Google Best HR Policy

February 1, 2019 | Author: cavkkaran | Category: Employment, Motivation, Self-Improvement, Google, Salary
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Google best HR company...




by: Anshul Anand (PGEXP/011/2013) Dipti Shukla


Rachit Kumar (PGEXP/061/2013) Seema Singh (PGEXP/079/2013) Vikash Kumar (PGEXP/096/2013)

INTRODUCTION: Google, initially known as BackRub, was formed by Larry Page and Sergey Brin in 1996 to determine the importance of individual webpages. Later they named it “Google,” a play on the word “googol,” the mathematical term for a 1 followed by 100 zeros. Google Inc. was born in

Sep. 1998. Google has strong work culture and employee empowerment philosophy since its incorporation. The founders, Larry Page and Sergey Brin, wanted to establish Google as a company that was to be seen as a company run by the geeks. Branding as geeks is a matter of pride for Google. In its alignment with the business strategy its HR Department attract the best minds across the globe to work for Google. Google is regarded as one of the most successful internet switch and in 2003 Google become the most chosen search engine among the internet users due to its accuracy and speed. It is ranked first by Fortune among “Best company to work for-2014” consecutively 8th time. It is also ranked 8th by Glassdoor among “Employees Choice Best place to work for-2014”. Google is also ranked 3rd among “World’s Most admired company-2014” by Fortune. Google always had the edge over its competitors not only on technology but on the ability to attract the best employees. During the late 1990s the world went through a technological boom which was known as the dotcom boom. At a time where almost all big tech companies experienced an employee turnover, Google was the only company that did not face a similar crisis. These stories of success allow Google to be placed in the employees mind which spars loyalty and attachment to the company.


In modern business world, organisational culture does play a dominant part in the success of any business. It is extremely important to adopt suitable strategies to attract the best in the business. Google succeeded in attracting and retaining the best minds by having an innovative organisational culture. Google was selected as the best company to work by fortune in 2008. The Cultural Web (Johnson, 1988) of Google is dominated by this basic paradigm of managerial flexibility, team-working and innovativeness.

Google removed the unnecessary managerial hierarchies which gave its engineers the freedom to work. However on the other hand some are not pleased with this culture and they argue otherwise. They say that Google’s culture is too informal and the management structure lacks in unity of command at the top. Though for Google this organisational structure and control system acts as unique features of Google culture which allows innovations to take place without any barriers.

ETHICS AND DIVERSITY: Google has a very strong work ethic policy and has also drafted a very practical code of conduct. It also does not allow for any back handed comments as it has forbidden employees from reporting violations of the code of conduct. This ensures that everyone follows the code of conduct and no one creates problems for others. The upper management at Google listens to its employees a lot and values their opinion. There is an open door policy at Google where any employee can discuss any matter with their manager without any fear as the environment is very friendly. It has its own ways of dealing with problems at the company and making it easier for employees to resolve problems. Google has a great diversity program where employees can build their skills and raise their knowledge requirements. It has one of the best work environments where employees are expected to keep a great atmosphere which prevents them from being harassed, intimidated and discriminated against.


One of the innovative techniques used by Google is that its employees are allowed to take their pets inside the office. They are provided with free snacks and on top of it lunch and dinner is prepared by celebrity chef. They have separate snack rooms offering the employees with cereals, cashew nuts, fruit juices, and cappuccino at no cost. It has gymnasium inside office complex and encourages the employees to have regular workouts to keep themselves in good physical condition and on top of that they have the luxury to take a massage inside the office itself if they want. Also the casual dress code at Google gives employees a relaxed homely feeling and helps them to keep their minds off from their busy work schedules.

The emphasis at Google is always on team achievements however at the same time the employees are given proper recognition in their individual performances as well. Another characteristic of Google’s culture is that it does not have formal business meetings. Instead

what they have is like a casual conversation either during lunch breaks at the café or at a tea table which ensures each individual’s contribution to the subject matter. Also it gives them the

feeling that everyone is sitting on the same level. These types of activities reduce the power distance between the management & employees, thereby creating a sense of equality which is part of Google’s culture.

Employees are sometimes given freedom to take risks in their roles to encourage them to be more creative and innovative. This resembles the self-actualisation stage in Maslow’s hierarchy of needs. This “thinking out of the box” policy helps Google to stand out from the competition

while the values of the company also being maintained at the same time.

Google wants employees to maintain the best possible work/life balance, so they offer flexible work hours, part time work options, and telecommuting if the specific job allows. A generous vacation policy is provided and a vacation donation program is also used to provide an opportunity for employees to help out their fellow coworkers during a time of need. The program allows employees to voluntarily donate a portion of their accrued vacation hours to another eligible employee in case of an emergency.

Key managerial practices/policies at Google for improving its human r esources:

1. Google follows '70/20/10' model of Employees' work structure. This refers to a breakdown of working week as below: •70 percent of the employee's time should be spent on the business, fulfilling the job role. •Ten percent of the schedule is time to do 'whatever [the employee] wants' –  time for

innovation and creativity, freedom to think. •Twenty percent of the time –  or one day out of every week a period spent on personal

development of technical projects of their own choice which will ultimately benefit the company It allows generation of new ideas which are often generated by employees down the line.

2. Eliminating friction at every turn: ensuring change can happen quickly and efficiently Google approach to innovation is highly improvisational. Any engineer in the company has a chance to create a new product or feature. This has allowed Google not only to attract high-quality employees but also to create a large volume of new ideas and products.

3. Letting the market choose: crowd-sourcing its product strategy The emphasis in this process is not on identifying the perfect offering, but rather on creating multiple potentially useful offerings and letting the market decide which are best. Even a modest fraction of Google’s more than 132 million users constitutes a massive test bed and

focus group for evaluating the potential of new products.

4. Cultivating a taste for failure and chaos: Google believes that if they don’t  do any of great mistakes, they are just not taking enough risk.

5. Supporting inspiration with data - making extensive, aggressive use of data and testing to support ideas according to a Harvard case study people aren't allowed to say 'I think' but instead must say ‘The data suggest’. Google takes an analytical, fact-based approach. It continually modifies its hiring approach based on an ongoing analysis of which employees perform best and most embody the qualities of 'Googleness‟.

6. Google's use of algorithms in recruitment. It survey current employees on a variety of characteristics and traits, including teamwork, biographical information, past experiences and accomplishments (i.e., have they started a company, written a book, won a championship, set a record).

The culture at Google has three aspects: Honorable work environment, customer oriented business approach and spiritual conduct. Through their work, Google makes sure all three fragments of its business are benefited. Employees are motivated because of the friendly atmosphere in the workplace. Google users are benefited with its cutting edge technological developments and also the organisation as a whole to attain its objectives.

COMPENSATION STRUCTURE: Google stands out as being one of the most sought after and yet one of the most underpaying employers in the industry. However, the HR strategy fits perfectly with the business model and vision at Google  –  wherein employees are attracted not to the short term monetary returns from work, but rather to the support system that could help them create anything. So the work hives at Google have day care and elder care centres, have spa and hair salons, car wash and oil check facilities, and virtually everything that a technology‐obsessed geek would like to worry least about, in form of an all inclusive liberal benefits package, but the actual take‐out cash

component is negligible. The innovative Stock Option system at Google ensures that all employees get compensated competitively due to the remarkable equity growth of the company. So strong is the work culture and employee committed bent upon technology solutions rather than tangible compensation that Google became the first company where the Board of Directors requested for a reduction in their salaries and compensation because they felt they were getting paid more money than they needed. All the employees agreed on the sentiment, and in 2005‐06, the employees formally demanded a wage cut themselves. During said period,

the turnover was 1.43%.

GOOGLE RETENTION POLICY: Herzberg Model Google follows Herzberg’s theory of motivation which says that corporations should reward its employees to motivate its employees. Employees are motivated when they are rewarded with achievements, recognition and responsibility. This is also linked with the hygiene theory which states that if a salary, company policy and working conditions are good then it will motivate them more. It is not necessary for the hygiene factors to be there to motivate an employee but an absence of it will bring negative effects. Training and Development It spends lot of resources on training and development for its employees. Employees are given opportunities to take classes in building up skills such as presentation skills, management skills, writing skills, etc. They have also been given the opportunity to take up foreign language classes for no charge. This is a great way to reward them by giving them more responsibility.

Google has made it mandatory for its employees to go through training and development for a minimum of 120 hours a year. This helps Google employees further their skills professionally and allows them to learn about new professional and technological developments. They do not want anyone to be left out in the learning process. Motivation The top management at Google wants its employees to experiment and come up with new innovative ideas. Google Engineers have been encouraged to spend around 20 percent of their time coming up with new products and offerings which could make a difference in the way things are done. The company supports its employees in a big way by giving them time to innovate. Google is an ethical company and makes sure that its business practices do not break any laws. They make sure that the employees do not break any rules imposed by the company. Google employees are supposed to respect each other, protect the secrets of the company and not harm the company in any manner. Rewards The best thing about Google is the fact that everyone wants to work for it even though they don’t pay as much as other employers within the same industry.  Google only attracts those employees who are not money minded as they have been given the ability to innovate and utilise the great support system offered by Google. Google gives them plenty of benefits so that they don’t have to worry about a lot of stuff. Employees don’t have to worry about their future mainly due to the generous stock option scheme which makes it better for the company due to its rapid growth Google pays great attention to the health of its employees as it hosts an annual health fair with free services such as blood pressure checkups, cholesterol testing, blood tests, eye exams, flu shots, etc. It also has a program for its employees where they give them up to 5k dollars in cash back if they switch to a hybrid vehicle which is great to save the environment. The employees are given good salaries along with bonuses, salary, equity grants and additional bonuses through the Google employee referral program. They also get plenty of employee discounts, free Google goodies as well as subsidies on their travel costs. Benchmarking Google is a company which likes to assess its current situation by spending time evaluating its performance on a quarterly basis. The senior management gauges the company performance and uses it as a basis of coming up with new objectives for the next quarter. The strategic management also allows its employees to ask questions about where the company is headed and how it can increase its performance. Another way of gauging the performance of the company is to constantly subject its employees to anonymous surveys which ask them for their reactions on various subjects. The data gathered from these surveys allows Google to tailor their programs and adjust them according to the needs of the employees. These results are discussed internally and efforts are made to improve working conditions if they are lacking somewhere.

Job Satisfaction One of the biggest threats faced by Google is the fact that they can suffer from brain drain which would affect their long term plans. If Google loses its employees slowly it will not be able to compete. Google has tackled this problem with the help of a retention technique which allow s it to retain its key employees. They have worked out an algorithm which allows them to take care of the problem. The algorithm sorts through employee f eedback history, performance reviews, pay and promotion history. This allows them to find out which of its employees is more likely to quit. It is crucial for Google to prevent its main assets from leaving their organization. It is a death wish for them to lose their most able engineers, designers, developers, executives to a rival. This is one reason why they constantly evaluate their employees and subject them to formal review processes. As mentioned above Google has been spending a lot of time and money on these ventures. Google does not believe in overworking its employees and offers them a proper balance in their work and life so that they do not burn out. Employees are offered options where they can work flexible hours, work part time, and work from home (provided their job functions allow them). It also has a unique system where employees are able to donate a portion of their vacation time to their peers in case of any emergency. Google has benefitted a lot from the 20 percent off time to employees for their personal projects as it has led to successes such as AdSense, Orkut, Gmail and Google News. It should also be noted that the revenues to be generated from these ventures are miniscule as compared to the revenues they make from their search engine and ad revenues. Conclusion Google has one of the best HR strategies planned by any organization. It is lauded for its efforts to make a change in the lives of people and to treat their employees like valuable assets and human beings. It has policy where employees can take time out to relax and enjoy some quality time by them. Google does not pay a very high salary but gives lot of physiological and psychological benefits to the employees. It has made good efforts to ensure that employees remain pleased.

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