Human Resource Management, 5e

Managing Employees for Competitive Advantage

by Gowan, DeMarr, David

ISBN: 978-1-948426-45-9 | Copyright 2023

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Faculty and organizational consultants have noted that the framework in this book is right on target with what students need to learn, regardless of major, and what clients need, regardless of organization. Based on feedback from students, the goal of providing a readable and engaging textbook has been met. This edition continues the focus of earlier editions on providing a strategic framework for managers that is applicable across large and small organizations, regardless of industry or for profit or nonprofit status. The overarching goal is to provide the information and context that any manager needs to know to effectively identify and empower the right talent to move the organization forward. To do so, the focus of the book is built from the following three points:

• Managing Employees Rather than Managing the HR Function. Students often have difficulty separating the concept of employees as human resources from a discussion of the human resources (HR) department of an organization. Our unique framework, woven throughout the book, places equal emphasis on the principles of employee management practices and the application of those practices in different organizational and environmental contexts. These are contexts in which all managers must make daily decisions that affect firm performance, how work is structured, and the terms and conditions of employment. The goal is for those using this book to understand both the theory behind effective employee management practices and the reality that managing employees under different scenarios presents unique challenges and requires different responses. Our managerial perspective, as opposed to an HR perspective, makes the book accessible to all students interested in learning about managing employees, while still being applicable for future HR professionals.

• Managing Employees in Context. A second point of differentiation for this book is how we place management of employees directly in the broader context of organizations and their external environments. We devote a significant amount of coverage to the role of employee management in supporting business strategy, company characteristics, organizational culture, and employee concerns. We also address the external pressures that come from globalization, technology, labor force trends, ethics, regulatory issues, and related topics. The importance of context is highlighted in the overarching framework for the book and incorporated into every chapter. Each chapter discusses contextual pressures on the use of various tools for managing employees and focuses on how contextual pressures influence the effectiveness of these practices. Most current textbooks present this information primarily in the early chapters.

• Integrative Framework. A third point of differentiation is the book’s overarching framework. Students learn better when they have a clear framework for understanding how different practices are used independently and interdependently. In this case, they will learn about issues related to individual employee management and the larger work group, as well as how to address this independence and interdependence relative to different internal and external contingencies. We highlight three primary activities for managing employees and show their interrelationships: work design and workforce planning, management of employee competencies, and management of employee attitudes and behaviors. We approach these themes from the context of understanding how employee management affects the ability of an organization to achieve its objectives and attain a sustainable competitive advantage. We have developed a matrix that outlines the topics covered for each employee management role relative to the organizational demands and environmental influencers to aid students in understanding the many interrelationships that exist in managing employees.

This book will help current and future managers understand what practices and tools are available for managing employees, how to use them, and when to use them in different situations. Knowing that a picture is worth a thousand words, the work on this book began by developing an integrative framework for the strategic management of employees. This framework, which is woven throughout the chapters, shows the relationships among organizational demands, environmental influences, regulatory issues, and the three primary HR activities noted previously: work design and workforce planning, management of employee competencies, and management of employee attitudes and behaviors. These HR activities, when managed in concert and within the context of the HR challenges, lead to the desired employee contributions and create a sustainable competitive advantage for the organization.

Many chapters in this book focuses on more HR activities than other HRM textbooks and builds on the idea that context matters. Thus, chapters 4-14 have two parts.

The first part describes the principles of the HR activity. The goal is to help students acquire the tools appropriate for each activity. For example, when performance management is discussed, aspects of measuring employee performance, trade-offs with different performance evaluation approaches, and considerations of the process for evaluating employee performance are emphasized.

The second part of each chapter is where the difference between the approach of this text and other textbooks becomes clear. Emphasis is placed on the importance of context and how the context—the organizational demands and environmental factors—affects the choices made when applying the technical knowledge. Also emphasized is how HR challenges—the various organizational demands and numerous environmental influences—affect decisions about which performance management approach to apply and how to use it.

The fundamental principles for each HR activity are explored first, followed by a perspective on how these practices can be used to meet contextual challenges. This approach is used to help students put together the pieces better, rather than simply discussing context at the beginning of the semester and then focusing on each of the major functional activities, with only minor discussion of context. In many ways, a decision-making approach is taken, asking, “What if A? What if B?” Included are examples and Company Spotlights to highlight this information, followed by discussion questions, exercises, and short cases that give students a chance to apply chapter concepts.

This book also provides an edge for students interested in a career in HRM. These students will complete the course well grounded in the bigger organizational picture and be better able to make decisions about the HR tools to apply in different contexts. They will better understand the possible consequences of designing and implementing practices that support or conflict with organizational goals.

Improved Chapter Organization

Chapters 1 and 2 have been combined

Chapter 14 on Creating High-Performing HR Systems is now chapter 2

A new chapter on International Human Resource Management is now the last chapter


Chapter Content Changes

Chapter 1—Managing Employees for Competitive Advantage

All new chapter, combining chapters 1 and 2 from the previous edition

New introduction to the role of HR can play in helping a company address the UN

Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs)

Chapter 2—Creating High-Performing HR Systems

New location. Chapter 14 in prior editions is now chapter 2

New Company Spotlight: Liberty Latin America

Completely revised treatment of external and internal fit

New Company Spotlight: Intel

New coverage of strategic value

Updated examples of the application of HR Scorecards

New Company Spotlight: Kraft Heinz

New section: Applying the Principles of High-Performing HR Systems

Chapter 3—Regulatory Issues

New IBM example of EEO

Expanded coverage of protected classifications

New Company Spotlight: Washington State Department of Corrections

Coverage of COVID-19 as it relates to wage gaps

Expanded coverage of race discrimination

New Company Spotlight: Ben & Jerry’s

Expanded coverage of gender discrimination

New Company Spotlight: Helados La Tapatia

New coverage of national origin discrimination related to COVID-19

New material on genetic information discrimination

Chapter 4—Job Design and Job Analysis

New treatment of job descriptions and job specifications

Thoroughly revised approach to job design

New Company Spotlight: Starbucks

Updated treatment of job enlargement and job rotation

Substantially updated Company Spotlight: Lockheed Martin

Improved coverage of job identification and task statements

New coverage of how job design differs for smaller firms

New coverage of COVID-19-driven flexible work design and arrangements

All new coverage of remote work

Chapter 5—Workforce Planning

More focused description of the importance of workforce planning

Expanded coverage of turnover, including new material on restaurant turnover and the impact of COVID-19 and turnover in the medical profession

New material on economic conditions and external factors

Expanded coverage of industry trends in external factors

New survey data related to employee retention

Updated Company Spotlight: Target

New coverage of artificial intelligence

Entirely new coverage of layoffs

New Company Spotlight: Bank of America

New coverage of where workers are located, globally

Expanded coverage state-level WARN Acts

Chapter 6—Recruitment

New Schneider Electric example of internal recruitment

Expanded coverage of internal recruitment

Increased and updated coverage of digital advertising

New coverage of Women in Technology

Expanded coverage of educational institutions

New material on virtual recruiting

Updated coverage of recruiting at Marriott

New coverage of ghosting

New research findings from the Hinge Research Institute

Expanded treatment of the recruitment value proposition

New coverage of Forbe’s “America’s Best Employers for Diversity”

Coverage of COVID-19 as it relates to recruitment

Chapter 7—Selection

New coverage of person-group and person-organization fit

New coverage of test–retest reliability

New coverage of interrater reliability

New coverage of parallel forms reliability

New coverage of internal consistency reliability

New coverage of correlation coefficient

New coverage of selection bias

New coverage of measurement bias

New coverage of artificial intelligence

Added research on the importance of applicant scheduling

New coverage of weighted application blank

Expanded coverage of behavioral assessments

Additional material on final screening

Updated coverage of ban-the-box legal developments

New research on untreated employee substance abuse

New coverage of game-based assessments

Chapter 8—Learning and Development

Additional historical context

New Company Spotlight: Technology to Connect and Engage Employees During Onboarding

New material on the impact of COVID-19 on training

Expanded coverage of person analysis

Expanded coverage of driver training at UPS

Additional emphasis on apprenticeships, internships, and co-operative education programs

Expanded coverage of online and blended learning

New coverage of the President’s executive order to strengthen diversity, equity, and inclusion training

New coverage of state-level training requirements

New coverage of reskilling and upskilling

Additional material on career development

Chapter 9—Performance Management

Completely new perspective on the importance of performance management

New coverage of performance appraisals

New Company Spotlight: Goldman Sachs

Completely revised BARS example

All new content on the causes of poor performance

New coverage of terminable offenses

All new material on performance management in the context of strategy, company characteristics, culture, and employee concerns

Updated coverage of technology used in performance management

Chapter 10—Compensating Employees

New example of Unilever’s progressive compensation program

New research on compensation philosophies and strategies

New material on commercial job classification systems

New material on pay grades and pay ranges

Increased coverage of red-circles and green-circled jobs

New research on pay for individual employees

Improved coverage of closed-pay and open-pay systems

New coverage of minimum wages

Updated coverage of technology and its implications on compensation

New coverage of artificial intelligence

New coverage of compensation and sustainability

Updated Company Spotlight: Making a Living Wage at Costco

New material on pay inequality

Updated coverage of exempt employee salary requirements

Chapter 11—Incentives and Rewards

New coverage of theories of motivation in the employment context

Updated Company Spotlight: Lincoln Electric

New coverage of noncash incentives

New coverage of desirability of rewards

New material on diversity

New coverage of the perception of executive compensation

Chapter 12—Employee Benefits and Safety Programs

Updated Company Spotlight: Zappos

Updated payroll tax coverage

Coverage of the CARES Act in response to COVID-19

New coverage of return-to-work policies

New coverage of COVID-19 and workers’ compensation

New data on insurance benefits and premiums

New coverage of tiered formulary prescription drug plans

New research on the availability of paid time off and productivity

New coverage of tuition and education assistance

New data on the impact of mergers and acquisitions on benefit plans

New Company Spotlight: Four Seasons Hotel

Chapter 13—Labor Unions and Employee Management

Rewritten to improve the balance of employer and employee perspectives

All new treatment of the history of labor

New presentation of the Railway Labor Act of 1926, the Norris-Laguardia Act of 1932, and the National Labor Relations Act

New presentation of the National Labor Relations Board and unfair labor practices

New coverage of the Federal Mediation and Conciliation Service

New presentation of the Labor Management Reporting and Disclosure Act of 1959

Increased coverage of local unions

New section on Federation

New Company Spotlight: Amazon Union Election

Improved coverage of chard checks and neutrality agreements

New Company Spotlight: Volkswagen

New coverage of collective bargaining, the grievance process, and public sector unions

New Company Spotlight: Marriott Strike

New sections on domestic and global trends

Chapter 14—International Human Resource Management

All new chapter on international HRM

Expand/Collapse All
Table of Contents (pg. i)
Chapter 1 Managing Employees for Competitive Advantage (pg. 3)
Chapter 2 Creating High-Performing HR Systems (pg. 43)
Chapter 3 Regulatory Issues (pg. 73)
Chapter 4 Job Design and Job Analysis (pg. 117)
Chapter 5 Workforce Planning (pg. 161)
Chapter 6 Recruitment (pg. 201)
Chapter 7 Selection (pg. 243)
Chapter 8 Learning and Development (pg. 291)
Chapter 9 Performance Management (pg. 341)
Chapter 10 Compensating Employees (pg. 383)
Chapter 11 Incentives and Rewards (pg. 423)
Chapter 12 Employee Benefits and Safety Programs (pg. 457)
Chapter 13 Labor Unions and Employee Management (pg. 505)
Chapter 14 International Human Resource Management (pg. 535)
Index (pg. 561)

Mary Gowan

MARY GOWAN is dean of the Mike Cottrell College of Business and professor of management at the University of North Georgia.  She previously served as business dean at James Madison University and at Elon University, and Associate Dean at George Washington University. Her Ph.D. is in business administration from the University of Georgia. Her extensive teaching, research, and consulting experience focuses on human resource management and organizational behavior, and includes international teaching and research. She is currently on the boards of the Southern Business Association of Administrators, Beta Gamma Sigma, and the North Georgia Community Foundation.  Previously, she served as a board member of the Society for Human Resource Management Foundation, the Human Resource Division of the Academy of Management, and the Southern Management Association, along with a number of other nonprofit organizations. She has served on a number of journal editorial boards and published research focused on career transitions and related HR topics, and has been published in the Academy of Management Journal, Journal of Applied Psychology, and numerous other HR related journals.


Beverly DeMarr

BEVERLY J. DEMARR is professor of management at Ferris State University. She received her doctorate in organizational behavior and human resource management from Michigan State University. She has been recognized multiple times for teaching excellence and currently teaches courses in human resource management, negotiation, compensation, and business ethics. She is the author of Negotiation and Dispute Resolution 2E (coauthored with Suzanne de Janasz) and has published articles in Personnel Psychology, Journal of Business Ethics, Human Relations, Public Personnel Management, and International Journal of Conflict Management. She is an active member of the Academy of Management and the Organizational Behavior Teaching Society. She is a member of the Journal of Management Education editorial review board and was chair of the Academy of Management’s all-academy Teaching Theme Committee from 2016 to 2019. She served as a community mediator for more than 100 employment, civil rights, general civil, domestic relations (divorce, parenting time), and restorative justice (victim–offender) cases and was a member of the Board of Directors of the Westshore Dispute Resolution Center. She was also an elected union representative for eight years, negotiating labor contracts and representing constituents in a wide variety of disputes.



Jannifer David

JANNIFER GREGORY DAVID currently serves as the Interim Associate Dean of the Labovitz School of Business & Economics (LSBE) at the University of Minnesota Duluth (UMD). She taught as a human resource management faculty member in LSBE from 2001 to 2021. Her courses included undergraduate, graduate and certificate courses in human resource management including international HRM, employee staffing, employee training & development, and labor history in UMD’s University Honors programs. Her research streams consider the effects of contingent workers on the employment relationships of regular employees and how organizations can find and hire employees with work passion. Through this research, she aims to improve employment relationships and their outcomes for both organizations and employees. Her research has been published in numerous peer-reviewed journals and been presented at conferences. Prior to joining UMD, she worked as a consultant for many years at Mercer HR Consulting. She earned her PhD in labor and industrial relations from Michigan State University.


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