The SAS institute was founded in 1976 by Dr. James Goodnight and Dr. John Sall, both professors at North Carolina State University, SAS Institute, Inc. provides business intelligence (BI) software and services at more than 40,000 customer sites worldwide, including 90 percent of the Fortune 500 companies. SAS, which stands for “statistical analysis software,” is headquartered in Cary, North Carolina. It is the world’s largest privately held software company, having over 100 offices worldwide with approximately 10,000 employees. With an unbroken record of growth and profitability, SAS had revenue of $1.18 billion in 2002 and invested about 25 percent of revenues into research and development. SAS has been widely recognized for its work-life programs and emphasis on employee satisfaction. The company’s various honors include being recognized by Working Mothers magazine as one of “100 Best Companies for Working Mothers” and by Fortune magazine as one of the “100 Best Companies to Work for in America.” The Working Mothers recognition has been received 13 times and the Fortune recognition has occurred for six consecutive years. 2. Critically analyse the basic management philosophy that governs employee relation management at SAS. The management culture is a very important factor in the imprinting of a company: it shapes the relationship between working environment and employee satisfaction. SAS’s particular strategy of running the business in which the employees are unbelievably loyal, as a software developer himself, SAS CEO Jim Goodnight knows well that designing software is a creative process, and that SAS’ continued success is built on “products of the mind.” The creativity and puzzle-solving behind great software and the caring professionalism behind great customer service are the most essential resources in an intellectual property enterprise. SAS management believes that workplace culture, company values and employment practices can transform the work experience in ways that are not only good relations but good business. Focusing on people and relationships making employees a top priority leads to more productive, satisfied and dedicated employees. They take care of the company that takes care of them. To achieve that ideal, employees must be stimulated, engaged, appreciated and supported. They need to be trusted and valued, to feel that they make a difference. To support the creative process and balance work and family, they must be offered a flexible work environment that allows them to be the most productive. And they should be freed from many of the distractions and difficulties of day-to-day life, so they can focus on doing their best work. They want good results so they pay their employees competitively, targeted at the average for the software industry. SAS does not provide stock options like other companies in the industry. Instead of relying on high salaries and stock options to attract and retain workers like many software companies do, SAS takes a very different approach. SAS focuses on providing meaningful and challenging work, and it encourages teamwork. SAS also provides a host of benefits that appeal to the employees and help keep them satisfied. As one employee who took a 10 percent pay cut to join SAS said: “It’s better to be happy than to have a little more money. Employees are given the freedom, flexibility, responsibility, and resources to do their jobs, and they are also held accountable for results. Managers know what employees are doing and they work alongside them, writing computer code. The company employs very few external contractors and very few part-time staff, so there is a strong sense of teamwork throughout the organization. SAS employees are clearly involved in their work. One employee, Kathy Passarella, notes that: “When you walk down the halls here, it’s rare that you hear people talking about anything but work.” Clearly, human resource management at SAS is a...
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