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Harnessing skills of the overqualified: Building human capital pool for competitive advantage

Brian Beal (Freelance Writer)

Human Resource Management International Digest

ISSN: 0967-0734

Article publication date: 11 July 2016

Abstract

Purpose

Many organizations hold the traditional view that due to the potential of higher job dissatisfaction and employee turnover rates, hiring overqualified job candidates is risky. The purpose of this paper is to take an alternative perspective, using human capital and resource-based theories to propose that hiring overqualified job candidates adds to a firm’s human capital depth. This additional human capital depth, in turn, enables firms to improve near-term organizational effectiveness and, ultimately, build long-term competitive advantage. Thus, the conceptual framework makes reference to deployment of the overqualified as an under-used source of human capital.

Design/methodology/approach

This paper reviews theory and proposes a conceptual framework for reimaging overqualified human resources.

Findings

There are powerful benefits to hiring overqualified job candidates; however, by not hiring overqualified job candidates, organizations are missing out on a large, easily available, and potentially lower cost source of highly skilled human capital.

Originality/value

This paper uses human capital and resource-based theory to propose a conceptual framework which makes four key contributions. First, the authors propose that hiring overqualified job candidates increases an organization’s human capital depth. Next, this increased human capital leads to near-term improvements in employee performance and organizational effectiveness. In turn, firms using career development exercises such as job crafting, mentoring, and/or informal leadership to retain overqualified human capital are more likely to convert near-term organizational effectiveness into long-term competitive advantage.

Keywords

Acknowledgements

Retraction notice

The Publisher wishes to retract the precis article “Harnessing skills of the overqualified: Building human capital pool for competitive advantage”, published in Human Resource Management International Digest, Vol. 24 No. 5, 2016. It has come to the attention of Emerald Publishing that this precis article contains large sections of unattributed text taken from the original research article “Reimagining overqualified human resources to promote organizational effectiveness and competitive advantage”, by David M. Sikora, Katina W. Thompson, Zachary A. Russell, Gerald R. Ferris, published in Journal of Organizational Effectiveness: People and Performance, Vol. 3 No. 1, 2016.

Precis articles are intended to summarise original academic research articles for a different audience, and should not include verbatim passages from the original articles. This error occurred due to a miscommunication in the commissioning process.

To avoid any repeated incidents of this nature, Emerald has fully revised its guidelines and briefed its Commissioning Editors. Human Resource Management International Digest sincerely apologises to the original authors and its readers for this error. The original article can be viewed here: https://doi.org/10.1108/JOEPP-03-2015-0012.

Citation

Beal, B. (2016), "Harnessing skills of the overqualified: Building human capital pool for competitive advantage", Human Resource Management International Digest, Vol. 24 No. 5, pp. 22-24. https://doi.org/10.1108/HRMID-04-2016-0053

Publisher

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Emerald Group Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2016, Emerald Group Publishing Limited