Strategic Dilemmas: How Managers Use Hr Practices to Meet Multiple Goals

27 Pages Posted: 1 May 2020

See all articles by Jae Eun Lee

Jae Eun Lee

Hongik University - School of Business

Rosemary Batt

Cornell University - School of Industrial and Labor Relations

Lisa M. Moynihan

London Business School

Date Written: September 2019

Abstract

Contrary to the classic assumptions in the business and human resource (HR) strategy literatures, real‐world organizations often pursue multiple and potentially contradictory performance goals. They may adopt ‘hybrid’ strategies to maximize both differentiation and low cost — leading middle managers to face dilemmas in how to achieve different goals using the same HR practices. We link employee‐level surveys of HR practices to establishment‐level data on service quality, labour efficiency and profitability to examine the effects of HR practices on these outcomes. We find that establishments with greater use of high involvement practices have significantly higher service quality, which mediates the relationship between HR practices and profitability. Findings for labour efficiency are positive, but generally not significant. These findings also have implications for the quality of jobs.

Suggested Citation

Lee, Jae Eun and Batt, Rosemary and Moynihan, Lisa M., Strategic Dilemmas: How Managers Use Hr Practices to Meet Multiple Goals (September 2019). British Journal of Industrial Relations, Vol. 57, Issue 3, pp. 513-539, 2019, Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=3589672 or http://dx.doi.org/10.1111/bjir.12433

Jae Eun Lee (Contact Author)

Hongik University - School of Business ( email )

72-1 Sangsu-Dong, Mapo-Gu
Seoul, 121-791
Korea, Republic of (South Korea)

Rosemary Batt

Cornell University - School of Industrial and Labor Relations ( email )

Ithaca, NY 14853-3901
United States
607-254-4437 (Phone)
607-255-1836 (Fax)

Lisa M. Moynihan

London Business School ( email )

Sussex Place
Regent's Park
London, London NW1 4SA
United Kingdom

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