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What is the Project Manager’s responsibility and accountability in Competence Management of Project Team Members in Project-oriented firms?
Karlstad University, Faculty of Economic Sciences, Communication and IT.
2011 (English)Independent thesis Advanced level (degree of Master (One Year)), 10 credits / 15 HE creditsStudent thesis
Abstract [en]

The number of projects is increasing and will continue to increase. Competence shifts are often performed in a project context taking an organization from one point to another. This could be organizational or process changes, service or product developments, implementation of new IT solutions, entering new markets or changes in client relations. This is applicable for both private business and public sector. The current trend is that organizations tend to be more project-oriented, especially in knowledge based environments.

This situation leads to a need for the organizations to manage their competences in alignment with their long-term goals and objectives and this is part of Human Resource Management, (HRM).

HRM, by today, mainly focus on the direct employment relationship between the line organization and the employees, and mainly involve HR department and line managers. When the organizations tend to be more project-oriented, and a considerable part of the work is performed in projects in coexistence with a line organization, the HRM and HRM practices need to be expanded to include the projects and the project managers, mainly in terms of managing competences.

Up to date there is little research focused on HRM Practices and project-oriented firms. Research in this area will help the firms to manage their competences more efficient but also help the project managers to act as contributors to the firm’s long-term goals.

The present study was done by a review of the current literature from three different perspectives: HRM Practices, project-oriented firms and project management. This gave a view of competence management from these three perspectives and the foundation to define hypothesis and to develop the quantitative study. It also led to a definition of HRM Competence Management Practices (Selection, Training & Development, Performance Measurement and Internal Promotion) as a subset of HRM Practices, which was the study’s first contribution.

The web-based survey used for the quantitative study was developed after in-depth interviews with four project managers from different firms. The survey was distributed through PMI’s Swedish Chapter web site and through my personal network where it was directed to the target groups; project team members and project managers in project-oriented firms.

Another contribution was that the study showed a gap in both the current literature and the current situation in project-oriented firms in respect of the project manager’s participation in competence management. I also showed that there is a positive effect in adding responsibility and accountability to the project manager in respect of strategic competence management.

The study highlights theoretical implications as: 1) Harmonization of typology and terms to achieve more uniformed terminology; 2) Integration of HRM and project-orientation where HRM are expanded to include projects as an organizational structure; 3) Inclusion of external competence as a part of HRM.

From the practical implications view the study highlights: 1) Integrate the project manager with the strategic competence management process resulting in a more predictable strategic competence management; 2) Make the roles and responsibility for the different actors in competence management clear including the HR department, line management and project management; 3) Make the project team members more aware of the HRM practices which increases the motivation. 4) Integrate external competence in the competence management process to secure that external competence is taking into consideration to meet the firm’s goals and objectives in terms of strategic competence.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2011. , 106 p.
Keyword [en]
HRM, HRM Practices, Project-orientation, Project Management, Competence, Competence Management, Competitive advantage. Temporary organisations
National Category
Economics and Business
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:kau:diva-9073Local ID: INF D-16OAI: oai:DiVA.org:kau-9073DiVA: diva2:473372
Subject / course
Project Leadership
Uppsok
Social and Behavioural Science, Law
Supervisors
Examiners
Available from: 2012-03-07 Created: 2012-01-05 Last updated: 2012-03-07Bibliographically approved

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