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Subject Key questions on HRM transferability across national borders
Satu Lähteenmäki & Maarit Viljanen; Turku School of Economics and Business Administration, Finland
Outline There is a growing body of studies supporting the view that building an internally integrated HRM bundle gives the best results in terms of HRM effectiveness. There are also signs that the universal applicability of HRM bundle is not self-evident, and, therefore, HRM needs to be studied in context. This case research was designed to study the transferability of HRM bundles across national borders in four foreign acquisitions. The purpose of the study is to develop an evaluation tool that helps the companies in defining when HRM bundle is 1) more or less directly
applicable, 2) when and how it needs to be modified and 3) which parts of it need to be tailored locally. Our findings support the European view that emphasizes the contextual nature of HRM by showing that universal applicability not even company wide and not even for the best working HRM bundle is not easily gained. According to our study the fit with the psychological contract as well as the responsiveness of the HRM to the local cultural and institutional context are emphasized when transferring HRM. The evaluation matrix developed in this study is aimed at helping the decision makers in the rope dancing between diversification and integration of HRM when transferring HRM across the borders.
Source Paper presented at the 5th conference on human resource development research and practice across Europe: International, comparative and cross-cultural dimensions of HRD. University of Limerick, 27-28 May 2004 (Abstract; full paper incl. in CD-ROM).
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