HR Strategies Essay

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1 Introduction For most of the 20th century, the number of tasks and levels in large organisations grew incrementally, with new job and career opportunities to full-time employees. The introduction of the 21st century brought about fundamental changes because of numerous factors including global developments both technological and economical, changing labour market trends and the need for flexibility. As such, organisations have cut back their operations, closed facilities or outsourced non-core activities to specialist providers. The need for cost reduction, speed and flexibility lead organisations to reduce full-time employees thus, offering temporary employment. The global labour market trend continually undergoes extensive transformation causing difficulty recruiting and retaining qualified staff. Hence, private and public organisations are becoming reliant on alternative employee work patterns. Miles and Millward (2005, 401) states that “Career theories have recently been categorised into two groups: established theories and emerging theories, based on two major schools of thinking termed objectivist and constructivist approaches respectively.” Traditional theories regard career as linear, hierarchical and rigid, based on objectivist beliefs while emerging theories from a socially constructivist ideology, where career development is a dynamic, complex and ever-evolving concept. Many argue that career theory and practice that once emphasised person variables such as abilities, needs and interests have recently due to career changes, begun focusing on environmental variables such as cultural context issues. This emphasis on contextual variables reflects significant movement toward attaining cultural relevance in career theory and practice, such as role salience and values. Both the objectivist and constructivist paradigms contribute to the

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