Aligning High Performance Work Systems with Internal Organizational Context: Case Studies from Sri Lankan IT Companies

V.K.M. Cooray, N.W.K.D.K. Dayarathna


High performance work systems (HPWS) gained much interest in recent years as a human resource (HR) system contributing towardsorganizational performance. However, studies on HPWS and organizational performance have reported mixed results. While some found that HPWS result in improved organizational performance, later research revealed that HPWS do not always result in positive outcomes. This necessitates understanding on effective implementation of HPWS to achieve the desired outcomes. However, there is lack of research on how HPWS strength shapes the implementation of HPWS. Hence, we aim to bridge this gap by examining the implications of HPWS strength on the performance of Sri LankanInformation Technology (IT)companies. For this purpose, we deployed a case study approach selecting two companies. Interviews were carried out among 13 key informants representing senior management, HR personnel and non-managerial employees. Document review and direct observations were used to further collaborate the evidence from interviews. The findings supported the research proposition that to yield positive outcomes on organizational performance, there should be a strong HPWS,resulting in a positive attitudinal climate among employees.

Key Words: High Performance Work Systems, Organizational Performance, Information Technology Industry, Sri Lanka

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