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Fragments of HRM in hospitality? Evidence from the 1998 workplace employee relations survey

Lucas, Rosemary E. (2002) Fragments of HRM in hospitality? Evidence from the 1998 workplace employee relations survey. International journal of contemporary hospitality management, 14 (5). pp. 207-212. ISSN 1757-1049

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Abstract

Using management and employee data from the 1998 workplace employee relations survey, this article attempts to trace "fragments of HRM" within the hospitality industry (HI) on a comparative basis with all industries and services (AIS) in Great Britain. Four themes are explored: how the management of HRM is organised and practised, "individualism" and "collectivism", participation and involvement, and other "sophisticated" HR practices. The impact of HRM on employees is assessed. HRM in the HI is found to be very different, thus providing an extreme example of the "retaining control/cost control" approach to management, and a graphic illustration of very "hard" HRM in practice. While HI employees are much more content with their lot than their counterparts in AIS who are subject to rather more "favourable" HRM policies and practices, other indicators imply that there is also dissatisfaction. Qualitative research is necessary to understand whether employees really do enjoy being "kicked hard". Management might reap greater benefits by adopting more developmental, "soft" HRM practices.

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