Human resource management as a competitive advantage : the case of a Hong Kong based power utility

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Human resource management as a competitive advantage : the case of a Hong Kong based power utility


Author: Ho, Kwong-tai
Title: Human resource management as a competitive advantage : the case of a Hong Kong based power utility
Degree: M.B.A.
Year: 2001
Subject: Hong Kong Polytechnic University -- Dissertations
Electric power systems -- China -- Hong Kong -- Case studies
Personnel management -- China -- Hong Kong -- Case studies
Department: Dept. of Management
Pages: iii, 130 leaves : ill. ; 30 cm
Language: English
Abstract: In response to changes in the competitive environment, a rapid and fundamental shift is taking place in many leading companies in Hong Kong. The corporation is organised away from internally focused and hierarchical typical of organisation toward a more externally focused and often flatter organisation. In such organisations, each manager has clear objectives, is empowered to take initiatives, and is held accountable for performance. These organisations are typically driven by a strong vision and set of values and expectations. To address the challenges of changes, P Company, a Power Utility in Hong Kong, has embarked upon a series of changes especially in human resources policies and practices. These changes include training and development, staff selection, pay system, and performance appraisal. The dynamic force exerting influences from shareholders, management, government, and the public are analysed from the recent policies implemented, annual reports, and newspapers. Theoretical concepts from the resource-based view of the company (Barney, 1991) to discuss how human resource meet the criteria for sustained competitive advantage in that they are valuable, rare, inimitable and non-substitutable. The mechanism and implications for developing human resource as source of sustained competitive advantage are discussed. The response and behaviour of the employees are obtained by employing questionnaires. The findings are vigorously evaluated and the results form an interrelated pattern. Principal component analysis were performed on 32 statements which measured how their managers viewed the effect of current human resources policies and practices that could create sustainable competitive advantage in view of the threat of deregulation. The reliabilities of these scales were assessed using Cronbach's alpha coefficient and the results show that the reliabilities for these scale are acceptable (most above 0.8) Major issues are identified. These issues are communication and participation. From the results obtained, it is believed that the behaviour of the human capital pool of the P Company is in line with company goals. If the senior management understand that high quality resource capital pool is the source of the sustained competitive advantage, the P Company will achieve its vision: 'To be the one of the best Utility in the World'.

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