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Publication date: 27 June 2018

Nemanja Berber and Bojan Lekovic

The purpose of this paper is to research the impact of one of HRM activities, employees’ development, on the level of organizational innovative performances. HR development…




The purpose of this paper is to research the impact of one of HRM activities, employees’ development, on the level of organizational innovative performances. HR development techniques that organizations use in order to develop employee’s knowledge, skills and abilities and their impact on the perceived level of organizational innovativeness was set in the focus of research, with the intent of determining which development techniques influence organizational innovative performance.


The research is based on the data from CRANET project, which has been largely used in exploring the relation between HRM activities and other variables of organizational behavior and performances. Data for this study were collected from a sample of 1,384 organizations from 8 CEE countries (Croatia, Estonia, Hungary, Latvia, Lithuania, Slovakia, Slovenia and Serbia) for the period 2015–2016. The correlation was used to explore the relations between variables. Ordinal logistic regression was used in order to explore the relations between the employees’ development techniques, training importance and training effectiveness and the level of organizational innovativeness.


The regression model showed that there are a statistically significant relations between the effectiveness of training expressed by systematic evaluation of training practice, and the methods of employees’ training (use of projects to stimulate learning, on-the-job training, development centers, use of international work assignments and mentoring) with the level of innovation. The importance of training practice expressed by the ratio of the annual training budget in the total payroll costs did not show statistically significant relations with the level of innovation. Also, systematic estimation of the need for training of personnel has not shown statistically significant relations with the innovation rate of the organization.

Research limitations/implications

The data are derived from single source respondents, and response rates between countries do vary. At the country level, every effort is made to represent the structure of the economy in the country and at the point in which the data are being collected.

Practical implications

Training and international working assignments have a direct positive relation with the level of organizational performances, while teamwork and coaching and mentoring have not shown the same. Organizations and their HR managers should pay special attention to planning and implementation of HR development programs – coaching, mentoring and teamwork – in order to create space for organizational innovation enhancement.


Previous literature seeking to clarify the role of HRM and fostering organizational innovation has made its evident contribution based on theoretical papers. In order to improve the current situation in which empirical evidence is very rare, research on the significance of the employee development program and its impact on the organizational innovative performances is based on quantitative indicators of the conducted research. The relation of HRM and innovative performances in the CEE region was studied in only a few studies. In the previous period, this region has often been omitted in the field of HRM research. Therefore, an additional novelty can be derived from a research sample compiled from the CEE region countries in the conducted research.


Employee Relations, vol. 40 no. 5
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0142-5455


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