HRM in Grameen Phone

Today, bromides and panaceas for solving people problems are being replaced by a total, a professional approach to human resource management. HRM focus on people in organizational settings. It is concerned with the employees of organizations-the clerks, technicians, supervisors, managers and executives. Large, medium and small organizations understand clearly that to grow, prosper, and remain healthy, they must optimize the return on investment of all resources-financial and human.

When an organization is concerned about people, its total philosophy, culture, and tone will reflect this belief. Human resources management is used to describe the function that is concerned with people-the employees. HRM is the function performed in organizations that facilitates the most effective use of employees to achieve organizational and individual goals. Terms such as personnel, HRM, industrial relations, & employee development are used by different individuals to describe the unit, department, or group concerned about people. The term HRM is now widely used, though many people still refer to a personnel department. It is a term that reflects the increased concerned both society and organizations have for people. Today, employees-the HR demand more of their jobs and respond favorably to management activities that give them greater control of their lives.

Our visited company is “Grameen phone Ltd, Bangladesh” which is the largest mobile operator in Bangladesh and offers special packages and agreements to the largest companies and organizations in the country. We have analyzed the managerial skills of human resource department and try to point out their lacks and suggest some new ideas.

objectives of the study

In this report I have tried to look into the two major activities of HR e.g. Recruitment & Selection & Training & Development of the Sales Department under the Marketing & Sales Division of Grameen Phone. I will also show how these activities support the organization’s overall strategy, and how it is linked to other sales activities within the organization.

SOURCE OF DATA

Grameen Phone Customer Care

Methodology

The study is basically a combination of primary & secondary data. I have interviewed associated personnel of the Sales department & it was not very difficult for me, because I worked in this department before for six months as a part-time employee in the year of 2004.  As the secondary source, information was also taken from books and other vouchers and as well as from World Wide Web.

limitations

The major limitation factor for this report was primarily the reluctance and strict adherence to confidentiality maintenance attitude shown by the officials of Grameen Phone. Though I knew & had access to much information, but there are still some important things which I couldn’t get hold of & they don’t even prefer to disclose those in front of general people.

company profile

Grameen Phone Limited is an existing company, and is the leading cellular service provider in Bangladesh operating a nationwide. Over the past few years the use of cell phone brought about tangible changes in the lifestyle of the people of Bangladesh. Today, a cellular phone is a mere necessity. From a small retail trader at Karwan Bazaar to a remote villager uses cell phone. Four companies are operating in the mobile phone sector in Bangladesh. Grameen Phone, Citycell, Aktel and BanglaLink. Among them the services of Grameen Phone appear to be comparatively better in terms of nationwide networking, customer handling, trouble shooting, billing system etc. Grameen Phone (GP) has been established to provide high quality GSM cellular services at affordable prices. In addition to providing prepaid and postpaid cellular phone services, the company also assists in a -Village Phone- service by being the sole provider of telecommunications services to the Village Phone operators. The Village Phone service provides rural connectivity to approximately 30 million people. Grameen Phone’s total capitalization was US$120,000,000; including around US$50 million from IFC/CDC, and the Asian Development Bank (ADB). It also received US$60 million in equity from the four Grameen Phone private partners. “Grameen Phone” might have been born in Bangladesh, but soon it is likely to join the international cellular jargon. GSM MoU Association at GSM World Congress in Cannes where many villagers made their first-ever call using pre-paid, recently rewarded rural cellular marketing, by Vodaphone in South Africa. “Grameen Phone” the unique cellular operator from Bangladesh, also made an impressive presentation at Cannes.

Products and Services of the company

Products

Pre-Paid

  • Smile
  • Djuice

Post Paid

  • xplore

Recharge

  • Flexi-Load
  • Scratch Card

Hardware

  • Genuine Handsets
  • GPRS and EDGE Modem
  • Accessories ( Charger, Battery etc)

Services

Public Phone Activation

Value Added Services:

  •  International Roaming
  •  EDGE
  •  Voice Mail Services
  •  Text Messages

Bill Payment

You can pay your post paid bill of any amount at any Grameenphone Center

Grameen Phone launches new price plan

Grameenphone Ltd. announced a new range of price plans that is expected to bring greater simplicity in the pre-paid category. The company has also revealed a new price plan for its djuice product as well.

Details of the new price plan were announced at a press conference today, 14 March 2010, held at a local hotel.

The three prices packages – Shohoj, Aapon, Bondhu, along with djuice – have been developed for pre-paid subscribers and offers interchangeability and easy migration.

“The price plan is not just a simplification of our tariff plan,” said Grameenphone CEO, Oddvar Hesjedal, “it is a conscious effort to provide the best and most cost efficient solution to our customers, based on their individual calling requirements.”

The Grameenphone CEO was present at the event with Mr. Arild Kaale, Chief Marketing Officer, and Mr. Kazi Monirul Kabir, Chief Communication Officer, among other officials.

Explaining the dynamics of the new price plan, the Grameenphone CMO added that the “launch of the price campaign represents the largest and most comprehensive tariff offer for Grameenphone subscribers since its inception”.

The Shohoj package will cater to users who need to call all networks and offers callers a low, flat rate of BDT 0.79 per minute to any operator number. Shohoj users will also have the option to SMS any number at BDT 1 per SMS. The Aapon package has been designed for callers who have a predominately Grameenphone calling base. Aapon offers a special day time tariff and night time tariff (12pm-4pm and 12am-8am respectively) of 49 paisa per minute. Aapon users can also call three FnF numbers (Grameenphone numbers only) at 49 paisa per minute any time, and send SMS to the FnF numbers at BDT 0.50 paisa per SMS. Aapon users will also have the option to SMS any number (GP and other operator) at BDT 1 per SMS.

The Bondhu package is for users whose calls are usually limited to a tight FnF circle. This package offers the highest number of FnFs and users can call seven FnF numbers at 49 paisa per minute any time. With Bondhu package, calls to all other numbers (Other than the seven FnFs) are BDT 0.99 per minute. SMS rates are BDT 0.50 per SMS to GP numbers and BDT 1 to other operator numbers.

Djuice retains its youth focus where there is big interest in community tariffs and special night time tariffs. What’s new is that any Grameenphone pre-paid customer can opt for djuice, or vice versa. Notably a regular migration fee of BDT 10 will be charged for migration to or from all packages after 13 April 2010.

“Subscribers can migrate from package to package every 30 days to find the one that fits them best. This ensures a way for pre-paid subscribers to opt for the best value solution in stride with the changes in their needs”, said the Gramophone CMO.

Services

  • Market survey and collecting the feedback
  • Participation in exhibition
  • Participation in opening of dealer’s outlet
  • Instant delivery
  • Introducing & selling new packages
  • Follow up with existing subscribers
  • Building up relations with subscribers

 Others

Welcome To Grameenphone Internet

Internet is the most convenient medium of information, through which people can enhance their knowledge, spread the same from one corner of the globe to whichever place they wish with a single click.

Communication solutions developed by Grameenphone across all the media have always focused one single thing – to help people stay close to their dear ones and to enlighten their lives through free and flawless access to information. Grameenphone internet is another step towards fulfilling this goal. With this step, Grameenphone promises to enlighten the lives of 20 million people by providing easier and faster access to information than ever before.
Grameenphone so far brought Internet to people in the following ways:

1)    Desktop and Laptop browsing: by using the mobile as modem or by internet modem
2)    Mobile screen browsing: WAP/internet browsing on the mobile
3)    CIC: More than 550 CICs all over the country for those who do not have access to PC or other facilities.

Grameenphone is looking to expand further into the digital world by expanding its internet platforms and developing more internet related products, thus becoming the biggest Internet Service Provider of Bangladesh.

 

 GRAMEEN PHONE – AN OVERVIEW

Grameen Phone Ltd. is a multinational mobile telecommunication company that came in Bangladesh with big promises. It not only promised to cover the whole Bangladesh in six years, the most important thing that it promised was to make available mobile phones to our poor rural people that would change their life-style dramatically. Most of their revenue comes from service charge rather than selling the handset.

Grameen Phone got license on November 1996. After launching officially in March 26, 1997; Grameen Phone has already marketed following products from the initiation of business.

ANALYSIS OF THE COMPANY

November 28, 1996

Grameenphone was offered a cellular license in Bangladesh by the Ministry of Posts and Telecommunications

March 26, 1997

Grameenphone launched its service on the Independence Day of Bangladesh

November 5, 2006

After almost 10 years of operation, Grameenphone has over 10 million subscribers

Grameenphone is now the leading telecommunications service provider in the country with more than 23 million subscribers as of December 2009.
Presently, there are about 50 million telephone users in the country, of which, a little over one million are fixed-phone users and the rest mobile phone subscribers.
Starting its operations on March 26, 1997, the Independence Day of Bangladesh, Grameenphone has come a long way. It is a joint venture enterprise between Telenor (55.8%), the largest telecommunications service provider in Norway with mobile phone operations in 12 other countries, and Grameen Telecom Corporation (34.2% ), a non-profit sister concern of the internationally acclaimed micro-credit pioneer Grameen Bank. The other 10% shares belong to 10% to general retail and institutional investors.
Over the years, Grameenphone has always been a pioneer in introducing new products and services in the local market. GP was the first company to introduce GSM technology in Bangladesh when it launched its services in March 1997.The technological know-how and managerial expertise of Telenor has been instrumental in setting up such an international standard mobile phone operation in Bangladesh. Being one of the pioneers in developing the GSM service in Europe, Telenor has also helped to transfer this knowledge to the local employees over the years.

The company has so far invested more than BDT 10,700 crore (USD 1.6 billion) to build the network infrastructure since its inception in 1997. It has invested over BDT 3,100 crore (USD 450 million) during the first three quarters of 2007 while BDT 2,100 crore (USD 310 million) was invested in 2006 alone. Grameenphone is also one the largest taxpayers in the country, having contributed nearly BDT 7000 crore in direct and indirect taxes to the Government Exchequer over the years. Of this amount, over BDT 2000 crore was paid in 2006 alone.

Since its inception in March 1997, Grameenphone has built the largest cellular network in the country with over 10,000 base stations in more than 5700 locations. Presently, nearly 98 percent of the country’s population is within the coverage area of the Grameenphone network.

Grameenphone was also the first operator to introduce the pre-paid service in September 1999. It established the first 24-hour Call Center, introduced value-added services such as VMS, SMS, fax and data transmission services, international roaming service, WAP, SMS-based push-pull services, EDGE, personal ring back tone and many other products and services.

The entire Grameenphone network is also EDGE/GPRS enabled, allowing access to high-speed Internet and data services from anywhere within the coverage area. There are currently nearly 3 million EDGE/GPRS users in the Grameenphone network.

Grameenphone nearly doubled its subscriber base during the initial years while the growth was much faster during the later years. It ended the inaugural year with 18,000 customers, 30,000 by the end of 1998, 60,000 in 1999, 193,000 in 2000, 471,000 in 2001, 775,000 in 2002, 1.16 million in 2003, 2.4 million in 2004, 5.5 million in 2005, 11.3 million in 2006, and it ended 2007 with 16.5 million customers.

From the very beginning, Grameenphone placed emphasis on providing good after-sales services. In recent years, the focus has been to provide after-sales within a short distance from where the customers live. There are now more than 600 GP Service Desks across the country covering nearly all upazilas of 61 districts. In addition, there are 72 Grameenphone Centers in all the divisional cities and they remain open from 8am-7pm every day including all holidays.
GP has generated direct and indirect employment for a large number of people over the years. The company presently has more than 5,000 full and temporary employees. Another 100,000 people are directly dependent on Grameenphone for their livelihood, working for the Grameenphone dealers, retailers, scratch card outlets, suppliers, vendors, contractors and others.

In addition, the Village Phone Program, also started in 1997, provides a good income-earning opportunity to more than 210,000 mostly women Village Phone operators living in rural areas. The Village Phone Program is a unique initiative to provide universal access to telecommunications service in remote, rural areas. Administered by Grameen Telecom Corporation, it enables rural people who normally cannot afford to own a telephone to avail the service while providing the VP operators an opportunity to earn a living.

The Village Phone initiative was given the “GSM in the Community” award at the global GSM Congress held in Cannes, France in February 2000. Grameenphone was also adjudged the Best Joint Venture Enterprise of the Year at the Bangladesh Business Awards in 2002. Grameenphone was presented with the GSM Association’s Global Mobile Award for ‘Best use of Mobile for Social and Economic Development’ at the 3GSM World Congress held in Singapore, in October 2006, for its Community Information Center (CIC) project, and for its HealthLine Service project at the 3GSM World Congress held in Barcelona, Spain, in February 2007.

Grameenphone considers its employees to be one of its most important assets. GP has an extensive employee benefit scheme in place including Gratuity, Provident Fund, Group Insurance, Family Health Insurance, Transportation Facility, Day Care Centre, Children’s Education Support, Higher Education Support for employees, in-house medical support and other initiatives.

Profit

Gramophone posts record high addition of 2.6 million new subscriptions in Q2

Gramophone Ltd. reported BDT 3,581 crore revenues for the first half of 2010 with 12% increase from the first half of 2009. Total revenue for the second quarter of 2010 was BDT 1,877 crores, up by 15% from the same period of 2009. The growth in revenue was mainly in voice revenues due to subscription growth and revenues from sale of GP branded handsets and data cards. Data revenues also contributed to the consistent revenue growth, increased by 68% from the first half of 2009.

“We are delighted to share with our shareholders that GP has delivered a strong revenue and subscription growth in the first half of 2010,” said Raihan Shamsi, Deputy CEO & CFO, Grameenphone Ltd.” He added, “Superior service quality and innovative products & services have given us a competitive edge over the market. He also noted “our rural footprint is now even stronger through our new product ‘Baadhon’ bundled with low cost handsets.”

The Company has added record high 2.6 million new subscriptions during the quarter. This addition takes Grameenphone’s total subscription base to 26.5 million, serving 44% of the mobile market.

Net profit after taxes for the first half of 2010 was BDT 483 crores with 13% margin compared to BDT 478 crores with 15% margin of the first half of 2009. Despite the revenue growth, the fall in margin was mainly due to heavy subsidy of BDT 327 crores provided by Grameenphone for high subscription acquisition. This has also pushed the EBITDA margins down to 49% for the first half of 2010 compared to 59% of same period of 2009. Raihan Shamsi noted that “We see this dent in profitability by acquiring more subsidized subscriptions as a short-term investment and are hopeful to see better return through revenue generation on a long-term perspective.”

Raihan Shamsi also underscored that “SIM tax, which is limiting the growth of the mobile industry as well as the progress of bridging the digital divide, has been overlooked in the approved National Budget for 2010-11, creating a conflict between industry growth and the dream of Digital Bangladesh”.

Grameenphone contributed BDT 1,814 crores to the national exchequer in first half of 2010 and BDT 16,600 crores since inception. Despite having lower corporate tax rate, Grameenphone has paid BDT 468 crores in corporate taxes during the first half of this year, which was BDT 82 crores more compared to first half of last year.

Grameenphone, for the first time as a listed company, conducted its 13th Annual General Meeting on 8 June 2010 amidst huge participation of the Shareholders and created a benchmark by complying with all applicable regulations, even being the largest corporate house in the country. The shareholders approved the financial statements and 60% cash dividend for the year 2009 among other agenda.

 

ANALYSIS OF SWOT

Strengths (S):

 

$ Good Owner Structure

$ Availability of Backbone Network (Optical fibber)

$ Financial Soundness

$ Market Leader

$ Brand Name / Grameen Image

$ Skilled Human Resource

$ Largest Geographical Coverage

$ Good Human Resource and Infrastructure Installation all over the country through Bangladesh Railway and Grameen Bank

$Access to the widest rural distribution network through Grameen Bank

$ High Ethical Standard

$ Highest and advanced value added service provider.

Weaknesses (W):

$ Mixture of different cultures is used as an excuse not to solve problems

$ Too much inside out thinking in the company

$ Different departments not working together

$ Poor interconnection with BTTB

$ Complicated price structure

$ Billing System can’t handle sophisticated billing

$ No long-term Distribution/Channel strategy

 

Opportunities (O):

$ Economic growth of Bangladesh

$ New and better interconnection agreement

$ Huge need for telecom services

$ Increased intentional activities in Bangladesh

$ Declining prices for handsets

$ Future privatization of the fixed network

$ New international gateway

$ Demand for inter-city communication

$ Growth in other operator will give more connection.

 

Threats (T):

$ More rigid government regulations

$ More influence of competitors on the fixed network

$ Change of government might lead to competitors having more clout

$ Devaluation of Taka

$ National catastrophes

$ Sabotage of installation

$ Non-co-operation of government and fixed PSTN (Public Service Telephone Network)

$ Risk of fire in GP’s Installations

$ Price war

$ Non-availability of funds

$ BTTB has limited capacity for interconnections

$ New Tele-talk; a cheaper mobile phone service is launching which is government owned.

 

Lastly I can say that there is threats and weaknesses are simple than the strengths and opportunities.GrameenPhone must be able to achieve their goal.

 

Since 1996 Grameen Phone is driving its car on the high way of telecommunication industry of Bangladesh and they have achieved the position of market just because of their quality service, extensive marketing research, and well infrastructure and for an exclusive management team; where the competitors are far behind them. Grameen Phone has got the highest number of subscriber.

 

FINDINGS

There is actually no organization in this world which is free from problems. GP is not also free from problems: in GP we have found the following problems. Some are general problems & some are specifically related with Compensation & Reward policy of HRM:

  1. Their working environment is not good. There is not enough free space to walk smoothly. There are not even enough chairs to seat. The arrangement they made is not also good. More or less the environment of GP (HRD) is not very good.
  2. They don’t have any flexible benefits plan for their employees.
  3. There is no slot for Part Time job in GP
  4. GP does not have the profit sharing policy.
  5. There is no regular meeting in GP with senior management.
  6. The numbers of direct & indirect rewards are very few.
  7. They don’t help their employees in tax cutting.
  8. The number of female employee is very low & no female official is there in the top management. It’s a sort of discrimination
  9. The practice of job evaluation is still not there.
  10. There is no system like Pay-Leave in GP

These are the problems that we found in GP while we went there to take interviews from the employees working there in GP.

SUGGESTION AND RECOMMENDATIONS

However, as far as our project is concerned, we have identified the problems in GP up to a certain level. Now at this stage we would like to give some suggestions to GP for a better future:

  1. They should make some improvement in the work environment. As we have seen it is very much congested & not even friendly. They should bring some more chairs & reception should be improved more.
  2.  From our point of view, flexible benefits plan is something very motivated to the employees. It gives the employee some extra honor & opportunity to work more perfectly. You may not know what his or her need is, but you can make the opportunity available then we think it is very much helpful to them.
  3.  Part time job should be introduced. They should make some opportunities available for the students. If they only thinks about profit or nothing beneficial to the society than they will run out from the competition very soon. It’s a matter of image.
  4. Profit sharing with the employees is something another very motivating item. It helps the employees to concentrate more. Well, if you give him or her share from the profit than obviously it would be very much motivated.
  5. The executive that we talked with is in very much support to introduce regular meeting with senior officials. At the end of the day all the employees of the company will join in a place and tell the experience & problems that he or she faced. In this way the improvement in all areas can be possible.
  6. The number of reward should be increased. It may sounds like that, if the company increase the number of rewards then the costs will go up, but you may never know how the profits are coming.
  7. In our country female don’t get jobs easily. We don’t know what the reason behind that is. GP is not even different from it. So our suggestion to them is to make a slot for the female employees, like out of 10 employees at least 3 should be female. In this way they can come across the discrimination.
  8. Any sort of evaluation is very important. It helps to know the weakness of some particular thing, but we found no sorts of evaluation in GP. So they should introduce this evaluation system as early as possible.
  9. They should introduce something like counseling services for the benefit of the employees.
  10. GP should look after their employees & health care program can be one of them. Till now they have not introduced it.
  11. From many surveys it was found that team work is better them individual work in many cases. So assignments should be done by team based.
  12. Give more and more recognition to the employees, both inside and outside the organization.
  13. Incentives can be developed in the forms of profit sharing, team incentive pools, and awards for achievement against defined objectives, gain sharing, cost savings, or management discretion.
  14. Model the proposed plan under various scenarios to identify impact at varying success levels.
  15. Develop a comprehensive employee communications plan with dates, materials, etc.
  16. Develop a management communications plan to parallel the employee communication plan.
  17. The things to be remember:

The first time an employee receives an award, they perceive the reward as performance based and greatly appreciate it.

The second time an employee receives an award, the perception is a reminder and reinforce of performance.

The third time an employee receives an award; the perception can be that the reward is an entitlement.

 

CONCLUSION

In this report I have talked about GP’s recruiting & training process, what is required for recruitment & training and so forth and also we have discussed about the training technique of the sales force at the same time I have discussed about the drawbacks of both recruiting and training process. I have also recommended for overcoming these drawbacks. So the bottom line of the project paper is Grameen Phone is a well-known and most popular mobile phone company in this country.

For any organization, recruiting and training, these two are very significant tasks. Recruiting the right sales force for any company has a very significant impact for Grameen phone. As it is the leading telecommunication organization in this country, it is very important for the company to recruit the right sales force for its operation. If they fail to recruit the most efficient sales force, it will be not possible for the company to remain as the number one mobile industry in the competitive market. And to remain as the number one mobile industry Grameen Phone need to train its sales force more efficient and effective than ever before. And to do so, they will have to make the training technique more effective, more motivational and more efficient.

Company Profile

Reference

  • Website of Grammen Phone (http://www.grameenphone.com)
  • www.Grameen- Daily news paper. “The Daily Janakantha.”13 August,2003.

Organizational structure (TOTal)

  • Capture