HRM Implementation by Multiple HRM Actors: A Social Exchange Perspective

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    In this study, we understand HRM implementation as a social process that depends on the social exchange relationships between line managers and both HR professionals and employees. As such, we offer a fresh approach to understanding HRM implementation by concentrating on the social exchange among HRM actors. We do so by investigating to what extent these exchange relationships influence HRM implementation, as reflected in employees’ perceptions of the presence of HRM practices and their affective commitment. We collected multilevel data from two sources (line managers and employees) and in two phases in a Dutch engineering firm, and obtained fully matched manager – employee information from 75 employees and 20 line managers. Our results show that employees perceive a larger number of HRM practices when they have a good relationship with their line managers and when their line managers are motivated to implement HRM practices. Line managers, in turn, reciprocate perceived support from the HR department with greater motivation to implement these practices. We conclude that because HRM actors engage in social interactions, HRM practices will be implemented at the organizational level because employees perceive the presence of HRM practices and then reciprocate this with affective commitment.
    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)3068-3092
    Number of pages41
    JournalInternational journal of human resource management
    Issue number22
    Publication statusE-pub ahead of print/First online - 4 Mar 2018


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