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Strategic alignment of IT and human resources management in manufacturing SMEs: Empirical test of a mediation model

François L'Écuyer (Université du Québec en Abitibi Temiscamingue, Rouyn-Noranda, Canada)
Louis Raymond (Université du Québec à Trois-Rivières, Trois-Rivieres, Canada)
Bruno Fabi (Université du Québec à Trois-Rivières, Trois-Rivieres, Canada)
Sylvestre Uwizeyemungu (Université du Québec à Trois-Rivières, Trois-Rivieres, Canada)

Employee Relations

ISSN: 0142-5455

Article publication date: 24 July 2019

Issue publication date: 24 July 2019

Abstract

Purpose

Within the manufacturing sector, small- and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) face specific challenges with regard to their strategic HRM capabilities. In this context, an emerging issue for both researchers and practitioners regards HR information systems (HRIS), i.e. the deployment of strategic IT capabilities to enable the firm’s high-performance work system (HPWS) capabilities and thus improve the performance of its HR function. The purpose of this paper is to address this issue by using a capability-based mediation perspective to study the strategic alignment of HR and IT.

Design/methodology/approach

A survey study of 206 manufacturing SMEs was realized and the data thus obtained was analyzed through structural equation modeling.

Findings

Results confirm that the HRIS capabilities of SMEs influence the performance of the HR function through their strategic alignment with the HPWS capabilities of these enterprises.

Practical implications

The results suggest that the manufacturing SMEs most active in developing their HRIS capabilities while developing their HPWS capabilities are most likely to develop a competitive advantage through the improved performance of their HR function. This is especially important in a time when firms of all sizes across the globe are waging a “war for talent,” and are enabled to do so by their strategic use of IT.

Originality/value

The results of the study constitute a valid basis for prediction and prescription with regards to the strategic alignment of human and IT resources.

Keywords

Citation

L'Écuyer, F., Raymond, L., Fabi, B. and Uwizeyemungu, S. (2019), "Strategic alignment of IT and human resources management in manufacturing SMEs: Empirical test of a mediation model", Employee Relations, Vol. 41 No. 5, pp. 830-850. https://doi.org/10.1108/ER-09-2018-0258

Publisher

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Emerald Publishing Limited

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