Exploring the relationship between HRM and firm performance: A meta-analysis of longitudinal studies

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Saridakis, G. ; Lai, Y. ; Cooper, C.L. (2016)

Existing literature on human resource management (HRM) practices and firm performance suggests that there is a positive association between the two variables. Most of the studies, however, are based on cross-sectional datasets and only few of them use panel or longitudinal datasets, which better allow the researchers to deal with problems of endogeneity. This paper draws on meta-analysis techniques to estimate the effect size of the relationship between high performance work practices (HPWPs) and firm performance measures based on the available longitudinal studies. We also examine whether the effect is greater for a combination of HPWPs than for individual HPWPs, and for operational performance than for financial performance. The results from statistical aggregation of eight longitudinal HRM-performance studies demonstrate an overall reported correlation of 0.287. Additionally we find that a set of integrated, mutually reinforcing HPWPs has a stronger impact on firm performance than do HRM practices individually and that, this effect is statistically invariant between operational performance and financial performance.
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