The main theme of this book is that HRM is not just the job of a central HR department, but rather the responsibility of every manager. Perhaps nowhere is this more apparent than in a typical small service business. The owner/manager usually has no HR staff on whom to rely. However, the success of his or her enterprise (not to mention his or her family’s peace of mind) often depends largely on the effectiveness of the processes through which employees are recruited, hired, trained, evaluated, and rewarded. Therefore, to help illustrate the HRM responsibilities of all managers and ways in which they can be handled effectively, we have included an ongoing saga—a continuing case based on a small business in southwestern Ontario. In the segment of the case at the end of each chapter, the main character—Jennifer Carter—will be confronted with HR challenges that must be resolved by applying the concepts and techniques discussed in that particular chapter.
In order to answer questions arising in the incidents at the end of subsequent chapters, the following background information is required:
Carter Cleaning Centres Jennifer Carter graduated with a degree in Business Administration from Northern University in June of 2000 and, after considering several job offers, decided to do what she had really always planned: go into business with her father, Jack.
Jack Carter opened his first laundromat in 1980 and his second in 1982. The main attraction of these coin laundry businesses to him was that they were capital- rather than labour-intensive. Once the investment in machinery was made, the laundromat could be operated with just one unskilled attendant and none of the labour problems one normally associates with being in the retail 42 Part 1 Human Resources Management in Perspective
service business. The attractiveness of operating with virtually no skilled labour notwithstanding, in 1986 Jack decided to expand the...