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Employee Relations, vol. 35 no. 3
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0142-5455

Article
Publication date: 1 January 1988

Sarah Vickerstaff and John Sheldrake

The research traces the development of industrial training in industry and changes in the state's role from 1900 to the early 1980s.

Abstract

The research traces the development of industrial training in industry and changes in the state's role from 1900 to the early 1980s.

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Management Research News, vol. 11 no. 1/2
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0140-9174

Keywords

Article
Publication date: 1 August 1992

Sarah Vickerstaff

Training and management development in the smaller‐firm sector isan often‐neglected area. Presents the findings and main conclusions fromresearch conducted at Canterbury Business…

365

Abstract

Training and management development in the smaller‐firm sector is an often‐neglected area. Presents the findings and main conclusions from research conducted at Canterbury Business School through in‐depth case studies and postal questionnaires among 200 small firms in Kent.

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Management Development Review, vol. 5 no. 4
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0962-2519

Keywords

Article
Publication date: 1 July 1994

Sarah Vickerstaff and Pat Ainley

In this paper the development of the contract State and the unfolding of its many contradictions is assessed by the detailed consideration of education and training policy. Policy…

Abstract

In this paper the development of the contract State and the unfolding of its many contradictions is assessed by the detailed consideration of education and training policy. Policy in these areas provide good case studies of the contract State for the following reasons. In Western Europe the link between education, training and economic performance have been hypothesised as crucial in an increasingly competitive and quality conscious world market place. Equally, education and training policies have implications for social and cultural development and therefore have a further ‘public good’ element. The public visibility of these issues and their significance for economic and social wellbeing makes it difficult for governments to deny some responsibility for ensuring the ‘system’ works effectively. In a comparison of different European approaches to these problems recent past British governments appear to be more resolutely free market than their neighbours, however, closer examination of policy suggests the development of new forms of state involvement through the contracting or franchising principle.

Details

Management Research News, vol. 17 no. 7/8/9
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0140-9174

Article
Publication date: 20 April 2013

Eleanor Davies and Andrew Jenkins

The purpose of this paper is to examine the significance of the work‐to‐retirement transition for academic staff from a life course perspective and the manner in which individuals…

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Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to examine the significance of the work‐to‐retirement transition for academic staff from a life course perspective and the manner in which individuals have managed the transition.

Design/methodology/approach

In total, 32 semi‐structured interviews were conducted with academic staff from ten Universities in England. The data are analysed using matrix analysis.

Findings

Marked differences in the experience of the work‐to‐retirement transition were found and five groups are identified which characterise the significance of retirement. Clean Breakers view retirement as a welcome release from work. Opportunists and Continuing Scholars use retirement to re‐negotiate the employment relationship. The Reluctant consider retirement as a loss of a valued source of identity and the Avoiders are undecided about retirement plans.

Research limitations/implications

The focus of the study is at the individual level. A more complete understanding of retirement decisions would encompass organisational approaches to retirement issues.

Practical implications

There are practical implications for academics approaching retirement. Not all academics wish to continue to engage in academic work in retirement. For those who do, opportunities are predominantly available to staff with stronger social and professional capital. Continued engagement necessitates personal adaptability and tolerance to ambiguity. Staff who are planning their careers might build such factors into retirement planning.

Social implications

Organisations need to rethink their responsibilities in managing retirement processes as they face an increasing variety of retirement expectations in the workforce. Given the unfolding de‐institutionalisation of retirement, both individuals and organisations need to re‐negotiate their respective roles.

Originality/value

The paper characterises the diversity of modes of experiencing retirement by academic staff, highlighting differences between the groups.

Details

Employee Relations, vol. 35 no. 3
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0142-5455

Keywords

Article
Publication date: 20 April 2013

Sophie Hennekam and Olivier Herrbach

The purpose of this paper is to examine the role of perceived human resource management (HRM) practices on affective organizational commitment, job performance and preference for…

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Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to examine the role of perceived human resource management (HRM) practices on affective organizational commitment, job performance and preference for early retirement.

Design/methodology/approach

In total, 414 older employees with a low occupational status, in the graphical, arts, information and media sectors in the Netherlands, filled out a survey measuring their perception of five human resource practices related to flexible work options, job design, training, evaluation of their performance and recognition and respect, their commitment, job performance and preference for early retirement.

Findings

The results show that employees’ perception of HRM practices related to job design and recognition and respect have a positive influence on their affective commitment to their organization. Second, their perception of the HRM practices related to recognition and respect are also shown to have a positive relationship with job performance. However, it was found that perceived HRM practices do not influence preference for early retirement.

Originality/value

These findings show that the provision of HRM practices enhances job performance and affective organizational commitment. However, in contrast with the common assumption that HRM practices will influence the retirement decision in the sense that it will delay their retirement, it might not be a useful tool to keep older employees longer in the workforce.

Article
Publication date: 20 April 2013

Dianne Bown‐Wilson and Emma Parry

The purpose of this paper is to explore what drives UK managers aged over 50 to continue progressing in their careers rather than retiring, and their perceptions of career…

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Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to explore what drives UK managers aged over 50 to continue progressing in their careers rather than retiring, and their perceptions of career progression at a time in life when opportunities for further promotion may have ceased. It examines subjectively significant personal and organizational influences on career progression and the extent to which older managers perceive that motivation for career progression changes over the career.

Design/methodology/approach

The research adopts a qualitative, inductive approach, comprising semi‐structured interviews with 27 male and 13 female managers, aged 50 and over, from two large, UK financial services organizations.

Findings

The findings show that motivation for career progression in managers aged over 50 is driven by individually diverse patterns of career drivers, personal and work‐related influences, and attitudes towards career opportunities. These can be classified into four different orientations towards future career progression, pre‐ and post‐retirement.

Originality/value

The study contributes to knowledge about subjective psychological mobility in late managerial careers and the balance which individuals maintain between organizational and personal aspects of their career. It demonstrates that motivational drivers of career progression are perceived to change over the career and that perceptions of what constitutes career progression are linked to an individual's past, current and predicted future career experiences, in some cases extending past the traditional retirement transition.

Details

Employee Relations, vol. 35 no. 3
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0142-5455

Keywords

Article
Publication date: 20 April 2013

Vanessa Beck

The purpose of this paper is to explore the degree to which there have been changes during the recession in the behaviour of employers with regards to their employment of older…

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Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to explore the degree to which there have been changes during the recession in the behaviour of employers with regards to their employment of older workers. The paper aims to show that there has been substantial change since the last recession and that there are, potentially, significant developments still occurring.

Design/methodology/approach

A small group of employers from a range of sectors were interviewed twice, once at the outset of the (first) recession and once towards its end.

Findings

The situation for older workers in employment is better than in previous recessions, mainly because employers are less likely to resort to redundancies for workers of all ages. Instead, a range of flexible working options are being utilised, including flexible retirement and adjustments to work processes. In the main the flexibility was instituted and controlled by the organisations. Employers are looking for alternative strategies to deal with a shift in control over the retirement process as a result of the abolishment of the default retirement age.

Research limitations/implications

The research was undertaken with a small sample, which has implications for the generalizability of the results. Although it would be difficult to further investigate the developments of employer behaviour during the recession, the long‐term implications and the effects of the recession, in particular on older workers, are yet to emerge.

Originality/value

The paper shows a new development in dealing with older workers during a recession.

Details

Employee Relations, vol. 35 no. 3
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0142-5455

Keywords

Article
Publication date: 20 April 2013

Jo Grady

The purpose of this paper is to draw upon empirical research in order to demonstrate the ways in which trade unions have responded to the so‐called current UK pension crisis.

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Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to draw upon empirical research in order to demonstrate the ways in which trade unions have responded to the so‐called current UK pension crisis.

Design/methodology/approach

The paper uses both theoretical approaches to neoliberalism, and empirical research in the form of interviews, to examine the contradictions between the rhetoric and reality of government policy towards, and trade union responses to, pension reform in the UK.

Findings

That trade unions have been constrained by: the fact that the labour party, which they support, has been in government but has increasingly become receptive to neoliberal economic policies; and by the broader discourse of pension reform, advanced by elites that are committed to neoliberal reforms to the British welfare state.

Research limitations/implications

The scope of the paper is large and thus certain issues regarding the pension crisis and ideology are not covered in as much detail as would be preferred.

Practical implications

The paper offers forward a unique critique regarding the current favoured pension policies and solutions.

Originality/value

This paper draws upon front‐line theoretical contributions and combines them with the author's interviews with leading trade union general secretaries. As such, it is a unique insight into not only the current so‐called “pensions crisis” but also the responses of trade unions, and the labour movement more broadly, to this constructed dilemma.

Details

Employee Relations, vol. 35 no. 3
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0142-5455

Keywords

Article
Publication date: 20 April 2013

Vanesa Fuertes, Valerie Egdell and Ronald McQuaid

The purpose of this paper is to present a study of age management in small and medium‐sized enterprises (SMEs) in the UK.

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Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to present a study of age management in small and medium‐sized enterprises (SMEs) in the UK.

Design/methodology/approach

Qualitative data collection and exploratory research with six SMEs comprising of: initial interviews with representatives from the SMEs; action research activities designed to raise awareness of age management issues and age discrimination legislation; and follow‐up interviews to ascertain if awareness raising activities resulted in any changes, or planned changes, in policy, practice and attitudes towards older workers.

Findings

Good practice in age management can be found in SMEs, but was not found to be part of a systematic strategy. Negative practices and attitudes towards older workers are observed, with positive and negative age stereotypes coexisting. Negative stereotypes displayed can undermine the perceived economic value of older workers. There may be a gap between policy and practice, but awareness raising campaigns that reach employers can influence existing ways of working by showing the benefits of an age diverse workforce and helping reduce prejudices against older workers.

Research limitations/implications

The sample size is small and context specific. However, the study usefully illustrates different approaches to age management policies and practices in SMEs, and the potential benefits of age management awareness in influencing attitudes and practices towards older workers in SMEs.

Originality/value

The experience of age management in SMEs is under researched and examples of good practice in age management are often drawn from large organisations. The paper highlights that SMEs often lack the resources to seek advice regarding age management; therefore, those responsible for age management awareness raising activities may need to approach businesses directly.

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