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Google Case

In: Business and Management

Submitted By Qiuyan
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Table of contents
Executive summary------------------------2
1. Introduction------------------------------------------------------------------------------2
2. Explanation of Google’s success from a motivational theory perspective-----------2
2.1. Brief introduction of Google’s culture------------------------------------------2
2.2. Hierarchy of Needs Theory and ERG Theory---------------------------------3
2.3. Expectancy Theory---------------------------------------------------------------4
2.4. Three needs theory--------------------------------------------------------------4
3. Hiring practice in Google-----------------------------------5
4. Job design in Google-----------------------------------------6
5. Many questions on hiring practice and job design in Google--------------------------6
6. Practical implications-----------------------7
7. Conclusion--------------------7
8. Reference list---------------------8

Executive summary
Google is a successful company among employees and IT industry that vast candidates want to join into Google and become a ‘Googler’ (Page & Brin, 2012). Based on its success, it is obvious that there are many unique strategies implemented in Google. For example, motivational company value, rigorous hiring practices and autonomic job design principles.
This report attempts to explore these main tactics behind Google’s success. Besides, it also analyses many motivational theories to evaluate Google’s practices. While all information within this report has come from vast resources, ranging from academic journals and books, the lack of academic investigations such as survey etc. has to be recognised on analysis of practice of Google.

1. Introduction
The known Google was set up in September 1998 by its founders Larry Page and Sergey Brin who created an epoch-making search engine for people and even changed the world (Byrnes & Cowan, 2007). According to investigation (CNN Money, 2012), Google’s net income rose to about $2.8 billion, up 11% from a year earlier in the second quarter 2012. In the furious competition of cyber world, Google healthily develop yet which is quite rare and precious. Google’s success gives the business world lots of enlightenments on organizational behaviour especially employee motivation (Cleverly, 2011). In addition, Google also creates the unique hiring practices to hire the employees. Furthermore, the clear job design also plays a vital role in Google’ success.
This report explains Google’s success on its culture by many motivational theories and critically evaluates hiring practice and job design principles of Google.

2. Explanation of Google’s success from a motivational theory perspective
2.1. Brief introduction of Google’s culture
With the ongoing growth so far, Google has generated a unique system of human resource management to win a place around the world (Finkle, 2012). For example, as the 5th, 8th and 10th ‘top ten reasons’ said (case study), Google sets up a really particular and seductive environment for their workers, which is an obvious showing of corporate culture partly.
It is a fact that the favourable corporate culture can make enterprise has a positive effect as a result of improving competitiveness of enterprise (Colvin, 2006). For internal formation of enterprise, these methods of ‘top ten reasons’ could form cohesion force, promote spiritual power, and improve innovation skill.
Moreover, based on meeting physical needs, Google pays much esteem and attention for talent and innovation. As the 3rd, 6th, 7th, and 9th ‘top ten reasons’ said (case study), Google gives maximum opportunities and trust for employees and then allows them to show their ingenuity furthest.
All of these ideas are exactly what Google seeks perfect organisational culture.

2.2. Hierarchy of Needs Theory and ERG Theory
These ideas, which aim to ‘make employees life easier and happier’ and present Google culture in fact, are based on motivational theories.
In Maslow’s book (1943) “A Theory: the great name still Motivation Psychological Review”, the hierarchy of needs theory was stated. The theory pointed to the five needs of people divided physiological need, security need, social demand, respect need and self-actualization need respectively, ranging from the lower-level to the higher-level. These needs should be fulfilled step by step from lower to higher level. According to the hierarchy of needs, after satisfying the low-level basically, this will reduce its incentive effects for food and housing and its advantageous position will be changed to high-level needs. That is, until the requirement of food and housing are fulfilled, the higher expectation (such as working positivity, innovation etc.) could appear. In this case, Google does provide the basic physical needs for employee by the 10th free lunch, the 4th perfect entertainment facilities such as gym, pool tables, video games, the 5th autonomic time and comfortable commuting condition etc. It follows that the employees’ daily-life needs are satisfied at this company.
In particular, Google’s employees and their families could even enjoy much more various subsidies. For example, recently CNN Money (2012) reported that Google has pushed a new policy called ‘death benefits’ for its employees. More specially, the spouse could obtain 50% of deceased’s lifetime salary over 10 years, and moreover, ‘dead Googler’s stocks would be vested immediately. Besides, their children would get $1000 per month until they are over 19-years-old or 23-years-old as full-time students. This is also supported by Alderfer’s ERG Theory (Arnolds & Boshoff, 2002), that the above mentioned benefits meet the existence need, the relatedness need, and the growth need of employees.
Thus, it can be seen that Google offers all of the best food, culture entertainment activities, heath care and the best benefits to all of its employees. As a result, the employees could focus on their jobs better belonging to this so-called high-level. These interesting ideas break traditional corporate management but Google benefits from these “reasons” to get a top in some way (Finkle, 2012).

2.3. Expectancy Theory
Salary and other financial rewards are a fundamental part of the employment relationship. Rewards based on jobs finished, this is in order to keep internal equity and motivate employees to work hard. Google provides higher compensation for employees in addition to the basic wages. The company implements an internal shareholding strategy (Thiry & Cappelli, 2011). The how much the salary depends on how much contribution individuals made for the company. Therefore, employees could be promoted to a higher level through hard work, and the Employee Stock Ownership Plan (ESOP) makes employees much loyal for company. On the Vroom’s Expectancy Theory, Nasri & Charfeddmein (2012) state that, ‘Individuals, acting through self-interest, adopt courses of action perceived as maximizing the probability of desirable outcomes for themselves’. Therefore, employees will work harder for better pay in Google.

2.4. Three needs theory
Most importantly, Google encourages its employees to innovate furthest. Here everyone strives for research and development of new production. Google not only provides enough resources for everyone to practice such as advanced equipments, but also initiates the ‘20% of working time’ project to make employees to do their own interests (Finkle, 2012). As the expectation of Google, there were many new Google’s products generated by this project, such as Gmail. It can be seen that the project is effective on innovation for Google and all employees’ great ideas can be valued and applied. Besides, Google holds a company-wide common suggestion forum regularly. Anyone can propose their originality and innovations at the meeting (Finkle, 2012). The employees come from either Mountain View, California or developing country could be respected their new ideas and diversity of background in irrelevant to their culture and belief. In this regard, the 8th ‘top ten reasons’ can express this Google’s principle well. This way also improves the employees’ motivation to work harder. The innovation not only cares about good reward, but also the employees could achieve their value by that. Google gives them these chances to show their intelligence in front of everyone. According to three needs theory (Beugelsdijk & Smeets, 2008), people desire to succeed by doing things better than others and finish a challenge goals differing from others. The employees use the 20% working time to think about new idea and present in the front of people which meet the need for achievement. As a result, employees are willing to actively serve for Google.

3. Hiring practice in Google
Nowadays, it is an era of knowledge economy that talents have significant influences for an enterprise. Google thinks the well-educated employees and talents especially with professional knowledge are huge fortune more than the real money in the short term. It also thinks that a talented person is a core competitive advantage in the progress of an organization (GOOGLE Inc., 2011). In its current hiring practice, the managers perform standardization recruitment program which the fitted applicants are selected out by database firstly. Briefly, in Google’s recruiting module, there are six channels to receive the applications. They are Google website, their famous recruitment website, internal referral, internal headhunter, external headhunter and on campus. The application from wide range is so as to keep face to everyone to make sure that Google could recruit each suitable talent maximally. Secondly, Google prepares six rounds of interview for each candidate to confirm whether the candidate really could serve for the development of company. Moreover, in each interview, the candidate will talk with more than six interviewers including the human resource managers and even the colleagues who will cooperate with them in the future. This way is in order to assess whether the candidate could adapt the work team and environment. All of them, it is a fact that Google has spent a large amount of time and money into recruiting potential talent. Therefore, a number of talents work for Google, impeccable working and life condition and added incentive policies make sure Google’s success.

4. Job design in Google
Job design is also an essential factor for Google’s success as well. The employees often change continually their jobs until they find the most suitable job for them. In order to offer time to make the employees innovate and independently control time, in the 70/20/10 time distribution model, the staffs are encouraged to use 30 percent of their time to do individual things and 10 percent of their working hours are distributed for reformation, innovation (GOOGLE Inc., 2011). While 20 percent time is for ‘individual development, it will finally benefit the company. These principles also reflect Google’s culture which are people-oriented and pursuit of innovation. The freedom and interesting environment of Google can also encourage its employees more participating in their jobs.

5. Summary how the culture facilitates Google’s success
To sum up, above principles both aim to inspire the employees’ motivation. Google's success comes from treating employees as valued stokeholds, and recognising that they are ultimately individuals’ behaviour with personal values, personalities and self-concepts that require dignity, nurturing and recognition. The strategies Google applied not only focus on meet the basic physical needs, but also pay attention to psychic requirements. It can be seen that the employees work and live on a family-friendly and comfortable environment without the stress of basic needs. In this environment, the employees make own interests to associate with the company’s spontaneously. They work hard positively for Google as well as for themselves. The person-organisation value congruence generated leads to higher job satisfaction, loyalty as well as lower stress and employee turnover, and reaches the company’s success finally.

6. Practical implications
Although these motivational principles assist Google to get success by inspire employees’ initiative and innovation, more and more enormous expenses on benefits etc. have plagued Google probably in the economic downturn and market saturated relatively. In addition, not all companies can follow Google’s model to develop because of different situations such as history. However, it is considerable that some basic ways can be learned and reform by other companies.

7. Conclusion
This research report examines the Google’s value on the effects of employees’ motivation in case. It can be seen that it is an indispensable part of successful enterprise that companies have to establish the good corporate value (Colvin, 2006). Google’s corporate value creates an excellent environment to improve staffs’ quality and moral. The employees motivated also help Google’s success significantly.
The report draws on many findings coming from academic journals. Though these journals are doctorial, many real interviews are necessary to discuss Google’s success in the future.

8. Reference List
Arnolds, C. A. & Boshoff, C. 2002, 'Compensation, esteem valence and job performance: an empirical assessment of Alderfer's ERG theory ', International Journal of Human Resource Management, vol. 13, no. 4, pp. 697-719.
Beugelsdijk, S. & Smeets, R. 2008, 'Entrepreneurial Culture and Economic Growth: Revisiting McClelland's Thesis', American Journal of Economics & Sociology, vol. 67, no. 5, pp. 915-939.
Byrnes, N. & Cowan, C. 2007, ‘The High Cost of Wooing Google’, BusinessWeek, no. 4043, pp. 50-56.
Cleverly, S. 2011, “Soft skills come out on top in Google review on managers”, Manager, pp. 66.
Colvin, R. 2006, Employer Profile – Google: Searching for talent, Employee Benefits, pp 66, London.
Finkle, T. A. 2012, 'Corporate Entrepreneurship and Innovation in Silicon Valley: The Case of Google, Inc', Entrepreneurship: Theory & Practice, vol. 36, no. 4, pp. 863-884.
Goldman, D. 2012, NEW YORK: CNNMoney
GOOGLE Inc.2011, 'Soft skills come out on top in Google review on managers', Manager: British Journal of Administrative Management, no. 74, pp. 6.
Jurga, D. 2008, The Role of Organisational Culture in Sustaining Corporate Entrepreneurship, Economics and Management.
Kuntze, R. & Matulich, E. 2009, Google: searching for value, Journal of Case Research in Business and Economics.
Kousha,K.,Thelwall, M.,Rezaie, S.2011, “Assessing the citation impact of books: The role of Google Books, Google Scholar, and Scopus”, Journal of the American Society for Information Science & Technology, vol. 62, no. 11, pp. 2147-2164
Nasri, W. & Charfeddme, L. 2012,'Motivating Salespeople to Contribute to Marketing Intelligence Activities: An Expectancy Theory Approach', International Journal of Marketing Studies, vol. 4, no. 1, pp. 168-175.
PAGE, L. & BRIN, S.2012,'Google Inc.: The world's leading Internet search engine ', Google Case Study: The World's Leading Internet Search Engine, pp. 1-14.
THIRY, K. & CAPPELLI, G. 2011, 'DaVita, Google Dole Out Top Equity Awards in April', Compliance Week, vol. 8, no. 89, pp. 43-43.

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