Investment in staff training and development has been crucial for the retail industry because the retailers use a wide variety of seminars, leadership, technical courses and management training to improve their staff’s performances. In addition, companies are devoting several resources for ongoing staff training and development, where information technologies are most important. Information systems and information technology can enhance the effectiveness of training and development significantly to improve staff performance. In the current labor market, it is difficult for retailers to find out the right people for the right position at the right time.
On the other hand, the rapid changes in technological developments are providing more opportunities to the staff in workplaces than ever before. Therefore, providing effective training using more effective information to improve their performance has been a significant issue to the UK retail industry. In the current situation of Tesco business, it is using several information technologies in its training and development programs to improve staff performance. However, Tesco could not clear yet the impact of information technology used in training and development on staff performance. Therefore, the UK retailers including Tesco need to find the exact impact of information technology on training and development to improve staff performance.
The aims of the undertaking research work are to evaluate the impact of information technologies on training and development programs to improve staff performance and to recommend Tesco how it can improve the information technologies usages in training and development to enhance staff performance. The objectives of the study are: 1) To explore several training and development programs that existed in the current business world; 2) To explore information technologies used in training and development and to analyze and evaluate their importance and application in the retail industry of the UK; 3)
To analyze the existing information technologies used in Tesco training and development to improve staff performance; 4) To evaluate the effectiveness of information technologies used in Tesco training and development on employee performance in the perspective of employee’s views; 5) To assess the impact of information technology used in training and development on staff performance; 6) To find out the weaknesses of Tesco’s information technologies used in training and development to improve staff performance, and 7) To recommend Tesco how it can use information technologies more effectively in training and development to improve employee performance.
This research work has benefited the researcher in several ways. First, it has developed researcher knowledge on how a research study can be conducted successfully using appropriate methods and methodologies. Then, the study has taught how to collect data from both primary and secondary data sources. Next, the research work taught the researcher how the data collected are presented and analyzed. Then, the research study has taught the researcher how to find the solutions of the research problems and recommend the client. Finally, the study has guided how to find out the research limitations and scope for further study. In a word, the undertaking research study has fitted the researcher to work professionally in the industry to achieve a better career.
Several methods and methodologies have been applied in the undertaking research study. Researcher philosophical views follow the pragmatism strategy and ontological views follow as both subjective and objective. The researcher has conducted exploratory, descriptive and explanatory studies in this research. The researcher has used both qualitative and quantitative data collection methods, where the data came from both primary and secondary data sources. The research study has followed the inductive research approach, where the researcher’s epistemological view was positivism and analytical.
Two sampling methods have been applied in the undertaking research study, where for conducting survey one sampling and for conducting interview one sampling. The probability sampling method has been used for conducting a survey, where 50 staff from different stores have been selected randomly. These 50 staffs have come from different departments and positions, where 10 staffs are customer assistants, 10 staffs are shop-floor workers, 10 staffs are back-office workers, 10 staffs are shift-leaders, and 10 staffs are line managers. The other sample has been used for conducting interviews, where the non-probability sampling method has been used on five store managers from five different Tesco stores.
For analyzing both quantitative and qualitative data, the researcher has used several tools and techniques. Firstly, SPSS software and MS Excel Sheets have been used to present the quantitative data on Bar Chart, Pie Chart, Table, etc. Secondly, a one-way ANOVA test has been conducting to test the hypothesizes and conduct statistical data analysis. Thirdly, content and feature analysis techniques have been used to analyze qualitative data. Finally, the researcher has discussed the research findings with references in a short descriptive text format focusing on every variable.
The key findings of the research study are: a) there is a closed-relationship between information technology and staff training and development in improving staff performance; b) information technology plays an important role in training and development to improve staffs retention and performance; c) information technology will support Tesco training and development to improve staffs performance; and d) the research outcome will guide Tesco how it can improve its training and development programs using more effective information technologies.
The key recommendations of the study are: a) Tesco should focus more on online training using several online-based information technologies such as the internet, social media, email, averaging, etc; b) Tesco training methods should be more interactive providing interactive video; c) Tesco can use 3D virtual world like second life and viral learning environment (VLE) to train and develop its staffs; and d) Tesco should be more aware of storing and maintain staff data-keeping mind the data privacy and security issues.
First, I would give many thanks to the almighty God for providing me knowledge and wisdom with good health and mind to conduct this research work. Then, many thanks to my honor supervisor, who supported me in providing guidelines and feedback on my research study. Next, many thanks and cordial love to my parents who brought up me and have been supporting me financially and providing advice to develop my career. Following this, I would like to be grateful to the authors of several books and journals, and the publishers of different websites from where I have collected huge data to conduct my research work. Finally, I would like to appreciate my lovely wife who has supported me with motivation, encouragement and taking care of my health and mind during the research study.
Chapter 1: Introduction
An organization like Tesco depends on skilled and experienced people in its business operations. The organization needs coordination and co-operation from its staff to meet the goals and objectives. Consequently, employee performance is an important factor for business success. According to Mullins (2010), for improved staff performance organization needs to select and recruit talented people first. Then, it needs to train and develop them to be skilled and experienced. CIPD (2013) states that training and development is the progressive approach for covering required techniques and knowledge, work-related skills and experiences.
Staff performances are the key power of an organization. The organization would grow fast with dynamics if workforces are used appropriately and work properly by recognizing talents and developing capabilities (Bratton and Gold, 2012). On the other hand, an organization has to do its activities by people, where some people may have lower capabilities and performance than others. In this case, the organization needs to apply different kinds of training and development programs to promote their capabilities and performance (Torrington et al., 2010).
Information technologies are playing an important role in the effectiveness of staff training and development of the present business world (Davenport and Short, 2013). Modern organizations are using different information technologies in their training and development to develop their staff and improve their performances (Schwalbe, 2013). However, many organizations are still now in dilemma about the exact impact of information technologies used in training and development on improved staff performance (Ward and Peppard, 2012). Therefore, this study will examine how modern information technology impacts effective training and development to improve staff performances. The study will be based on a particular business case study, namely Tesco stores.
1.1 Research Background
Tesco is the largest retailer in Europe. It is serving millions of customers every week in its thousands of stores by more than 500,000 staff. Tesco believes skilled and experienced teams forward to better performance and business productivity, consequently, it offers an exceptional range of training and development programs in workplaces.
The advancement of information technology has transformed most workplaces and changed the ways the employees of organizations learn and develop. The effective use of modern information technologies in training and development programs is impacting significantly on staff’s interpersonal skills mainly collaboration and communications (Schwalbe, 2013). As a result, many organizations are nowadays implementing different kinds of information technologies within workplaces to teach and develop their staff (Davenport and Short, 2013). In addition, information technology used in learning and development programs can reduce training costs and carbon footprint, and improve continual learning outside the workplaces (OPM, 2014).
Although Tesco is providing a wider range of training and development programs, it is facing a number of challenges with its employee performance and their skills and experiences. Firstly, a high rate of absenteeism is seen in Tesco staff. Secondly, Tesco faces a high rate of employee turnover with poor performance. Different issues raised by trade unions and poor commitment to works are also impacting the staff performance negatively (Tesco Annual Report, 2014). The critics say that Tesco may not be using effective technologies in the methods of its training and development programs, consequently, the above issues have been raised (Scullin, 2014)………..