best fit hrm
Topics: Management, Human resource management / Pages: 3 (621 words) / Published: Apr 30th, 2014

Discuss the proposition that the reality of business and HR Strategy means the best practice is impossible to achieve

"Strategic HRM is an approach that defines how the organisation 's goals will be achieved through people by means of HR strategies and integrated HR policies and practices" (Armstrong, 2009). The overall aim of strategic HRM is to maximise the firms’ performance by making sure all employees are of high calibre and committed to achieving the organisations competitive advantage.
Within HRM it is not clear how to best link strategic HRM to the organisations strategy. The main argument involves two different approaches; best fit and best practice. The best fit strategy involves organisations tailoring their HR strategies around the organisations strategies and needs. Whereas the latter suggests that organisations will be more successful if they adopt best practices within the work place (Boxall and Purcell, 2008).
‘Best practice’, a form of universalism, is based around the theory that high commitment will reflect the organisations high performance level regardless of the firm’s competitive strategy (Torrington et al, 2011). This is demonstrated in Guest’s model (1989) Theory of HRM. The model is built around four main HR goals; commitment, flexibility, quality and strategic integration, the theory being if all goals are achieved then the organisation’s performance will be enhanced. Pfeffer (1998), also a supporter, progresses the said theory by claiming policies such as; high spending on training, high wages directly linked to performance will determine a high level of commitment and performance.
Another criticism of best practice theory is that it is difficult to accept that there is an overall best practice for every organisation . One practice may have been successful and effective for an organisation does not mean that it will work for every organisation (Armstrong, 2006). This factor helps show that when analysing business and hr within



References: Armstrong (2009) Armstrong’s Handook of Human Resource Management Practice London: Koogan Boxall, P & Purcell, J (2011) Strategy and Human Resource Management 3rd Edition Hampshire: Palgrave MacMillan Becker, B E and Gerhart, S (1996) The Impact of Human Resource Management on Organisational Performance: Progress and Prospects Academy of Management Journal 39 (4), Page 779-801 Hall, L, Taylor L. & Torrington, D. (2008) Human Resource Management 7th Edition London: Prentice Hall

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