agreement that organizations that will embrace and value diversity as an integral part of its value will have a positive impact on individual productivity, organizational effectiveness and sustained competitiveness.  In the increased need for energy and creativity from employees, racism, and sexism are major obstacles.  


Managing a diverse workforce possess a challenge in retaining women, people of color, and other ethnic groups, increased complaints and legal actions, unhealthy tension between people of different age, race, gender and abilities, inability to attract and retain talented workforce, loss of productivity and inadequate communication between employees.    Therefore, human resource managers must remain receptive to new ideas and provide regular feedback to shape goals and objectives of organization in line with the diverse workforce.Change management is the current phenomena in most organizations.  


Most organizations are changing their activities and organizational culture due to the advancement in technology, changing production techniques, changing behaviors of customers, economic changes (Hashim, 2013). These changes are compelling organizations and businesses to change their operations.  Change may be in terms of the organization structure, employees, technology, production techniques, and administration. However, human resources are the core factor in managing change.  Organizational change can develop skepticism and resistance in employees making it difficult or impossible to implement organizational improvements, which are core for long-term sustainability of an organization.


 Human resource department is mandated with understanding resistance and other responses to organizational change. They have to deal with denial, anger, bargaining, depression and acceptance.The effective management of the human resources is a critical component in the success of any organization.  Effective management of human resources leads to positive outcomes such as engagement, commitment, satisfaction and performance (Irfan, 2013).   One of the daunting challenges among human resource managers is to align individual employee’s performance with the organizational strategic objectives.


When employees understand the organizational priorities, they can better contribute by applying their skills to advance the organizational strategic goals. Employees who understand the “big picture” can make decisions that will contribute to the objectives of the firm.  Modern human resources departments are faced with the challenge of facilitating the channeling of individual efforts and talents toward organizational goals. Irfan (2013) notes that organizational effectiveness captures organizational performance advantage linked with more effective or efficient processes and internal measures. Human resources are the backbone of internal processes and measures and contribute immense on organizational effectiveness.


 References

Hashim, M., & Hameed, F. (2012). Human Resource Management in 21st Century: Issues & Challenges & Possible Solutions to Attain Competitiveness. International Journal of Academic Research In Business & Social Sciences, 2(9), 44-52.

Hashim, M. (2013). Change Management. International Journal Of Academic Research In Business & Social Sciences, 3(7), 685-694. Doi:10.6007/IJARBSS/v3-i7/92

Irfan U & Robina Y (2013). The Influence of Human Resource Practices on Internal Customer Satisfaction and Organizational Effectiveness. AUDA, vol. 5, no. 1/2013, pp. 5-38


 

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