Case Synopsis: A Steely Resolve

Topics: Recession, Decision making, Organizational studies and human resource management Pages: 2 (324 words) Published: October 16, 2013
Case Synopsis: A Steely Resolve

Nucor is a steel manufacturing company that makes steel by recycling used metals and reforming them into new beams and sheets. Nucor has long had a reputation as a good place to work, although its human resource management policies have generated some controversy. Employees are paid by how much they produce, the more they produce the more they make. Yearly bonuses are based on overall company performance. Employees can choose how hard they work and have a good deal of decision making authority. The company gives employees final say on issues such as halting the process when an error is detected or a possible equipment failure may occur. Further, employees have a significant voice in matters of company policy that affect them. The company has a no-layoff policy, but employees feel the effects of a recession in their paychecks. The current recession has reduced orders at Nucor by 50%, which means employees are seeing up to a 46% reduction in their take-home pay, a bite that most of them cannot afford.

Nucor is using this slow period to catch up on and get ahead of maintenance, to write and revise safety manuals and to replace contract companies who did work such as landscape care and janitorial service with regular Nucor employees. By doing these things they help sustain their employees through this difficult time and they prepare their manufacturing plants to gear up quickly to meet increasing demand as the recession ends. Nucor has traditionally enjoyed extremely loyal employees, and they hope that loyalty will sustain the company through this downturn and will celebrate with the company as the economy recovers.


1. What factors likely contribute to employees’ job satisfaction and organizational commitment at Nucor?

2.How would you describe Nucor’s organizational culture?

3. What terminal and instrumental values do you think are important in...
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