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The Management of Human Resources Within Bmw Motorrad

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The management of human resources within BWM Motorrad plays a vital role in aligning the company’s strategic initiatives. The centralised production of all BMW motorcycles at Berlin poses significant advantages as well as disadvantages for a company that sells its motorcycles worldwide. The BMW Motorrad factory at Berlin receives input, such as crankshaft, from the suppliers but these items are simply moulded metal forms. As such the importance of in- house processing/production places a great deal of importance on employee skills. Let us take look at the different aspects of HR at work in BMW Motorrad.

Recruitment & Selection:

BMW hires new personnel during two situations – expansion and employee retirement. The assembly line at BMW Motorrad is semi-automatic. BMW Motorrad has inserted human intervention in-between machine operation which means employee skills is very important for upholding BMA standards. Existing skills of new recruits are not- transferrable to BMW Motorrad as:

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  1. Only one BMW Motorrad plant exists which means internal transfer i.e. in-between plants, is not possible;
  2. The highly customized nature of motorcycles produced by BMW Motorrad means new recruits will never have worked on BMW Motorrad’s products before;

Familiarity with requisite skills such as electrical component testing helps indicate the level of training necessary to get a recruit into production. This also has a reverse effect. Because of the highly customized products at BMW Motorrad, employees’ training is highly focused on BMW Motorrad’s products only which means their skills cannot be transferred elsewhere (as in to another company), which translates into very low churn. As employees stay with the organization longer, the need for fresh talent is low, especially as the plant at Berlin is at full capacity.

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And new recruits generally start at the bottom of the organizational chain. Multiple parts come together in a complex jigsaw puzzle to create a two-wheeled wonder. To be able to oversee and operate at a higher organizational level, it is imperative that employees are well versed with the functions of the lower level. In case of a production plant, nothing beats a hands-on experience. As such it makes sense that BMW Motorrad hires entry level staff only and subsequent trainings and expertise help them rise in ranks within the organization. Employee retirements help the remaining employees pickup promotions. Sometimes retirements might not be followed by a recruitment as job roles converge and absorb multiple vacancies.

Recruitment at BMW Motorrad is highly selective. Primarily because there are very few and time-spread openings. It takes into consideration the existing skills and judges candidates for his/her long-term commitment to the company. The only exception is in the case of expansion when recruitment bars are lowered to capture a significant employee strength and then they are subsequently trained hard. As of today, 5th July 2018, 27 openings exist in Berlin in BMW Group’s Career page and none of them are for the BMW Motorrad unit.

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