Management is an activity being carried out in a formal structure called “organization”. These set of activities are coordinated to achieve goals and objectives.According to the dictionary; Management means directing and controlling a group of one or more people or an organization to reach a goal.
Planning, organizing, staffing, directing and controlling are the five main managerial functions essential in an organization for objectives achievements.. These functions are linked to one another and they have to be followed in the correct order to be effective.
To discuss how these functions has to be implemented to be efficient, the MCB Group, more precisely, the Mauritius Commercial Bank, has been taken as example. Established since 1st September 1838, the MCB Ltd is the longest-established and one of the leading banking institution in Mauritius. Backed by its sound business model, modern channel capabilities and high quality customer service, the Bank has, throughout its history, been true to its guiding principle of assisting in the advancement of individuals, corporates and the country at large, thus playing a key role in the socio-economic development of Mauritius. (https://www.mcb.mu/en/personal/about-us)
Since it is complex to analyze the management functions of the whole group, the Retail Strategic Business Unit (SBU), has been taken as sample for this discussion. This comprises of the 39 branches of the MCB Ltd.
Functions of Management :
To plan means to think about future actions that needs to be done in order to achieve previously set of goals and objectives. A financial year in the finance sector starts from the 01st July and ends on the 30st June of the next year, and at this period, a strategy is set up to start the new financial year. At the MCB Ltd, the vision statement is ” Everyday, we will help make something happen”, this is what is promised to customers, a unique journey towards the realization of their dreams. The mission statements of the bank are numerous;
• We will keep finding ways to meet the needs of our customers.
• We will listen to them and help them achieve their goals.
• We will help people with ideas to be entrepreneurs.
• We will be worthy of our shareholders’ confidence.
• We will do what we can to make the world a better, greener place.
• And we will never go away.
The mission and vision statements are the drivers to the goals achievements. The MCB Ltd often refers to the carrot and stick approach, where the objectives is the carrot and the stick refers to the vision and mission statements. At the start of the Financial year, the three groups of Managers meet and discussed past year performance and elaborate new strategy for the coming year. The MCB Ltd.’s objectives are guided by the Key Performance Indicator( KPI) and they are given according to a specific branch and depends on previously attained objectives. Each employee is given a target and has to abide to service standards defined by the Bank. By planning, a strategy is elaborated and since everyone is looking in the same direction, the goals seems to be more achievable. There is a group effort to attained them. All employees irrespective of their job title are involved, everyone participates in period of sales and to encourages people to use new features. Each month with the Supervisor, there is a discussion about results obtained from each strategy set up, either it is maintained or changed, depending on the results obtained. Every employee holds a tracking record, this enables the hierarchy to identify any gaps and to rectify them in sufficient time. Once the planning is done correctly, the branch starts to organize the set of strategy to be adopted.
Organizing means identifying and grouping the work to be done, defining responsibility and delegating authority and establishing relationship to enable people to work together efficiently. At the MCB Group Ltd, there are many departments, they are also known as Business Unit (BU). The process of organizing takes place at various level, through BU’s, where each department is responsible of for a specific operation, example are ; credit analyst department for loan or credit card application, Corporate banking for management of Company’s accounts. There are many departments and the specialization of each one is complex, as for planning, the Retail Sbu will be taken as sample to discuss this function.
At the beginning of every financial year, the Head of Retail, the Regional Managers and the Branch Managers, have a meeting for objectives and goals to be achieved. Thereafter, the branch manager and branch supervisors together allocate respective targets to every employee. For example, the cross selling of monthly plan, the tellers who are the main point of contact are given quotes to be distributed to each potential customer. The selling of E-statement, as well is done by tellers, this is a service accessible to everyone who has an e-mail address. The Customer Service Representative are given as target the sales of credit cards or prepaid cards, for this the customer needs to call at the bank and be computer literate, and the Branch Managers are given Loans to sell. Each targets are given according to the employees’ job profile and the products’ features and complexity.
There is also a teamwork between a teller and the Customer Service Representative or Customer Service Representative (CSR) and the Manager. This occurs when a customer’s query cannot be entertained by the first point of contact he meets. Therefore the staffs in the branch work together to give him satisfaction, for example a customer calling for a loan will be given primary information by the CSR at first, and then directed to the Manager for the process. The Supervisor is responsible for the monitoring of the targets set for the Tellers and CSRs and the latter reports to him for clarification and advices. This enables personnel development also, in the future, a teller is called to be a CSR, these will help to prepare him for the next career level. Organizing is important in our day to day work since specialization reduces workload and increases productivity, everyone is well versed with the job assigned to them. It also provides a clear picture of the hierarchy and everyone know to whom he is reportable.
After planning and organizing, the next function present at the MCB Ltd is staffing. It is the part of management process concerned with the recruitment of workforce and allocating them to functions where they will be efficient. Staffing not only consists of recruiting, it also comprises of the training offered to employees, promotions, appraisals, remuneration and development. At the MCB Ltd, this is a continuous process, since there are staff movements all through the year either because of promotions or staff rotation. This function is mainly carried out by the Human Resourced Department, vacancies are advertised either on the bank’s website, internally or on job recruiting sites. The bank is also involved in the development of its employees and provide for regular trainings to enhance quality of work, experience and for knowledge growth. These trainings are provided every semester, it consists of Microsoft Excel’s trainings, stress Management’s courses, Customer service trainings among others. These training are provided for each employee and also depends of the job profile of the employee to ensure effectiveness.
At the MCB Ltd, there is the Study Assistance Scheme (SAS), this is a sponsorship offered to every eligible employee to encourage them to continue further studies. Staffing provides a sense of importance, since training provided are beneficial for the employee, he can deliver better service as adequate trainings are provided. It encourages employee’s growth, everyone is called to be promoted in the future, encouraging further studies and courses gives the opportunity to every employee to obtain a promotion.
Directing is referred to as the process of instructing, guiding, monitoring the performance of employees in order to attain pre-determined objectives. Directing is considered as the heart of the management process, since it is only by providing guidance to the employees that the work planned to be done will be carried out by the employees. At the MCB Ltd, each BU or branch is under the supervision of a Branch Manager and a Supervisor, both of them work together and provide direction to every employee. Once the yearly objectives are set, it is monitored by the Supervisor who is reportable to the Branch Manager. Monthly meetings with employees are held, where the sales figures are discussed, employees can voice out their difficulties and measures are taken to help everyone in fields where they are lagging behind. It is important to note that only one employee will not be able to achieve these goals, everyone is aware that they need to work together. In fact, the set goals once achieved are rewarded by a performance bonus, and if the branch goals are not reached, then it will mean, that the employees did not perform well enough.
There is a programme called the “Referral Programme”, this creates a record of customers whom we met and what products they can be offered. Even if the sales are not successful, the effort carried out will be taken into consideration. In order to motivate the employees, Branch Managers and Supervisors helps there employees in selling of products, this creates a good team spirit, where those in the top level hierarchy helps others in order to meet set objectives. Without directing, the planning, organizing and staffing alone will be inefficient.
Controlling consists of the monitoring and modification of the performance of the organization. Once the all plans and strategy are set and that directions have been given, the Management needs to check on results obtained so far.
At the bank there is also an appraisal which is done twice yearly. These reviews help in identifying strengths and weaknesses of every employee. The first appraisal is done at the beginning of the year, it is done to have a view on the achieved goals and where the employees are lagging behind. After this first discussion, done with the Supervisor, employees decides on new strategies to obtain better results where they are lagging behind. The final one is done at the end of the year, and normally a change can be seen between the two, since efforts have been made. These appraisals allow employees to be more productive, one employee may be doing better than his colleague in a field, these allow sharing of knowledge between each employee. This will benefit not only the Company, but the customers also.
At the MCB Ltd, the focus is not only on sales, and the main focus is, customer. The customer’s survey has also been introduced by the bank in order to monitor the customers experience with the bank. There is an instant survey done after completing the transaction, and an after sale survey carried out by phone. These survey’s questions form parts of the bank’s service standard, and it should be abide to. Another type of survey is the one carried out by an MCB staff, attached is a sample of the questionnaire.
In the end, it can be seen that the five managerial functions set in the correct order carry mainly benefits to the organization. Changes occur in the country, in the organization, and the functions are here for to be a guide, it can be modified, changed but the concept will be the same. The MCB Ltd is a good example, being in the country for more than a decade, the organization will continue to innovate and grow. After all, every day, they help in making something happen.