The decade has witnessed unprecedented interest in what has been seen as a radically new direction in the management of people in organisations: human resource management (HRM). HRM has, however, been bedevilled by controversy and ambiguity to the extent of being regarded as just another “flavour of the month” management rhetoric. There is little consensus about what HRM means and what it entails in practice. Conceptual clarity is sought by adopting a multiparadigmatic approach to analyse HRM, which is classified into “hard” and “soft” variants. The use of paradigmatic “frames” or “lenses” enriches our understanding of them, and should enhance our appreciation of the implications of different approaches in the management of employees.
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