The R.J. Reynolds Tobacco Company

By Nannie M. Tilley | Go to book overview

CHAPTER 13
Preparation for Expansion, 1945-1954

Labor disputes of the 1940s; shortages of manpower and materials during World War II; and changes in leadership, in the type of cigarette demanded by the public, and in sales methods all prompted a reexamination of company policies. Predominant among these changes were the organization and subsequent expansion of the personnel department and the consequent development of innovative personnel programs. During the same period a lively movement in the sales department resulted in the publication of the Reynolds Tobacco Merchandiser, which for sales served much as the Management Bulletin did for manufacturing. Two notable technical developments--the SPD (strip preparation) process and reconstituted leaf--likewise were important factors in stimulating the company's tremendous expansion of the 1950s.


The New Personnel Department

The gradual development and expansion of the personnel department resulted from changes begun in 1919. The employment department, the medical department, the Safety Council, and the Retirement and Insurance Plan thus formed the nucleus for the new venture. Over time it would also administer a job evaluation plan; a safety department to supplement the work of the Safety Council; the communications media; an employee suggestion plan; the work of a pastor-counselor; and company benefits including vacations with pay, allowances for those in the armed services, paid holidays, sick leave, free parking for employees, cafeterias, an aid-to-

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