An exploration into transfer of knowledge acquired from taught MSc Human Resource Management (HRM) programmes into workplace Human Resource (HR) Departments and wider dissemination across intra-organisational boundaries.
AffiliationUniversity of Derby
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AbstractThe purpose of this thesis was to explore how knowledge gained during taught Masters in Human Resource Management (MSc HRM) programmes was transferred into working organisations, whether knowledge gained from academic study could be transferred if individuals were motivated to transfer and if organisations had a culture that was receptive to transfer. The term knowledge transfer was defined as sharing of information between one individual and another individual or group. This study looked at the perceived value of Human Resource (HR) knowledge within organisational contexts, with a focus on how knowledge flowed and what facilitated or blocked that flow. A ‘two-tailed’ case study approach was taken using a social construction methodology and was applied across three University Centres, utilising students studying on MSc HRM programmes and their respective work organisations, plus Operational Managers within the same geographical boundaries. Data was gathered using qualitative methods and analysed thematically. A key finding of this study was that knowledge gained from MSc HRM programmes is valued within organisational contexts. HR professionals effectively transferred knowledge into their organisational functions and amongst workplace communities and via wider networks, in a homogenous manner. However, the study also found that transfer of knowledge across work boundaries, via heterogeneous workplace communities, was less effective. Individual willingness to transfer knowledge was found, but issues linked to organisational culture such as politics, power and structure was found to influence the extent of knowledge transfer activities. It was evident that in order for knowledge transfer to be effective an organisational culture based on mutual support and understanding was required. If an organisation had a culture focused on Key Performance Indicators (KPI) that reinforce knowledge transfer across team boundaries then heterogeneous workplace communities emerged. Organisations that deliberately focused on knowledge transfer evidenced a greater ability to transfer knowledge across organisational functions; this strategy was beneficial to organisational growth. This study concluded that building on workplace communities and managing a deliberate introduction of heterogeneous workplace communities enabled MSc HRM acquired-knowledge to be transferred cross organisationally. Although this study focused on the transfer of knowledge from MSc HRM programmes the concept behind using workplace communities to transfer and build knowledge could potentially be transferable to other disciplines. Two further areas of research were identified: firstly, action research within University Centres to ascertain the benefit of cross-discipline teaching, secondly, analysis of an organisation with a heterogeneous community design.
CitationCorner, H. (2018) 'An exploration into transfer of knowledge acquired from taught MSc Human Resource Management (HRM) programmes into workplace Human Resource (HR) Departments and wider dissemination across intra-organisational boundaries.' University of Derby [EdD Thesis]
PublisherUniversity of Derby
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