1. What external factors were affecting UPS’s HR practices? How did UPS respond to these trends?
2. Why is efficiency and safety so important to UPS? What role do the company’s industrial engineers play in how employees do their work?
3. What changes did the company make to its driver training program? What do you think of these changes?
4. What advantages and drawbacks do you see to this training approach for
(a) The trainee and
(b) The company?
It’s the world’s largest package delivery company with the instantly recognizable brown trucks. Every day United Parcel Service (UPS) transports some 15 million packages and documents throughout the United States and to more than 200 countries and territories. Delivering those packages efficiently is what it gets paid to do, and that massive effort wouldn’t be possible without its 99,000-plus drivers. UPS recognizes that it has an HR challenge: hiring and training some 25,000 drivers over the next five years to replace retiring Baby Boomers. But the company has a plan in place that combines its tested business model of uniformity and efficiency (for instance, drivers are trained to hold their keys on a pinky finger so they don’t waste time fumbling in their pockets for the keys) with a new approach to driver training.