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Alignment of HRM and Business Strategies

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HR is an important piece of the puzzle when it comes to the alignment of State Farm’s business strategy. When HR is properly aligned with the business strategy, HR will contribute to the financial bottom line. The HR department can help to ensure that State Farm reaches its goals that have been set within the business strategy. HR can help to forecast the amount of people needed and what skill set will increase productivity. HR can evaluate the current staff to see who can be promoted or which employees need further training to be successful in their position. HR can determine how to recruit top notch performers or if outsourcing is a better option. Change is very necessary to compete and a company that can manage change the most effectively will rise above its competitors. “The HR staff should train the company workforce to figure out how to capitalize on a changing business environment and train company leaders to embrace the opportunities change can bring” (Nielsen, 2014).

The State Farm website lists several positions in its HR department, Analyst, Recruiter, HR Representative and HR Assistant. There were not many positions open to apply for, thus it was difficult to view the job functions of the fore mentioned positions. Bloomington, IL was the only office that has HR positions open currently. HR Business Analyst has numerous duties and they are as follows (StateFarm, 2014): Understand the business processes and needs of customers

Assist business partners with implementation of hardware/software applications Define, analyze, clarify, interpret, and translate detailed business requirements Coordinate and execute the development of test cases and analysis of results Plan, develop, coordinate, and deliver training to appropriate users Analyze and resolve problems through use of automated reporting tools Maintain system applications and tables to meet business partners’ needs and legal requirements Research, evaluate, recommend and document new products, processes, workflows and procedures to provide technical and business solutions for business partners The position of Compensation Analyst is only offered at the State Farm corporate office located in Blooming, IL. The responsibilities of this position are as follows (StateFarm, 2014): Works with business areas to design, develop, analyze, and review positions, including developing job descriptions Develops, designs, implements, and administers compensation and performance assessment policies and programs Interprets policies and counsels business partners on State Farm’s compensation and performance assessment philosophies Completes and conducts analysis of market surveys

Ensures compliance with applicable wage and hour law
The position of Recruiter is currently being offered in San Jose, CA and the responsibilities are listed as follows (StateFarm, 2014): Facilitates established recruitment strategies to identify and recruit qualified candidates for State Farm Agent positions Explains agency opportunity to applicants, completes interviews, and conducts candidate assessment of interested candidates Leverages previously established relationships with colleges/universities and community organizations to identify and recruit qualified candidates Communicates all aspects of the Agency opportunity effectively to a variety of internal business partners (this may include creating, developing, and/or delivering presentations)

The HR Assistant position that is currently open is located in Birmingham, AL and the responsibilities are listed as follows (StateFarm, 2014): Provide assistance to claim handlers by performing a variety of support services (e.g., setting up claim files, filing correspondence, pulling files) Enter electronic claim information (e.g., subrogation, salvage information, and medical bill codes) Update and make corrections to claim files as directed by claim representatives Receive and distribute incoming mail and processes outgoing mail Perform receptionist and/or office switchboard duties as assigned Operate a variety of office equipment, including computers, printers, copy machines, facsimile receiver/transmitter and mailing equipment The position of HR Recruiter is the position that I would prefer. I would excel at the responsibility of choosing which candidates to interview, conducting candidate assessments and effectively explaining State Farm opportunities.

I have intense experience with creating, developing and delivering presentations, so it would be ideal for me to present them to the various internal business partners. This position would allow me to be the first representation of State Farm that new hires will encounter and will allow me to plant the seed of what it takes to be successful with State Farm. The employees not the products or services, will ultimately determine the success of the company (Sparkhouse Consultants). HRM strategies can improve competitive advantages at State Farm by adopting the rational strategic approach. This approach is great for leaders who plan for what they want to accomplish and the employ the human resource practices to help to achieve its goals (Stewart & Brown, 2012).

The result of effectively managing HR is an enhanced ability to attract and retain qualified employees that are motivated to perform. The four targets of FIRM practices that can be used for competitive advantage, the four targets are self (the focal company), customers, distributors/servicers and suppliers. An example is General Electric (self), IBM (customers), PepsiCo (distributors/service) and Baltimore Orioles/ Bell Labs (suppliers). According to MacMillan there are two strategic thrusts Cost Efficient Thrust which is a business like strategy that seeks to produce goods and services inexpensively and the Differentiation which is the process of dividing work tasks so that employees perform specific pieces of the work process, which allows them to specialize (Stewart & Brown, 2012).

Three ways that State Farm can increase diversity is to make the job more captivating to prospective employees by highlighting details that will attract a more diverse candidate pool. By providing diversity training in the workplace, employees should be able to grasp that the hiring decisions are based on finding the best applicant and not by filling quotas. Managers should fully understand the benefits of a diverse workplace, as they will be implementing personnel policies. Configure affinity groups that empower small groups of employees to come up with ideas about cultivating products or branch off into different markets. Companies will get fresh ideas and employees are assured that their differences are assets. (The Wall Street Journal, 2014)


Nielsen, L. (2014, October 8). http://smallbusiness.chron.com/hr-strategies-business-strategies-2624.html. Retrieved from Chron.com: http://smallbusiness.chron.com/hr-strategies-business-strategies-2624.html StateFarm. (2014, October 14). State Farm Careers. Retrieved from State Farm: https://online2-statefarm-com.careerliaison.com/apps/careers/psc/cgprdext/RECRUITING/EREC_EXT/c/HRS_HRAM.HRS_CE.GBL?Page=HRS_CE_JOB_DTL_SFI&Action=A&JobOpeningId=49162&SiteId=1&PostingSeq=1&_CL_SOURCE=32372246&jtsrc=www.indeed.com&jtsrcid=1789&jtrfr=http% Stewart, G. L., & Brown, K. G. (2012). Human Resource Management. Hoboken: John Wiley & Sons. The Wall Street Journal. (2014). Retrieved from The Wall Street Journal: http://guides.wsj.com/management/building-a-workplace-culture/how-to-increase-workplace-diversity/

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