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The Concept of HRM

Based on Human Resource Management, 4th edition, by Alan Price

The objectives of this section are to:

  • Outline the variety of ways in which HRM is defined.
  • Offer a working definition for the purposes of this book.
  • Discuss the most influential early models of HRM.
  • Review some of the evidence for the adoption of HRM

Defining human resource management
Many people find HRM to be a vague and elusive concept...

Maps and models of HRM
This section begins with a discussion of various approaches to HRM...

The Harvard map of human resource management
This is probably the most seminal model of HRM and has had a major influence on academic debate on the subject.

Hard HRM
The Michigan model is also known as the 'matching model' or 'best-fit' approach to human resource management.

Guest's Model of HRM
David Guest's British model of HRM has 6 dimensions of analysis

Alternative HRM Models
The terminology used in academic human resource literature is problematic because some authors distinguish between 'the HRM model' as distinct from 'the Personnel model'.

The Discourse of HRM
HRM has been addressed by a number of writers from a 'discourse' perspective.

Professional certification

Different interpretations of HRM

HRM in the USA

HRM in other countries

Schools of thought

Summary
The meaning and prevalence of HRM are topics that continue to attract debate and disagreement. As a consequence, practitioners and textbook authors use a diverse and sometimes contradictory range of interpretations. We found that HRM has a variety of definitions but there is general agreement that it has a closer fit with business strategy than previous models, specifically personnel management. The early models of HRM take either a 'soft' or a 'hard' approach, but economic circumstances are more likely to drive the choice than any question of humanitarianism. The extent of adoption of HRM is also problematic, with many commentators disputing its prevalence and the evidence for adoption still slow in coming.

Further Reading

Managing People   >  HRM and Business Efficiency

HRM Textbooks

Human Resource Management

Human Resource Management, 4th edition
by Alan Price
 Covers all the key aspects of HRM. Available from:
Amazon.co.uk - UK pounds
Amazon.de - Euros
Amazon.fr - Euros
Amazon.it - Euros
Amazon.com - US dollars
Amazon.ca - Can dollars

Fundamentals of Human Resource Management

Fundamentals of Human Resource Management
 Shortened version of Human Resource Management - concise analysis for non-specialists and one-semester courses.
More information and prices from:
Amazon.co.uk - UK pounds
Amazon.de - Euros
Amazon.fr - Euros
Amazon.it - Euros
Amazon.com - US dollars
Amazon.ca - Can dollars

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