Multinational Companies and Global Human Resource Strategies

Multinational Companies and Global Human Resource Strategies

by William N. Cooke


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In our increasingly competitive, uncertain, complex world marketplace, multinational companies, unions, and governments must rethink and adjust their human resource strategies and legislative policies again and again. Cooke and the contributors to this wide ranging volume provide case studies and original analyses of present and coming human resource issues and problems. Offering a balanced, objective understanding of what they are, they thus succeed in giving HR executives and public policymakers a way to devise more creative and workable coping strategies. Among the book's major points: MNCs usually underestimate the influence that differences in industrial relations systems, workplace cultures, and local resistance to certain HR policies can all have on their operations. Unions too often fail to develop effective transnational and inter-union strategies to better serve their memberships in other countries and cultures. And public policy makers are torn between policies meant to respond to a need for workplace efficiency, against other policies meant to promote worker equity. The book addresses these and other issues hitherto explored minimally or not at all and provides analytical, practical insights that have long-term generalizability and applicability. Unique in its depth of ideas representing a vast range of expertise, the book is a compelling addition to the literature on human resource management, and a necessary resource for executives at all levals in all types of global organizations.

The contributors examine, first, the foreign direct investment configuration strategies of multinationals, then the transnational diffusion of human resource and labor relations strategies. Among the topics they cover are, how MNCs choose to diffuse the policies of the domestic parent company into their foreign subsidiaries, or how they decide to adopt policies and practices that originate in the host countries. They take up the issues of organized labor's generally diminishing relative power in a rapidly changing global workplace, then focus on transnational collective bargaining strategies and sociopolitical action. Finally, by recognizing recent multilateral agreements governing workplaces across borders, the contributors are able to assess the European Union Directive on transnational works councils and the labor aspects and agreements of NAFTA.

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Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781567205831
Publisher: ABC-CLIO, Incorporated
Publication date: 02/28/2003
Pages: 440
Product dimensions: 6.30(w) x 9.30(h) x 1.50(d)

About the Author

WILLIAM N. COOKE is Director of the Douglas A. Fraser Center for Workplace Issues, and Senior Research Professor in the College of Urban, Labor, and Metropolitan Affairs, Wayne State University. He is also the founder and faculty director of the Strategic Collective Bargaining executive education program at the University of Michigan's School of Business.

Table of Contents

Global Human Resource Strategies: A Framework and Overview by William Cooke

Foreign Direct Investment Strategies and Industrial Relations Systems

Foreign Direct Investment and Its Employment Opportunities in Perspective: Meeting the Great Expectations of Developing Countries? by Gabriele Köhler

MNCs and Global Commodity Chains: Implications for Labor Strategies by Jennifer Bair and Harvie Ramsay

The Influence of Industrial Relations System Factors on Foreign Direct Investment by William Cooke

The Effect of Different Industrial Relations Systems in the U.S. and the European Union on Foreign Direct Investment Flows by Morris Kleiner and Hwikwon Ham

Multinational Company Human Resource Management and Labor Relations Strategies

A Process Model of Strategic HRM/LR Change in MNCs: The Case of AT&T and NCR in the U.K. by Graeme Martin, Phil Beaumont, and Judy Pate

Transferring the Learning Factory to America? The Japanese Television Assembly Transplants by Martin Kenney and Shoko Tanaka

Convergence or Divergence of Contingent Employment Practices?: Evidence of the Role of MNCs in Europe by Chris Brewster and Olga Tregaskis

MNCs as Diffusers of Best Practices in HRM/LR in Developing Countries by Sarosh Kuruvilla, Stephen Frenkel, and David Peetz

Transnational Union Strategies

Dual Sourcing at Ford in the U.S. and Mexico: Implications for Labor Relations and Union Strategies by Steve Babson

Local Union Responses to Continental Standardization of Production and Work in GM's North American Truck Assembly Plants by Christopher Huxley

Out of the Ashes: The Steelworkers' Global Campaign at Bridgestone/Firestone by Tom Juravich and Kate Bronfenbrenner

Strategic International Laborism: MNCs and Labor in the Graphical Sector by John Gennard and Harvie Ramsay

Transnational Workplace Regulation

Sailing Beyond the Reach of Workplace Regulations: Worker Exploitation by MNCs on the High Seas by Clifford B. Donn

Carrot or Stick? How MNCs Have Reacted to the European Works Council Directive by Trevor Bain and Kim Hester

Early Days: Belgian and U.K. Experiences of European Works Councils by ThéRÈse Beaupain, Steve Jefferys, and Rachel Annand

Regulating Employee Interest Representation: The Case of McDonald's in the European Union by Tony Royle and Brian Towers

NAFTA's Labor Side Agreement: Withering as an Effective Labor Law Enforcement and MNC Compliance Strategy? by Mario F. Bognanno and Jiangfeng Lu

Summary and Conclusion

The Role of Power and Implications for Transnational Workplace Outcomes by William Cooke


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