This paper conducts a survey on the human resources, environmental and recycling department of IKEA Company by formulating four question and answers for each department.
IKEA ensures effective hiring and recruitment of its staff through different ways. The company is value driven and focuses on communicative forthrightness, simplicity, teamwork and urgency. The company’s core values include dynamism; cost consciousness, flexibility and employee empowerment. It is transparent in communicating these values. The company’s job advertising campaigns are designed to emphasize on these values to ensure effectiveness in hiring. The company’s corporate culture is embedded in its human resources in different ways. IKEA uses its corporate brand as a cultural schema that is mutually sustaining. Brannan, Elizabeth and Vincenza illustrate that schemas are procedures applied in social life. They give examples of schemas as norms, rules and notions applicable in various situations. As such, one of the central notions for IKEA organization is its general vision “to create a better life for the many people.” Its human resource vision is “to give down-to-earth straight-forward people the possibility to grow both as individuals and in their professional roles, so that together we are strongly committed to creating a better everyday life for ourselves and our customers” (134).
The company’s vision is based on its unique corporate culture that exerts influence on every aspect of its activities both externally and internally. The company management defines corporate culture as the way activities in the company are as well as interactions and relations. Core values in IKEA are communicated to employees through behaviours such as promoting teamwork (Brannan, Elizabeth and Vincenza 134). The company uses informal human resources contracts to engage its employees. The contract illustrates the employees’ rights and responsibilities and tries to engage colleagues who are in their work and whose performance goes beyond expectations Brannan, Elizabeth and Vincenza 135).
IKEA has a preference for internal communication of values though the open website. The website is accessible to all stall. In addition, it uses a corporate magazine known as Read Me, to highlight the values that are in actualizing the company’s culture (Brannan, Elizabeth and Vincenza 135).
The company encourages its customers to prepare their own shopping bag. In Hong Kong, the company has been implementing and promoting the “every day no plastic bag” perspective (IKEA Hong Kong, “About IKEA”). In addition, the company has been using biodegradable plastic bags in an effort to reduce the impact have on the environment. Since 2008, the company has also partnered with the Environmental Protection Department in operating recycling programmes on fluorescent lamps and rechargeable batteries. This is performed by placing recycle boxes in its stores where customers can dispose of the two items in a simple and convenient manner.
IKEA has environmental awareness programmes focusing on the issues of energy saving (Laasch and Roger 261). It enhances its customers’ awareness by posting various notices that provide environmental tips and information on the use of energy saving bulbs (IKEA Hong Kong, “About IKEA”). In the 1908s, the company was challenged for causing destruction to the environment by using exceeding amounts of formaldehyde in its products. A concern was raised by the Danish government in its adoption of formaldehyde emission standards that IKEA exceeded (Doppelt 111). The 1980s issue of excess formaldehyde emission caused negative publicity to IKEA among the Danish media and the company was fined (Edvardsson and Bo 20). Further damage was caused by lost sales and ill will and an investigation was launched to determine the source of the problem. In a different situation, in Germany, the company’s sales around the world declined after one of its products, the ‘Billy bookshelf,’ was found to release large amounts of formaldehyde vapor exceeding the levels allowed by the law. As a result, the production and sales of the bookshelf were stopped and the company lost approximately US$6 to 7 million (Schwerin 84).
In Germany, it is illegal to dispose of old furniture at dumpsites. Therefore, IKEA is focusing on developing furniture that is to disassemble and recycle in the future. In Switzerland, since 1994, the company provides its customers with recycling services for their armchairs and old sofas. It charges less than the customers pay at the dumpsite (Nattrass and Mary 65). IKEA strives not to be wasteful by economizing on its resources. Therefore, the company had formulated goals that reflect the same. For example, the company intends to get wood supplies from preferred sources by 2017. Further, all its home furnishings and packaging materials will be made from recycled, recyclable and renewable materials by 2015 (IKEA United Kingdom, “Recycling of Electrical and Electronic Equipment”).
The company supports the recycling of plastic bags, but prefers customers to purchase and reuse cloth bags. It also advocates for recycling of aluminum bottles, foils and cans, newspapers, ink cartridges, and old laptop, calculator and iPod batteries (Kurtz and Louis 472). IKEA works together with its suppliers to ensure its raw materials come from sustainable sources. As such, it reduces its impacts of production on the environment by ensuring each resource is used in a way that it can be recycled (Koester, Angela, Michael and Martin 68).
This paper conducted a survey on the human resources, environmental and recycling department of IKEA Company by formulating four question and answers for each department.
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