HRO Today Global Spring 2014 - 11

Cover Story
importance of customer service, as much as the McDonald's menu
and ambience, to win diners in APMEA. " There is a great desire for
popular brands in emerging markets, " says Ruming, McDonald's
vice president and chief people officer in APMEA. " And we have
one of the best-known and well-respected brands anywhere. "
He backs up his assertion citing a new McDonald's in Ho Chi Minh
City in Vietnam. When the first restaurant opened in the country,
35,000 people showed up that initial weekend, the lines stretching
around the block as if a Taylor Swift concert was playing. Says
Ruming, " We figured we'd be busy, but we never expected it would
be that much. "
Customer Focus
McDonald's is employing a variety of different business models
in the disparate regions. In Australia, for instance, the company
uses the conventional franchise model it follows in the United
States, whereby the franchisee owns all the capital stock, runs the
business, and absorbs the cash flow, paying rent and royalties to
McDonald's, which owns the building and the land it sits on.
In the Philippines, all of the Middle East, and in 17 other markets,
the company pursues a developmental licensee model, whereby
McDonald's corporate has no capital invested in the business,
but lends its expertise and support to a local entrepreneur who
pays royalties to the company (the case in Vietnam, where Henry
Nguyen, a Vietnam War veteran who always wanted to open
a restaurant, returned to the country of his birth to launch its
premier McDonald's). In China, the company pursues both of these
business models, as well as variations.
While these business structures are important, Ruming maintains
that the biggest challenge for McDonald's is hiring the right
people. Certainly, in places like China and India, finding people
is no problem. The problem is recruiting individuals who are
people-people-naturally consumer-centric. They also need to have
accumulated at least the equivalent of a high school education,
want to work in a retail setting, and will steadfastly support and
communicate the company's brand and value proposition, " telling
our story in an authentic way, " Ruming says.
Obviously, transforming from 450,000 employees to one million
in less than six years is a huge engagement process. But the
opportunity for individuals who do hire on is enticing, to say the
least. McDonald's believes the company offers the means to lift
someone from one socio-economic group to a higher one. In places
like Mongolia, a job at the company can literally move an entire
family out of poverty, Ruming says.
Just like he did over his career, employees can start with a relatively
SPRING 2014 | www.hroglobal.com
[11]
" There is a great desire for
popular brands in emerging
markets. And we have one
of the best-known and wellrespected
brands anywhere. "
-Shaun Ruming, vice
president and chief people
officer in APMEA, McDonald's
http://www.hroglobal.com

HRO Today Global Spring 2014

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