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Staffing and Human Resource Development


Human resource management makes decisions on structures of rewards, deploys training arrangements, assigns decision-rights, sets up teams, and so forth, and such arrangements have considerable impact on the human capital contribution to innovation. According to Waldeck and Leffakis (2007, p.162), the influence of such practices could be modelled both with regard to moderator (practices that strengthen or weaken the link between innovation performance and human capital) as well as mediator (human capital mediates the HR practices influence to innovation performance) paradigms. Basically, communication networks for employees, as partially designed by organizational structure, could have an effect on organisational development. Bailey (2011, p.491) motivational research reveals that the type of innovative behaviours that bring about prosperous innovation is enthused by a number of rewards but abridged by others. Besides that, styles of management, the utilization of feedback, goals setting, the use of projects as well as teams, have all been indicated to influence innovative and creativity behaviours within the organisation. In this regard, the essays seek to provide a critical analysis of Westpac bank’s HRM practices, with regard to staffing and human resource development.

Westpac Background

Westpac Banking Corporation remains to be one of the few banks in Australia together with its main competitors such as Australia and New Zealand Banking Group (ANZ), Commonwealth Bank of Australia (CBA), as well as National Australia Bank (NAB) that have successfully and profitably operated in Australia. Westpac was instituted in 1817 and in 1850 it was merged as the Bank of New South Wales (BNSW). Besides that, Westpac merged with the Commercial Bank of Australia Limited in 1982, established in the 1866, Victoria and renamed itself to Westpac Banking Corporation. According to Westpac (2013), Westpac’s name is rooted from the western Pacific, which is the region the bank has served in the past. Westpac serves more than eight million clients, both commercial as well as retail, and offers insurance, investment, banking in addition to a range of other monetary services. Australian operations make up 68% revenue of the bank, whilst New Zealand makes 18%, and other countries secures the remaining 14%.

These days: Westpac has controlled bodies and branches all over Australia, New Zealand as well as the regions near the Pacific and has offices in fundamental financial centres across the globe, which includes Singapore, New York, and London. Statistically, the Westpac Group in 2013 had about 36,000 permanent workers, and had worldwide assets estimated to worth 636.6 billion U.S. dollars. Besides that, Westpac is amongst the top 5 companies in the market capitalisation rankings on the Australian Securities Exchange Limited (ASX), with a market capitalisation of89.7 billion U.S. dollars. Furthermore, almost 570,000 institutions and people both locally and internationally are shareholders of Westpac.

Organisation Goals and Strategy

Westpac goals and strategy endeavours to deliver on the company’s mission and vision by offering higher profits for the shareholders, developing unfathomable and lasting relationships with its customer, and being the community leader. In delivering the business’s goals and strategy, Westpac concentrates much on the main markets of Australia, New Zealand as well as the regions near Pacific, where it offers a wide-ranging scope of financial services as well as products that help the bank in meeting all the monetary services needs of its clients. With continuous development of the bank, well-built position in such markets, in addition to almost 12 million customers, the bank goal concentrates much on increasing the numbers of customer and broadening the selected segments as well as developing customer relationships that is deeper and stronger. A fundamental aspect of this approach is Westpac’s collection of financial services brands which allows it to draw in a wider scope of clients, and offers the bank with the strategic suppleness to provide resolutions that well meet entity needs of the customers. In enacting this strategy, Westpac aspire to increase the numbers of the customer in preferred segments as well as increase the product numbers per client with a certain concentration on wealth, deposits, together with insurance cross sell.

Furthermore, Asia provides a crucial market for Westpac and the bank is increasingly developing its presence as well as potential across Asia to well brace Australian as well as New Zealand clients leaving in this region, together with Asian clients looking for financial services and solutions in either Australia or New Zealand. Whilst Westpac at present have a somewhat low cost/income ratio, the bank keep on looking for opportunities to rationalize and make its business simpler, to better the experience quality for customers as well as reduce the bank’s unit costs. Westpac sustainability strategy backs this approach by foreseeing and shaping the surfacing social issues that are most pressing where the bank has the experience in addition to skills to make a consequential distinction and steer the value of business (Westpac, 2013).


The theory or concepts

Organizational staffing is rooted on the concept that the company must choose and train new workers to carry out certain functions in the company. Such functions according to Shipton et al (2006, p. 12) must possess an objective; so, organizational staffing compels human resources staff and managers to clarify the vision of the company. In case, the HR members or managers fail to justify the functions anchored in that organizational vision, then the company must re-examine whether the occupation is even essential. According to Clarke (2004, p. 143), when a worker is hired as well as trained for the reason that he has the ability to help company realize its vision and goals, the probability that the worker fits well into the company heightens. First-class employee fit time and again translates into workers remaining in their jobs as well as working productively, which according to Bates and Khasawneh (2005, p. 98) denotes that the business uses less on expenses like training as well as recruiting. Besides that, productivity could rise as the workers turn out to be experts in their ranks. Theoretically, organizational staffing does not think about the idea that people who are not ideal company fit in point of fact could end up changing the orgnaisation with their ideologies. The primary vision as well as goals of the organisation could by no means change consequently, since all employees hired theoretically have philosophies, abilities and talents that so not clash with management.

Companies according to Avery and McKay (2006, p. 162) must heighten the number of women offering back-up, who will double up as role models to women recruited recently in the company. What’s more, companies must develop a family friendly practices as well as setting hat are elastic, like supple working practices in addition to guiding principle that watch over both genders, and which will facilitate in retaining them. According to
Collins and Han (2004, p. 692), when there is a career break, business organizations must ensure that both females and males remain resourcefully like email. Therefore, when a worker has an absence leave, they must be in a position to access organization conferences, seminars, as well as training. Collins and Han (2004, p. 698) posit that women professionals, in particular for those having family can only succeed if there is no substantial job sharing, childcare resources as well as part-time working. Shipton et al (2006, p. 17) maintain that for diversity in workplaces women who are part of the minority group must be hired and trained by the organisation. Furthermore, organizations must have both formal and informal counselling plans, which will walk the talk and help women groups to diversify by ensuring there is gender balance within the organization.

Bates and Khasawneh (2005, p. 102) assert that training mentally, intellectually, socially, and physically is extremely fundamental in enhancing not just at the organisation productivity level but as well the development of workforce in the business. For that reason, knowledge is the capability the comprehension, the skill, the information, which all people must acquire so as to be in a position to perform resourcefully and function efficiently. According to Minbaeva (2005, p.127), human resources are the organisation’s most important assets, given that with the materials, machines, as well as even the money, not anything can be done with no man-power. Douglas (2009, p.418) admits that training is a systematic development of the skills, knowledge, and attitudes needed by workers to work effectively on a certain job or task.


In most organisations it appears that HR training and development occur in several ways, off the job or on the job; outside organization or in the organization. Keating et al. (2008, p.175) noted that workforce training as well as development is an activity within the workplace that can make an extremely considerable contribution to the general profitability along with effectiveness of an organization. They as a result, offer a systematic training approach which covers the key training elements. The success and effectiveness of the organisation
dwells on the individuals who work in for the business. Therefore, according to Sun and Shi (2008, p.359) for workers in the organisation to be in a position to carry out their duties as well as make significant contributions to the achievement of the organizational goals and strategy, the workers must attain the pertinent knowledge and skills. In approval of this, organisation carry out training as well as development programmes at different organisation levels.
Ability of an organisation to improve informational asymmetries between lenders as well as borrowers and their capacity to handle risks are the essence of its achievement. Such abilities are essential constituents of Westpac output and have an effect on the management incentives to generate financial services resourcefully and prudently.

In a result oriented organization, the HRM is aware of vital role of staff development in improving their competitiveness, profitability, as well as performance. As a result, the organisation must carry out conscious endeavours to use training along with development so as to improve performance. Such endeavours according to Waldeck and Leffakis (2007, p.169) can pay off considerably where there is a high-quality understanding, in addition to suitable use of training and development. Thus, it is vital for organisations to take training and development as a tool for realising organisation goals, strategy and performance. In spite of the fundamental role played by training and HR development towards the accomplishment of organisation performance, the majority of commercial banks in Australia fail to see the significance of staff training and development. In some banks, particularly the conventional banks, they see staff development centre (SDC) as an unnecessary cost and for this reason they marginalise it. What’s more, annual budgets assigned for staff training and development are inadequate, and in particular some banks employees are insufficiently trained and developed making it hard for them to handle complex issues within the bank. Other organisations, as per Douglas (2009, p.418) believe that training departments are centres for punishment (for error-prone workers), and so if staffs that are opposed to it are finally coerced to train, they will become uncommitted.


The human capital concept has significance to the issue of marginal returns, growth as well as productivity, as disparities in productivity in the midst of employees could reflect different skill levels attained by means of investment in human capital development. This will comprise attainment of sensitivities, attitudes, abilities as well as knowledge. At organizational level, Bailey (2011, p.492) posit that HR development refers to the full scope of, processes, tools, strategies, structures as well as procedures that are used in a certain organisation, intended for facilitating the ability of the organizations staff to realize its goals. Even though the focus here is at individual level, it worth noting that the individuals’ abilities are limited by the systems wherein they operate. Westpac (2013) posits that the organisation concentrate much on activities of training and development so as to improve its performance, but given that the bank is known for its enthusiasm in exploiting the effort to gain had to modify the goals of its development and training activities to be compatible with its organisational strategies.

These strategies are anticipated to make Westpac more competitive such that, when all’s said and done the bank can function well. Employees trained in Westpac are expected to be furnished with skills, knowledge as well as attitude that will enable the bank to achieve its organisational goals. Staff involved with or liable to training and development in Westpac must shed light on the objectives of their activities; with the aim of developing the entity objectives from the overall organisational goals as well as strategies. In this regard, there are three activities that constitute training and development activities in Westpac include; self development, courses, and on-the-job, activities. In Self development training activities, staff mostly attend part-time curricula to obtain extra qualification while course activities is organized by Westpac and it entails, symposia, seminars, workshops, and courses. On the other hand, in on-the-job activities, workers are trained through scholarship.

Three Elements Together

It appears that organizational staffing does not reflect on the suggestion that people who are not best for the company fit and could end up changing the orgnaisation with their philosophies. The main organisation vision as well as goals could in no way change consequently, given that all workers hired theoretically have philosophies, abilities as well as talents that may clash with management. Therefore, training psychologically, rationally, collectively, and physically is extremely essential in improving not just at the organisation’s productivity level but as well the development of labour force in the business. According to Minbaeva (2005, p.128), workers are the organisation’s most vital assets, because with the materials, technology, and even the money, nothing can be achieved devoid of man-power. It is evident that
annual budgets allocated for personnel training and development are not enough, and currently in some organisation employees are insufficiently and unsuccessfully trained and developed making it hard for them to deal with multifarious issues in the organisation. In Westpac, it is evidenced that there are three activities that constitute training and development: self development, courses, and on-the-job, activities. Furthermore, it can be observed that
one feature of training and development in Westpac is the accessibility of fund, for this purpose, and although Westpac has money as their trade stock, they do not possess everything they desire continually.


Westpac should consider strategic vision bearing mind that effective human resource strategies cannot last in a vacuum; therefore to be effective, Westpac should be aligned with the strategic vision of the organization. Keating et al. (2008, p.178) observed that vision can offer a clue of where the organisation is heading and the human resources required to assist it get there. Westpac HR managers must review the bank’s present vision to find out ways wherein HR activities can brace that vision. Together with Westpac organizational leaders, HR workers have to consider if the organisation vision is appropriate with regard to internal as well as external factors and whether market changes could be hinting an innovative vision. Westpac should as well enact policies that facilitate transfer of knowledge: It is acknowledged that transfer of knowledge between department staff, regardless of if they are retiring willingly or unwillingly, or because of departure or other reasons it is imperative to make sure there is continuity of effectiveness as well as productivity.

A knowledge transferring strategy is crucial, and this is evidenced by National Association of Professional Employer Organizations (NAPEO), which in its survey established that 33% of banks in New Zealand have developed plans for knowledge transfer. Such plans, according to NAPEO are intended to make sure that the knowledge of aged staff has been secured and will be maintained and transferred to youthful staff as baby boomers leave after retiring (Sun & Shi, 2008). Given that the survey pointed out that 10% of banks responding in the survey had set up plans for knowledge transfer, and an additional 20% were in the middle of developing them, it is high time Westpac borrow a leaf from other banks and start enacting policies that will facilitate transfer of knowledge. In general, Westpac must persuade its staff to further their skills and knowledge through training and development programmes, in order that their abilities can be heightened and for this reason they will turn out to be more productive and be in a position to realise organisational goals and strategies.


In conclusion, it has been argued that HR training and development is a vital factor in elucidating the performance of Westpac. In the essay, it was HR training as well as development. For this reason, the essay recommended that, Westpac have to improve the HR by means of more rigorous training and development as well as capacity utilization programmes. Additionally, given that training cost is a considerable aspect in determining the banks’ performance, then, Westpac should increase it, in order that the performance can be heightened as well.


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