MM339-Strategic Human Resource Management

Module Provider: International Business and Strategy
Number of credits: 20 [10 ECTS credits]
Terms in which taught: Spring term module
Pre-requisites: MM277 Human Resource Management or MM276 Business Strategy or MM254 Organisational Behaviour or MM340 International Human Resource Management
Non-modular pre-requisites: BEFORE TAKING THIS MODULE YOU MUST TAKE MM277 OR TAKE MM276 OR TAKE MM254 OR TAKE MM340. For students on programmes in Real Estate and Planning, this module may be taken as an option at Part 3 only with either MM277 OR MM340
Modules excluded:
Current from: 2022/3

Module Convenor: Dr Chul Chung

Type of module:

Summary module description:
This is an advanced module in Strategic Human Resource Management, which examines how companies manage people at work, and appraises the relationships between strategy, HRM and performance.


Decisions and choices in human resource management (HRM) have to take into account the priorities and objectives of the organisation, while also accommodating the needs and expectations of its employees. This module explores the tensions and dilemmas associated with trying to balance these two perspectives. It focuses on HRM options and choices that are ‘strategic’ because they involve thinking about how to respond to commercial imperatives, growth opportunities and business change. Students are expected to be able to understand links between the business models adopted by a firm, and the associated HR choices and activities. 

Assessable learning outcomes:
1. To critically evaluate approaches to the strategic management of people in organisations
2. To explain how HRM can contribute to improvement of organisational performance
3. To explain the objectives and nature of specific areas of strategic HRM practices
4. To critically evaluate the tensions and dilemmas associated with strategic HRM

Additional outcomes:
The module content should help students navigate the graduate labour market in the UK, and by understanding more fully what future employers are likely to expect of them during the recruitment process, they should be better prepared as they enter the professional workplace. Students are encouraged to develop and apply creative as well as critical thinking.

Outline content:

1. Strategy and HRM  

2. Approaches to strategic HRM: strategic fit 

3. Strategy and staffing 

4. Strategy and performance management system 

5. Strategy and reward systems 

6. Strategy and participatory employment systems 

7. SHRM for sustained competitive advantage 

8. Strategic HRM systems and architecture 

9. HRM-performance relationship 

10. HRM goals and strategic tensions in SHRM 

Brief description of teaching and learning methods:
The material will be covered through a combination of lectures, case studies and tutorials. A strong emphasis will be placed on student participation and on activities and discussions in classroom. In case studies during lectures, companies’ approach to HRM will be presented and discussed to provide an opportunity to learn from real examples. In tutorials students will work in small groups through activities designed to increase their understanding of the core topics, including learning by doing and using creative problem-solving techniques.

Contact hours:
  Autumn Spring Summer
Lectures 20
Tutorials 4
Guided independent study:      
    Wider reading (independent) 24
    Exam revision/preparation 50
    Advance preparation for classes 30
    Preparation for tutorials 12
    Essay preparation 60
Total hours by term 0 150 50
Total hours for module 200

Summative Assessment Methods:
Method Percentage
Written exam 70
Written assignment including essay 30

Summative assessment- Examinations:

One 2-hour unseen written paper with a weight of 70% in the overall assessment of the module.

Summative assessment- Coursework and in-class tests:

One piece of written work of 2,500 words (plus/minus 10% leeway allowed). (submission date: the first week of Summer term).

Formative assessment methods:

Feedback on group work:

Students as a group will be required to present their discussion outcomes in tutorials and feedback on the presentations will be given to improve the performance of coursework.

Penalties for late submission:

University penalties for late submission apply.  See: 

You are strongly advised to ensure that coursework is submitted by the relevant deadline. You should note that it is advisable to submit work in an unfinished state rather than to fail to submit any work. 

Assessment requirements for a pass:
A weighted average mark of coursework and examination of 40%.

Reassessment arrangements:

By written examination only. Re-examination for Finals takes place in August of the same year. 

Additional Costs (specified where applicable):

Required text book £49.99 (RRP)

'Strategy and Human Resource Management, fourth edition' by Peter Boxall & John Purcell.?  

An online version?can be accessed via our Library e-resources without any cost 

Last updated: 22 September 2022


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