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What Is the Role of Globalization in Human Resource Management?

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  • Written By: Esther Ejim
  • Edited By: Kaci Lane Hindman
  • Last Modified Date: 16 November 2016
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The role of globalization in human resource management is how the basic principles of human resources (HR) management as a whole can be applied on a global scale to make the coordination of these practices more effective. That is to say, issues like the selection of employees, their training and improvement, promotion issues, welfare, labor laws, and other concerns, like corporate social responsibility, are applied on a more global basis. This all applies most to those companies that have more of an international presence rather than a strictly domestic one.

An international corporation with branches, outlets, and subsidiaries in several countries needs to integrate its main human resources department, which may be located in the company’s headquarters, with other HR departments in its branches. Sometimes, the process of coordinating issues requires some tact and diplomacy to match the culture and environment in which the business is operating. Concerns may arise, for example, when weekends and national holidays apply to the customs followed by the host country. Depending on the major faith or religion, the weekend starts on a Friday in some countries and Saturday in others. This is a conflict that human resources must manage and implement to reflect the various holidays and weekends in their branches and subsidiaries all over the world.

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The culture of the host country is also a major consideration for the impact of globalization in human resource management. HR departments must amend their policies to make room for the culture of the host country so as to avoid any inadvertent act that might potentially create a conflict. The department must also work with the applicable labor unions and leaders in the country so as to avoid any unnecessary clashes with workers regarding employment practices.

Human resource management also plays a role in corporate responsibility and the perception of the host community toward the company. In order to maintain a good relationship with the host culture, HR must study the environment in order to find out ways in which it can contribute toward the welfare and development of the people. This will not only help the company be viewed in a positive light by the host, it can also be used as a strategic marketing and promotion platform from which the company can also benefit.

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