Tamiko Kasahara
Shingo Nishii

Published in

Volume 13, Issue 1, p61-76, March 2013


This study aims to address strategic HRM thinking under global strategy at an overseas corporation of global Knowledge Intensive Firms (KIFs) by using an exploratory case study of one of the leading global KIFs (Firm A) and the Japanese subsidiary of Firm A (Firm AJ). The study employed case study methodology. Primary data were collected through semistructured interviews with President and CEO of Firm AJ and between 2008 to early 2012. The reason of contacting to CEO of Firm AJ is that he has a thorough knowledge of Firm AJ’s longitudinal activities including HRM as well as Firm A group’s global strategy. The global strategy of Firm A group is so–called a ‘global (standardized) strategy’. However, Firm A group does not merely pursue the advantages of global standardization in isolation; they also pursue to build global competitive advantages through standardized HRM systems and ‘glocal’ HRM practices. The study generated valuable insights into the important global management issue for KIFs–i.e., a strategic alignment between parent and subsidiary as well as between business and HRM. The findings highlighted the criticality of building standardized HRM systems and managing a pool of talented people through global HRM practices. In addition, the study also revealed important management challenges in developing effective local HRM practices which support and improve a KIFs’s global strategy and business model. Due to the nature of case study method adopted, the longitudinal, contextual rich insights obtained from this study need to be interpreted with due caution–i.e., possible lack of external validity.

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