Strategic Human Resource Management

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Date Submitted: 06/07/2013 11:49 AM

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Strategic Human Resource Management |

A case study of engineering firms in New Zealand |

Table of Contents

Introduction 1

Background 2

Engineering Consultancies: Knowledge-based firms 2

Impact of HR practices in knowledge-based firms 3

My personal interest in the topic 4

Research Aim 4

Research Methodology 5

Epistemological and Ontological Stances 5

Multiple Case Study Design 5

Research Design 6

Site Selection 6

Data Collection 7

Data Analysis 7

Further Discussion and Analysis 8

Limitations and Future Research 9

Works Cited 10


Quinn (1992) states that, "The capacity to manage human intellect – and to transform intellectual output into a service or a group of services embodied in a product – is fast becoming the critical executive skill of this era." He goes on to suggest that any executive trying to deal with the reality of knowledge management is faced with a daunting task as very few are equipped to deal with it. Scott Adams sums up the situation quite aptly, in his Dilbert cartoon, where the pointy-haired boss states that the success of his company will be derived from “redesigning processes to enable enterprise integration of knowledge, resources and tools.” and Wally, like most executives today, responds by saying, “Is it okay if I do nothing?”. While merely a caricature of the current situation, it does depict the reality that most executives are doing naught when it comes to the strategic management of their resources.

In the last decade, globalisation has changed the way organisations function. It has brought with it increased competition and a continuous shift from a production-based to a service-based work culture (Townsend et al., 1998). It has led to the establishment of a ‘knowledge-based economy’, a term that was popularised by Peter Drucker [ (Drucker, 1969) ], who classified manual workers as those who would work with their hands to produce goods/services and knowledge worker as those who...