Google: a Study in Human Resources

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Appearing in the 100 Best Places to Work for the third consecutive year, Google has become quite a human resources (HR) phenomenon. With numerous articles and studies having been done on them, other companies beginning to follow similar methodologies are on the rise. The company is best known for having developed its own HR function that has helped set it apart in the workforce. Their main focus and reason for a successful organizational culture lies in maximizing employee productivity. They also create an environment in which their employees are encouraged to express new ideas and even receive the training and development they desire. Not only does the company provide their employees with great opportunities in personal and career growth, they also back it up with exceptional benefit packages.

The company is also known for their extraordinary plethora of benefits and perks. Picture free gourmet meals, weekly car washes, a gym and playroom to enjoy during some down time and stress relieving massages while at work. This is a reality for Google employees. These and many more reasons described in the following pages, highlight why Google is worthy of a Study in Human Resources.

Google: A study in Human Resources
Since its creation, the term “Google” has truly revolutionized searching capabilities in the World Wide Web. Today, it is known as one of the most popular and powerful search engines in all of cyberspace. As a technological phenomenon, Google is king. As a company, Google follows the same core values of greatness by proving to hold both its users and employees on a pedestal.

With a philosophy of “Great just is not good enough” (Philosophy, n.d), it is no surprise this organization goes above and beyond the norm to satisfy their external and internal customers. The saying “the customer is always right” rings true in Google with their drive to develop the best possible product for their users; the same also goes for their employees. Offering the best of both worlds: stellar employee benefits AND a work environment rivaled by no other. The productivity level of a Google employee has been recorded to be through the roof. “The average Google employee generates more than $1 million in revenue each year. This metric is a good indicator of how an organization leverages its workforce. Yahoo currently produces just $564,000 per employee, and Microsoft $647,000” (Sullivan, 2007).

For the third consecutive year in a row, Google has been named one of the top 100 Best Companies to work for. “To choose the “100 Best Companies to work for,” FORTUNE conducts the most extensive employee survey in corporate America. More than 81,000 employees from 353 companies responded to a 57-question survey created by the Great Place to Work Institute” (FORTUNES’s “100 Best, n.d.). With the impressive accolade and a growing reputation of maintaining high standards, let’s take a look at what makes Google one of the best places to work.

Overview of the Company
Google was founded in 1998 by Larry Page and Sergey Brin two college students who met at Stanford University. They chose the name based on the mathematical term “googol” which is 1 followed by 100 zeros (Company Overview, n.d.). Because that mathematical term can be compared to large quantities, they chose this name based on their mission statement: “to organize the world’s information universally and make it accessible and useful” (Company Overview, n.d.). When the two founders started the business, the ‘office’ was in a garage. At that time, the only benefits they were able to offer employees were “the washer, dryer, and shower facilities” (The ManageMentor, 2009). Since then they have added numerous attractive benefits to their employees. In 2002 they added an additional 500 employees to the current 200 working for them and every year thereafter increasing their employee base by astounding numbers. Thousands of resumes had to be screened by...
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