Authors: Maura Sheehan
Addresses: Brighton Business School, University of Brighton, Brighton, BN2 4AT, UK
Abstract: This paper examines the process of delivery of HR practices within Multinational Companies (MNCs). Neo-institutional, resource-based and agency theories are used to explore whether devolvement of HR to line managers is attempted in MNCs. Issues of agency between HR specialists and line managers are found to be a significant barrier to devolving HR within the sample organisations. A higher level of divergence in perception about the delivery and resourcing of devolvement is found to be negatively correlated with perceived subsidiary performance. The analysis is based on a multi-respondent and a multi-unit method which enables comparisons between HR specialists and line managers (over 700 respondents) and comparisons between the domestic and foreign subsidiaries (over 140 organisations and 429 units). The interaction of institutional resource-based and agency factors is extremely complex and requires further investigation.
Keywords: HRD devolvement; human resource management; perceived subsidiary performance; multi-respondent analysis; MNCs; multinational corporations; Europe; neo-institutional theory; resource-based view; RBV; agency theory; line managers; foreign subsidiaries; domestic subsidiaries.
European Journal of International Management, 2012 Vol.6 No.1, pp.101 - 127
Published online: 03 Jan 2012 *Full-text access for editors Access for subscribers Purchase this article Comment on this article