Human Resource Management - Best Practices at Marriott International

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Case Details:

Case Code : HROB064
Case Length : 18 Pages
Period : 1997-2004
Pub Date : 2004
Teaching Note :Not Available
Organization : Marriott International
Industry : Hospitality
Countries : USA

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This case study was compiled from published sources, and is intended to be used as a basis for class discussion. It is not intended to illustrate either effective or ineffective handling of a management situation. Nor is it a primary information source.

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Excerpts Contd...

Employee Retention and Welfare Initiatives

Retaining employees in the hospitality industry was vital as the cost of recruiting and training new employees was very high. Marriott operated in an industry where every day counted and weekends and holidays generated more business than weekdays.

Customer service had to be provided on a 24/7/365 basis. The implication was that employees had to go through a hectic work schedule; an average work week lasted more than 50 hours. With the increasing work load due to rising customers in the late-1990s, several key managers at Marriott left.

They wanted to devote more time to their personal lives and their jobs at Marriott were not helping the cause.

Facing this challenge, Marriott launched a new program called Management Flexibility in February 2000 on a pilot basis at three of its hotels.

The aim was to assist Marriott's managers in balancing their professional and personal lives, without negatively affecting customer service or the company's financials...

Grievance Redressal System

By the mid-1990s, Marriott had a comprehensive complaint resolution system in place, known as the Guarantee of Fair Treatment (GFT), to ensure that employee grievances were addressed.

Under GFT, complaints passed through successive stages in Marriott's hierarchy, starting with the immediate superior, depending on whether or not the said employee was happy with the redress response given at each stage.

However, given the decentralized nature of Marriott's operations, and with managers handling several tasks, resolution of complaints through GFT did not quite produce the desired results.

It, therefore, decided to try new methods of complaint resolution while continuing with GFT. These methods included mediation, a toll-free hotline and peer-review...

The Benefits Reaped

Marriott's efforts over the decades to develop an employee-friendly work place earned it widespread recognition in the hospitality industry. The awards it received for 'the best place to work' were testimony. (Refer Exhibit IV for awards received by Marriott). The company reaped benefits like higher employee satisfaction and less turnover. Employee satisfaction could be gauged from the 2003 Associate Opinion Survey, in which 90% of employees surveyed expressed great pride in working for Marriott...


Exhibit I: Marriott's Culture - The Marriott Way
Exhibit II: Programs For Recruitment Of Frontline Employees
Exhibit III: Marriott's Recruitment Advertisement (2003)
Exhibit IV: Awards Received By Marriott


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