Armstrong (2008), has identified three propositions as underpinning the basis of Strategic Human Resource Management (‘SHRM’ from hereon after). Firstly, human resource also known as human capital is a vital element for competitive advantage. Secondly, vertical alignment is required. This involves the alignment of human resource strategy with business strategy. Lastly, horizontal alignment needs to be adapted. This encompasses the individual HR strategies and practices being mutually supported (Armstrong, 2008).
According to Armstrong (2008), the aim of SHRM is ‘to engender strategic capability by making sure that the organisation has the skilled, engaged and well-motivated employees it needs to achieve sustained competitive advantage.’ He also contends that when considering the aims of SHRM it is essential to consider all of the stakeholders of the organisation such as the owners, managers, employees and the wider community (Armstrong, 2008). In addition, it is also important to get a good balance between Instrumental and Humanistic HRM, also known as ‘Hard’ and ‘Soft’ HRM. Hard HRM stresses the rational, quantitative aspects of managing human resources whilst Soft HRM recognises the need for an integration of HR policies and practices with the organisation’s strategic objectives but places emphasis on employee development, collaboration, participation and trust. Organisations are usually seen emphasising on Hard HRM and forgoing Soft HRM (Boxall & Purcell, 2008).... [continues]
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