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Progressive human resource management and firm performance: Empirical evidence from Indian context

Neha Gahlawat (Department of Human Resources, ICFAI Business School (IBS), The ICFAI Foundation of Higher Education (IFHE), Hyderabad, India)
Subhash C. Kundu (Haryana School of Business, Guru Jambheshwar University of Science and Technology, Hisar, India)

International Journal of Organizational Analysis

ISSN: 1934-8835

Article publication date: 6 December 2018

Issue publication date: 8 July 2019




This study aims to examine the adoption and efficacy level of progressive human resource management (HRM) practices in various organizations operating in India.


Primary data based on 615 respondents from 103 domestic firms and 116 foreign multinational corporations (MNCs) operating in India were gathered and analyzed using statistical techniques like t-test, confirmatory factor analysis and structural equation modeling.


The results reveal that the adoption of progressive HRM practices in form of self-managed teams, flexibility to work flexible hours, use of online mediums to invite applicants, selection of candidates using assessment center and integrity test, performance based incentives, flexible benefits, facility of e-learning and innovative management development programs is positively related to firm performance in Indian context. Using institutional and cultural perspective, the findings have also demonstrated that their exist differences in adoption of progressive HRM practices between foreign MNCs and domestic firms.

Practical implications

Domestic firms in India are needed to learn some important managerial lessons from the foreign MNCs, especially when their adoption of progressive practices results in more increase in firm performance. These are suggested to implement a broad range of innovative HR practices like MNCs to improve growth potential, instead of focusing on two or three practices.


By exploring the differences between domestic and foreign MNCs, this study has offered some key insights on the extent of adoption and operationalization of progressive HRM in current Indian business environment.



Gahlawat, N. and Kundu, S.C. (2019), "Progressive human resource management and firm performance: Empirical evidence from Indian context", International Journal of Organizational Analysis, Vol. 27 No. 3, pp. 471-493.



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