Title: Levels of e-HRM adoption in subsidiaries of a US multinational corporation: the mediating role of power, politics and institutions

Authors: Ralf Burbach; Tony Royle

Addresses: School of Hospitality Management and Tourism, Dublin Institute of Technology, Cathal Brugha Street, Dublin 1, Ireland ' JE Cairnes School of Business and Economics, NUI Galway, University Road, Galway, Ireland

Abstract: Despite the purported advantages of electronic HRM (e-HRM) in assisting strategic decision making, few organisations appear to fully capitalise on e-HRM. This article explores the mediating role of power and politics on the levels of e-HRM utilisation in the German and Irish subsidiaries of a US multinational corporation (MNC). The research comprised 25 in-depth interviews with 15 key stakeholders in the case study firm. Key findings highlight that e-HRM adaptation in MNC subsidiaries is affected by the institutional contexts within which the organisation operates, as well as a set of micro-political and power relationships within the broader political structure of the MNC and as such are capable of curbing a multinational's capacity to disseminate human resource including e-HRM practices from the country of origin to its subsidiaries. In particular, resource power derived from strategic capabilities may be employed by subsidiary actors to shape the manner in which e-HRM is utilised.

Keywords: multinational corporations; MNCs; USA; United States; Germany; Ireland; e-HRM; power; politics; micro-political relationships; international management; MNC subsidiaries; mediating roles; electronic HRM; human resource management; strategic decision making.

DOI: 10.1504/EJIM.2013.055281

European Journal of International Management, 2013 Vol.7 No.4, pp.432 - 449

Published online: 24 Jul 2013 *

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