Localising versus standardising electronic human resource management: complexities and tensions between HRM and IT departments

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Abstract

In this paper, we provide an analysis of the complexities involved during global e-HRM (Electronic Human Resource Management) implementation. We present findings from a case study on the challenge of global integration versus local responsiveness of e-HRM systems. We take a local site lens, analysing the experiences of a local IT department in charge of implementing a global e-HRM strategy. Although this implementation was hailed as a success by the organisation, there were many unexpected and negative outcomes at the local level. These appeared to arise from a non-participative approach by global IT, with inadequate consideration of changes in the role, relationships and relative power of the local IT and HR teams. We suggest that desired corporate IT outcomes should not be forced on the local units at the expense of flexibility in equally important local HR initiatives. However, balancing the requirements of HR flexibility and system standardisation in a large-size, multinational firm is non-trivial.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)413-431
JournalEuropean journal of international management
Volume7
Issue number4
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2013

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human resource management
electronics
flexibility
human resource management system
firm
Human resource management
experience

Keywords

  • IR-86864
  • METIS-297106

Cite this

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title = "Localising versus standardising electronic human resource management: complexities and tensions between HRM and IT departments",
abstract = "In this paper, we provide an analysis of the complexities involved during global e-HRM (Electronic Human Resource Management) implementation. We present findings from a case study on the challenge of global integration versus local responsiveness of e-HRM systems. We take a local site lens, analysing the experiences of a local IT department in charge of implementing a global e-HRM strategy. Although this implementation was hailed as a success by the organisation, there were many unexpected and negative outcomes at the local level. These appeared to arise from a non-participative approach by global IT, with inadequate consideration of changes in the role, relationships and relative power of the local IT and HR teams. We suggest that desired corporate IT outcomes should not be forced on the local units at the expense of flexibility in equally important local HR initiatives. However, balancing the requirements of HR flexibility and system standardisation in a large-size, multinational firm is non-trivial.",
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AB - In this paper, we provide an analysis of the complexities involved during global e-HRM (Electronic Human Resource Management) implementation. We present findings from a case study on the challenge of global integration versus local responsiveness of e-HRM systems. We take a local site lens, analysing the experiences of a local IT department in charge of implementing a global e-HRM strategy. Although this implementation was hailed as a success by the organisation, there were many unexpected and negative outcomes at the local level. These appeared to arise from a non-participative approach by global IT, with inadequate consideration of changes in the role, relationships and relative power of the local IT and HR teams. We suggest that desired corporate IT outcomes should not be forced on the local units at the expense of flexibility in equally important local HR initiatives. However, balancing the requirements of HR flexibility and system standardisation in a large-size, multinational firm is non-trivial.

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