Developing a Human Resource strategy
A Tarmac case study

Page 1: Introduction

Tarmac was established in 1903 and is the UK's leading supplier of building materials and aggregates to the building industry.

Tarmac is most often associated with constructing roads or major building projects such as the new Heathrow terminal and Wembley Stadium. However, materials derived from quarrying are used within many different sectors, including manufacturing light bulbs, chewing gum and toothpaste.

Tarmac's operational structure is divided into two key areas: Tarmac UK and Tarmac International. Tarmac UK is sub-divided into two separate businesses:

  • Tarmac Ltd extracts key building aggregates and materials.
  • Tarmac Building Products Ltd focuses on turning raw materials into products useable by the building sector.

Tarmac International develops building products for supply around the world, especially in the United Arab Emirates.

Nearly 11,000 employees work for Tarmac in a variety of work settings that include:

  • 135 quarries
  • 13 wharves
  • 73 asphalt plants
  • 172 concrete plants
  • 36 recycling sites.

In the past, most people's view of a Tarmac employee would have been a man in a hard hat. That is not the case anymore. Tarmac depends on having people with high levels of skill in externally-facing roles such as sales, customer service and marketing, as well as internal roles in IT, finance or procurement (often called purchasing). The recruitment of specialist employees in these roles is now central to Tarmac's growth.

It is said that the most important resource within an organisation is its people. This is because an organisation depends on the skills and capabilities of its employees to meet its mission. Employees are not a static resource. They need to be engaged, interested, developed and motivated. It is through such processes that organisations meet their business objectives and increase their employees' capabilities to create competitive advantage. This helps the organisation to outperform many of its rivals.

This case study focuses on Human Resource Management within Tarmac. It looks at how workforce planning and other HR strategies enable Tarmac to meet its mission: 'To deliver the highest value from our resources for our customers, communities, employees and investors.'

Tarmac | Developing a Human Resource strategy

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