The Transition of Korean Human Resource Management (HRM) System from Cultural Orientation to a Diversity, Fragmentation and Performance Approach.

Erhan Atay, Susanna Ayvaz

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Human Resource Management (HRM) has played an essential role in the global success of Korean organizations. Korea itself has experienced major transitions - from being a kingdom to becoming a republic - after having been part of World War II and the Korean War. These developments also led to transitions in the business establishments and in the labor markets of Korea. In this study, the authors have used data from the Korean Statistics database to present an analysis of the transition of Korean HR systems and HRM approaches and methods. Organizations which were managed by HRM practices based on seniority and paternalism began to experience a shift towards practices that prioritized performance and productivity. Korean HRM is in the transition to the direction of diversification of the workforce, increase in the number of part-timers, the inclusion of more females and immigrants. The transition of HRM systems has led to a performance-focus vis-à-vis the earlier loyalty-focus. The authors have proposed that a balance needs to be struck between these foci, by including humanitarian concepts inherent to Korean culture in these HRM systems while focusing on performance and productivity.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)7-27
Number of pages21
JournalSouth Asian Journal of Management
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jan 2020

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