The paper "The Similarities and Differences between the Human Resource and Employment Relations Strategies" is a wonderful example of a literature review on human resources. The fast-food industry across the world shares some similarities regardless of the national boundaries in that it is expected to provide quick service to its customers, it offers standardized menus, and its product offerings are limited and meant for quick consumption. The highlighted similarities are all meant to produce a “ uniform outcome and to make the organization less dependent on skills of individual workers” (Leidner, 1993, p.
24). Like in many other sectors, the fast-food industry depends on labor input from workers. As noted by Royle (2002a, p. 9), the different “ employment relations and statutory contexts” present in different countries affect how the fast-food industry manages the human resource (HR) functions as well as how it handles the employment relations. Regardless of the country's differentials, however, Royle (2002a, p. 9) holds the opinion that the fast-food industry relies on part-time workers, whose wages are low, and their tasks are rigidly standardized. Such a form of employment system generates high rates of employee turnover, and as a result, unionization in the fast-food industry is almost non-existent (Royle, 2002a).
Human Resource Management (HRM) and Employee Relations (ER) in the fast-food industry are thus presented as favoring the employer while disadvantaging the employee, who can be replaced just as fast as he/she was hired. This essay will compare and contrast HRM practices in Germany, the United States, and Russia. The essay will use McDonald’ s Fast Food restaurant as the subject of the essay due to its presence in the three identified countries.
The essay will be based on three articles addressing how the three identified countries manage the labor relations in their respective fast food industries as authored by Royle (2002b), Lediner (2002), and Shekshnia, Puffer and McCarthy (2002). The essay will start by comparing the similarities in the fast-food industry in the three countries. The second part will then contrast the differences in the same countries, while the final part will draw conclusions and make recommendations on what needs to be done if the fast-food industry is to improve its HRM and ER practices.
Budhwar, P S, & Debrah, Y A 2001, Human resource management in developing countries, Routledge, London; New York.
Dowling, P J, Festing, M & Engle, A D Sr. 2008, International human resource management, 5th Edition, Thomson, Australia.
Leidner, R 1993, Fast food, fast talk: Service work and the routinization of everyday life, University of California Press, California.
Leidner, R 2002, ‘Fast food work in the United States’, in Royle, T & Towers, B (eds) Labour relations in the global fast food industry, Routledge, London, pp. 8-23.
McDonald’s serves...1997, ‘McDonald’s serves up HR Success...in 91 countries around the world’, Management Development Review, vol. 10, no. 1, pp. 42-43.
Royle, T 2001, Working for McDonald’s in Europe: The unequal struggle? Routledge, New York; London.
Royle, T 2002a, Labour relations in the global food industry, Routledge, New York; London.
Royle, T 2002b, ‘Undermining the system? Labour relations in the German fast-food industry’, in Royle, T & Towers, B (eds) Labour relations in the global fast food industry, Routledge, London, pp. 76-101.
Shekshnia, S, Puffer, S & McCarthy, D 2002, ‘To Russia with Big Macs: Labour relations in the Russian fast-food industry’, in Royle, T & Towers, B (eds) Labour relations in the global fast food industry, Routledge, London, pp. 117-35.