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HR Technology Systems: An Evidence-Based Approach to Construct Measurement

Research in Personnel and Human Resources Management

ISBN: 978-1-78756-322-3, eISBN: 978-1-78756-321-6

Publication date: 16 July 2018


Three decades of academic and professional discourse on HR technologies (HRTs) have produced continued disagreement over construct definitions and research streams that are highly fragmented. These realities suggest that greater consistency in meanings is sorely needed if we are to integrate and upgrade knowledge in this area. This chapter draws on the findings of a systematic research review to properly define the content domains of human resource information systems (HRIS), virtual human resources (virtual HR), electronic human resource management (e-HRM), and business-to-employee (B2E) systems. An integrative synthesis was performed on 242 system-level writings that appeared in the literature from 1983 to 2017. The weight of the evidence strongly supports treating HRIS, virtual HR, e-HRM, and B2E systems as independent, complimentary constructs. While the first three comprise a firm’s HRT system, the fourth construct is more appropriately positioned in the business-collaborative system. The sample was further evaluated with an analytic framework to detect patterns of practice in research designs. This revealed that much more attention has been focused on system actions and outcomes than on attitudes and system characteristics. Different units of analysis were well represented aside from trans-organizational studies. Finally, a case is made for better contextualizing HRT research by recognizing differences in assimilation stage, functional penetration, and collective proficiency. These factors are rarely mentioned, let alone studied, raising additional concerns about measurement error. Detailed suggestions are offered on ways to incorporate them. Together, these materials should promote more sophisticated and generalizable assessments of technology, improving our ability to understand its impacts.



Florkowski, G.W. (2018), "HR Technology Systems: An Evidence-Based Approach to Construct Measurement", Buckley, M.R., Wheeler, A.R. and Halbesleben, J.R.B. (Ed.) Research in Personnel and Human Resources Management (Research in Personnel and Human Resources Management, Vol. 36), Emerald Publishing Limited, Bingley, pp. 197-239.



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