To Fit or Not to Fit, That is the Question?

We are looking at the how and why of truly fitting a “best practice” into your organization.  Pursing the prolific best practice is noble, but is that practice actually a best fit?  Al-Karim Samnani and Parbudyal Singh from the School of Human Resource Management at York University have examined the need for a holistic approach to understanding your organization and determining which best practices will actually be of greatest benefit.  The following steps are vital to understanding your needs and finding that best fit: 

  1. Organizational development efforts can be of greatest benefit when closely aligned with the organizational business strategy.  Have your HR professionals or consultants actually examined your business strategy to understand the goals and challenges you face to guide their development?  Assessing markets, resource availability and competitors are important factors to consider when training, coaching and leading development.
  2. There must also be a careful vertical alignment with business and HRM strategy to insure that the investments in learning reflect business strategy.  Such focus on alignment has been found to result in higher firm financial performance through tints influence on employee productivity, efficiency, and customer alignment (Yound et al., 1996).
  3. Lastly, there must be horizontal integration within HRM sub-functions like employee incentive programs and performance appraisals.

If there is a focus on fit within the HRM system, with business strategy, and within the broader context of external business strategy and environment; then organizations will become much more likely to result in a sustainable competitive advantage (Becker & Huselid, 2006).

In our next blog we will look at a concrete example of this process in Wegmans Food Market Inc.  Arrive early for the best deals!


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