Enacting the HRM Role: What Matters to Line Managers?

Nik Hazimah Nik Mat, Hayatul Safrah Salleh, Wan Norhayati Mohamed, Yusnita Yusof


Line managers’ performance in enacting the HRM role has been criticized as they failed to meet the expectations of organizational members. Meanwhile, limitations in exploring the development of the line managers’ HRM role have been identified in several areas. One of these limitations is the tendency of research to focus on HR specialists view, but failed to place line manager at the centre of the research analysis. To gain a deeper understanding of the causes and outcomes of line managers’ HRM role, it is important to gather line managers’ experience as a role holder. Drawing on a role theory concept, case studies are conducted at three Malaysian airports to gather in-depth data about line managers’ HRM role. 23 interviews were carried out with line managers at the selected airports to understand the challenges they experience in enacting their HRM roles. Line managers’ challenges are measured on five factors: desire, capability, competencies, support and HRM policy and procedures. This study revealed that line managers perceived no real challenges hindering them from performing their HRM role. Work environment is a new challenge identified in this study that influence line managers’ performance in enacting their HRM role. Importantly, line managers suggested some improvement would assist them in performing better, particularly in terms of sufficient and consistent support from superiors and HR specialists. A clear feedback regarding the implementation of HRM policies and procedures from superiors is regarded as an important tool for line managers in improving their HRM role performance.

DOI: 10.5901/mjss.2015.v6n3p535

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Mediterranean Journal of Social Sciences ISSN 2039-9340(Print) ISSN 2039-2117(Online)

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