Human Resource Management, Social Innovation and Technology: Volume 14

Table of contents

(16 chapters)
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Purpose

The aim of the chapter is to understand the role of trust and social cohesion in the effects of New Ways of Working.

Design

The study consists of a cross-sectional survey (N = 549) at a Dutch insurance company with four locations. NWW was introduced in one of the locations 15 years ago, the other locations only recently. We present and test a model in which trust and social cohesion are mediators between NWW and performance.

Findings

The implementation of NWW leads to better performance (Beta 0.16, p < 0.001). However, the main effect is explained completely by the mediating role of trust (between employees-managers and between colleagues) and social cohesion. The number of days working at home has no significant relationship to performance.

Research Implications

The theory and findings of this chapter call for further elaboration in research: more contextualization of these data is needed and more comprehensive theoretical models, such as the role of personality, task and function.

Practical Implications

If employees feel to be trusted by their supervisors and colleagues, the performance will increase, ‘even’ if they work at home or in flexible offices. The implementation of NWW will therefore only be beneficial if there are trustful relations and attention is paid to social cohesion of the group.

Originality

The study is among the first to prove the relationship between NWW and performance and more importantly, it is one of the first in explaining that relationship by pointing on the mediating role of trust and social cohesion.

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Purpose

This chapter aims to explore how social innovation can be achieved through providing employees with information to enhance participation in decision-making.

Design/Methodology/Approach

The chapter takes a largely theoretical and discursive approach. Building on key theories on the links between information and decision-making, it explores the logic behind the potential for empowerment through providing information. Empirical examples are used to demonstrate some elements of the theoretical propositions.

Findings

The chapter demonstrates that there is a strong theoretical potential for enhancing employee participation through the provision of more and better information. It also suggests that organisations would benefit economically from this, because of a broader knowledge-base underlying business decisions. However, in many organisations the potential is either not recognised, or, for organisational design and cultural reasons, it is considered undesirable to increase employee participation.

Practical Implications

Organisations and employees need to increase their efforts in understanding how they can use IT to provide decision-makers, and in particular employees, with better information.

Social Implications

There is huge potential for social innovation through IS and IT that is currently under-exploited. Because people are exposed to IT in their daily lives so much, they are more likely to want to push for better use of IT and access to information in their organisations.

Originality/Value

This chapter provides an unusual angle on social innovation. Drawing on some key theoretical frameworks from the IS domain, it demonstrates a strong link between enhancing information provision and increasing employee participation.

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Purpose

Giving guidance to organisations by exploring the role of employees in innovating for new sustainable business.

Design/Methodology/Approach

This chapter builds upon two methods. Based on a literature study, with a focus on the work of Jan Kees Looise on social innovation, the main principles for the role of employees in next level innovation cycles are explored. Second, these principles are illustrated and refined in a case example.

Findings

New sustainable business can be stimulated by a combination of principles that strengthen the purpose, autonomy and mastery of employees.

Research Limitations/Implications

The case is stemming from a high-tech sector. Future research should explore whether the principles can be applied to other sectors.

Practical Implications

Managers have a big influence on the innovative potential of an organisation. This influence can obstruct or stimulate next practice innovation platforms. The principles that are highlighted in this chapter give guidance to managers how they can create an enabling environment for innovation.

Social Implications

A main point in the innovation approach described in this chapter is based on giving freedom to employees. This triggers an external focus to really understand the developments in society and how an organisation can improve their added value by acting upon this.

Originality/Value

The combination of innovation, customer value and sustainability is a rather new area in both literature and management practice.

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Purpose

The purpose of this chapter is to draw attention to employability being an important social innovation that potentially thrives with transformational leadership, partly depending on certain personal characteristics such as managerial role and personality.

Methodology/Approach

The study was carried out among pairs of employees (314) and immediate supervisors (334) working at a large Dutch company that produces building materials. We made use of Linear Regression and Structural Equation Modeling to test our hypothesis and explore our assumptions with regard to the research model.

Findings

We have found that transformational leadership is positively related to employee and supervisor ratings of employability. Furthermore, there is some indication that transformational leadership enhances employability in some situations, demonstrating differences between categories of workers with and without a managerial function. Moreover, it appeared that after controlling for personality, only the positive relationship between transformational leadership and supervisor ratings of employability, remained for the workers not having a managerial function.

Research Limitations/Implications

Our study design comprised a cross-sectional approach and therefore future longitudinal research is necessary to investigate causal relationships between transformational leadership, personality, and employability.

Practical Implications

In terms of individual career development practices, our outcomes should be translated into increased attention for aligning leadership style to meet the requirements of all types of employees across the life-span.

Social Implications

By providing more insight into the increased importance of transformational leadership for certain groups of workers, this contribution is intended to come up with opportunities for increasing the employability for different types of workers.

Originality/Value

This chapter draws attention to the fact that transformational leadership can be a useful tool for stimulating employability of workers. Worker characteristics such as personality, work role (e.g., managerial role) and other life-span factors always have to be taken into account for a customized approach, given the uniqueness of each and every employee.

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Purpose

The goal of this study was to empirically determine whether creative capital can be distinguished at the firm level and to determine what role external labour plays in enhancing firm-level creative capital.

Methodology/approach

This study was conducted using a qualitative design. Interviews were held with eight managers knowledgeable on HR implementation and the use of creativity within their firms.

Findings

Creative capital was identified on the organizational level. The use made and roles given to external labour, in the form of contract and project-based employees as well as consultants and specialists for core activities, are important aspects in enhancing firm-level creative capital. We also found support for the claim that the use of labour market intermediaries in involving external labour differs between organizations with low and high levels of creative capital. Further, the findings indicate that more use is made of external labour in highly creative capital organizations when they are operating in dynamic environments.

Research limitations/implications

Given out sample limitations, future research should develop a study design that allows our findings to be generalized to a larger population, including a focus on specific distinguishing departments within organizations.

Practical implications

Organizations can enhance their innovation performance through using firm-level creative capital, using external labour to acquire and retain the KSAOs needed.

Originality/value

The study is highly original and adds value to existing theory as it is the first to explore the relationship between external labour and firm-level creative capital.

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Purpose

The social innovation of devolving HRM responsibilities to line managers results in many debates about how well they implement HRM practices. The implementation constraints line managers perceive in their HRM role are researched by taking organisational contingencies into consideration.

Design/Methodology/Approach

We present four case studies in which our findings are based on quantitative and qualitative data from the cases. The qualitative data allow us to explain some of our quantitative results in terms of organisational differences.

Findings

The HRM implementation effectiveness as perceived by line managers depends on the line managers’ span of control, his/her education level and experience and his/her hierarchical position in the organisation. Each HRM implementation constraint knows additional organisational contingencies.

Research Limitations/Implications

We did not consider possible influences of one organisational characteristic on another, and the effect of this combined effect on the HRM implementation factors. In order to overcome this limitation, we would suggest using a structural equation model (SEM) in future research.

Practical Implications

This chapter offers HR professionals solutions on how to structure the organisation and design the HRM role of line managers in order to implement HRM practices effectively.

Social Implications

We see many differences on how HRM implementation is managed in organisations. This chapter offers solutions to policy makers on how to equalise the HRM role of line managers.

Originality/Value

The focus of this chapter is on the line manager (instead of HR managers) as implementer of HRM and the impact of organisational contingencies on HRM implementation.

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Purpose

The purpose of this conceptual study is to explain the way in which employees influence social innovation in the employee–organization relationship, such as job crafting, i-deals, New World of Work, talent management, or high performance work practices.

Methodology/Approach

This study applies a practice perspective in order to explain how employees affect their employee–organization relationship and thus influence the outcomes of social innovation.

Implications

The theoretical exploration suggest that employees can engage in the enactment of the employee–organization relationship in three ways: enacting employment relationships, enacting employment practices, and enacting employment practices’ outcomes. In doing so, they can draw on interpretive schemes, resources, and norms for realizing the benefits of social innovation for themselves and/or their employer.

Originality/Value

Although organizations have started social innovation initiatives that allow employees to actively shape the employee–organization relationship, existing studies still treat employees as inactive recipients in the relationship with their employer. As a result, it remains unclear how social innovation in employee–organization relationships is implemented in practice and thus, how social innovation provides benefits to the employee and the organization. The originality of this study is its focus on how employees, as (pro-)active constituents, shape the employee–organization relationship, for finding better explanations of the outcomes of social innovation initiatives.

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Purpose

Talent is a critical factor for organizational success. Multinational corporations (MNCs) face the challenge of fierce competition for talent worldwide by increasing their efforts in global talent management (GTM). To improve the strategic alignment of GTM, organizations increasingly incorporate information and communication technology (ICT) applications to support their GTM system. However, not every organization is successful at applying these new opportunities (e-GTM) and aligning them successfully with their organizational strategy. This chapter aims at conceptualizing the relationship between strategic GTM and strategic ICT in an aligned effort. It presents a conceptual framework that identifies four types of MNC approaches to e-GTM.

Design/Methodology/Approach

By means of a review of, both the GTM literature as well as the ICT literature, we connect the two concepts, GTM and ICT into e-GTM, into a framework along two axes: the extent to which MNCs apply GTM (ad hoc vs. strategic) and the scope of ICT in MNCs (operational vs. strategic).

Findings

Although the framework identifies four approaches to e-GTM in MNCs, the framework is less black and white than as presented. Companies can display e-GTM characteristics which place them in the gray areas in between each of the profiles. Additionally, we assume that achieving the alignment of strategic GTM and strategic ICT is an iterative process.

Research Limitations/Implications

Since strategic alignment is not static but continuously changing, it requires companies to reevaluate their current GTM practices and ICT applications constantly while scanning the external market for new developments in the field of GTM and ICT to ensure the innovative state of their system. Furthermore, we assume that MNCs from high-tech sectors are more successful in supporting their strategic GTM applications with suitable ICT applications than MNCs from low-tech sectors. The study presents a first step toward researching the relationship between strategic GTM and strategic ICT in MNCs. The proposed framework might be used as a foundation for further research studies.

Practical Implications

The framework presented in this chapter can help MNCs to address the issue of connecting GTM and ICT.

Originality/Value

The relationship between GTM and ICT have not been conceptualized before. Furthermore, the typology presented in this chapter, with four approaches to ICT-enabled GTM, is a new way of looking at the GTM–ICT relationship.

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Purpose

The goal of this chapter is to explore the requirements modern companies expect of HR professionals’ competences.

Design/Methodology/Approach

Departing from the widely acknowledged HR competence studies of Ulrich and associates, we extended them with the continuous learning competence profile and HR professionals’ individual job performance. The empirical study is built on open interviews with HR leaders of ten large Dutch companies.

Findings

The study offers a new set of HRM competences. This set includes six HRM profiles: Business Focus, Learning Focus, Strategic Focus, HR Technology, HR Delivery, and Personal Credibility. Several contingency factors are thought to play a role in supporting these HRM competences: company culture, strategy, size, sector, scope, and position of HR professionals.

Practical Implications

Based on these contributions, we recommended conducting a quantitative study to gain understanding of the relevance of the individual HRM job performance and to find associations between the HRM competences and the individual HRM job performance.

Originality/Value

The focus of this chapter is a combination of HRM competences and the individual job performance of HR professionals.

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DOI
10.1108/S1877-6361201414
Publication date
2014-08-14
Book series
Advanced Series in Management
Editors
Series copyright holder
Emerald Publishing Limited
ISBN
978-1-78441-130-5
Book series ISSN
1877-6361