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Google and Amazon Case Study

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Emma Latter

Lauren Daniel

Dr. Masier


28 February 2019

Google and Amazon Case Study

Amazon and Google are two of the most dominant companies on the planet. While they both have their respective mission statements; Google's “to organize the world’s information and make it universally accessible and useful,” and Amazon’s “to be Earth’s most customer-centric company, where customers can find and discover anything they might want to buy online, and endeavors to offer its customers the lowest possible prices,” at which they have both surpassed in achieving (How Search Works)( (Amazon's Global Career Site). Not all their success boils down to innovative business planning and their ability to find the best-growing market to thrive and profit from (Cohan, Peter, 2013). A substantial amount of Google and Amazon’s success is attributed to how well each of these companies treats their employees and their specialized work culture and environments. These successful companies work hard to recruit exceptional talent to keep them at a competitive advantage and in return provide their employees with various benefits and perks not only to increase employee performance, satisfaction, and lessen attrition rates (Root, George, 2016). But also to cater to their clients and provide them with the best experience possible to gain their loyalty.

Google’s History

Google’s legacy began in 1998 with Larry Page and Sergey Brin by developing Internet-based search services (How We Started and Where We Are Today | Google). At the time Google was not the first search engine; in fact, it had multiple competitors when it entered the market. However, Google’s edge which lead it to more popularity was their page rank algorithm. The page rank algorithm works by “counting the number and quality of links to a page to determine a rough estimate of how important the website is… The underlying assumption is that more important websites are likely to receive more links from other websites” and the more important the site, the higher up the search list it was (Page Rank Algorithm and Implementation, 2018). Consumers grew fond of this algorithm which led to Google’s growth to the most widely used multinational technology company it is today.

Google Case, Motivating Factors, and People Operations

Now that Google is such a prominent organization, every detail about Google and their decisions are looked upon. However most specifically what will be talked about is how they treat their employees. The case study speaks on how Google is known for its perks that tie into their philosophy of valuing employees and that “life at Google is not all work” (The Google Way of Motivating Employees, 2018). For example, Google’s headquarters, Googleplex, has an environment that stimulates creativity and innovation (Inside Google's Culture of Success and Employee Happiness, 2019). Their employees have the ability to play volleyball, table tennis, work on other projects not assigned, and relax all at work which makes Google employees feel like they are on a “college campus” rather than at work (Inside Google's Culture of Success and Employee Happiness, 2019). Google creates unique working environments unlike other companies such as Amazon to emphasize employee empowerment in that employees are individually responsible for their decisions, actions, and innovations as long as they are productive (Inside Google's Culture of Success and Employee Happiness, 2019). Google also has notable benefits and perks for their employees, opportunities for their employees to learn and grow in the organization through continuing their schooling while working, and various types of insurance benefits (Inside Google's Culture of Success and Employee Happiness, 2019).

 Google has a culture where managers are seen as credible, employees are treated with respect, and workplace policies and practices are implemented fairly (Inside Google's Culture of Success and Employee Happiness, 2019). They also do not dismiss emotional intelligence and adaptive leadership when recruiting and selecting (Use Adaptive Leadership Skills to Become a Great Leader). Googles Human Resources department, or their People Operations, can use their highly trained managers and leaders in order to develop and train employees to have high emotional intelligence and adaptive leadership. Therefore, their hiring processes are long and intensive, but if you want to run an extraordinary company, you need to hire extraordinary people. And to do that, you need to be very good at hiring and firing. However, once someone is hired the People Operations department goes above and beyond to keep employee satisfaction high and attrition rates low.  

To keep employee satisfaction high and attrition rates low decisions made by the People Operations about employees are mainly data driven. Google is frequently taking surveys and collecting data on employees about how they feel about various HR programs (Inside Google's Culture of Success and Employee Happiness, 2019). They also create many job programs to help motivate employees and then implement the one's employees prefer (Inside Google's Culture of Success and Employee Happiness, 2019). People data is a significant factor in gathering information for keeping employees happy as it is the “information and insight that an organization has available on its various pools of people collected from any one of their system such as HRIS, payroll, benefits, workforce management system or talent management system” (People Data). Their People Operations states that the programs implemented, the people data collected, as well as their work environment and culture, are associated with higher productivity. All these factors make Google a top contender in companies that people strive to work for.

Amazon’s History

        Amazon was founded in July of 1994 by Jeffrey Bezos. The name Amazon was founded soon after by the Amazon River which is the largest in the world. They also named it Amazon because it would show up at the begin of the alphabet. The site Amazon was first launched in 1995. The first product that Amazon sold were books. Jeff had a vision that the company would have tremendous growth and dominate e-commerce. He wanted Amazon to be able to sell everything early on. Amazon headquarters is now located in Seattle Washington. According to Business insider “ In July, Bezos reached a new milestone: his net worth hit $150 billion, making him, as Bloomberg put it, the richest person in modern history” (Hartmans, Avery, 2019). Amazon sells a variety of products. They use a method called “Seller to Buyer”. What makes Amazon different from other big-box retailers is the attention to detail. When an order in places online a worker goes down the aisle where that product is and picks it off the shelf and places it in a yellow bin and sent along a conveyor belt and packed and then shipped to the customer.



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