Bleak house or bright prospect?: HRM in Australian SMEs over 1998-2008

Wiesner, Retha and Innes, Peter (2010) Bleak house or bright prospect?: HRM in Australian SMEs over 1998-2008. Asia Pacific Journal of Human Resources, 48 (2). pp. 151-184. ISSN 1038-4111

Abstract

The aim of this paper is to determine whether Australian small and medium enterprises (SMEs) could be described as 'bleak houses' or whether they have developed over the last decade into 'bright prospects' typified by human resource innovations. This study builds on empirical work (n = 1425) from ten years ago (1998), and re-examines the prospects of SMEs through the lens of human resource management (HRM) practices. Uniquely, the 2008 cross-sectional data provides for the large-scale tracking of strategic HRM practices. Specifically, 110 HRM practices over five traditional areas across 1230 SMEs are analysed. The prevalence, change, and patterning of HRM practices used by Australian SMEs in 2008 are investigated. It was found that SMEs need less of a make-over in relation to the adoption of HR practices, compared to a decade ago. From a practitioner viewpoint, the study provides cross-sectional benchmarking against the previous time-point, 1998, as well as extending that work with an examination of a more extensive range of new and emerging HRM practices.


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Item Type: Article (Commonwealth Reporting Category C)
Refereed: Yes
Item Status: Live Archive
Additional Information: Contact Dr Retha Wiesner at wiesner@usq.edu.au for any queries.
Depositing User: Assoc Prof Retha Wiesner
Faculty / Department / School: Historic - Faculty of Business - School of Management and Marketing
Date Deposited: 25 Oct 2010 12:20
Last Modified: 03 Jul 2013 00:04
Uncontrolled Keywords: Australia; human resource management; HRM; SMEs; small business
Fields of Research (FOR2008): 15 Commerce, Management, Tourism and Services > 1503 Business and Management > 150303 Corporate Governance and Stakeholder Engagement
17 Psychology and Cognitive Sciences > 1701 Psychology > 170107 Industrial and Organisational Psychology
15 Commerce, Management, Tourism and Services > 1503 Business and Management > 150305 Human Resources Management
Socio-Economic Objective (SEO2008): E Expanding Knowledge > 97 Expanding Knowledge > 970115 Expanding Knowledge in Commerce, Management, Tourism and Services
Identification Number or DOI: doi: 10.1177/1038411110368465
URI: http://eprints.usq.edu.au/id/eprint/8858

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