International Journal of Human Resource Management vol:23 issue:7 pages:1481-1506
The purpose of this study is to develop and validate a theoretically grounded instrument to measure perceived HRM system strength. Relying on the work of Bowen and Ostroff (2004), we identify different constructs capturing measurable features of a strong HRM system. Next, we develop items to measure these constructs, and use two different samples to validate the instrument. The first sample consists of line managers coming from one firm, the second sample of trade union representatives coming from different firms. We focus on both HR agents because they are crucial actors in developing, communicating and implementing HR practices. If the HR department wants to create a strong organizational climate, it needs to create an HRM system that is perceived as distinct, consistent and unambiguous by both HR agents. If it does so, the likelihood increases that the strong HRM system is translated into a strong people management system, and subsequently into the creation of shared perceptions among employees of what is expected of them. The resulting instrument builds on eleven constructs, organized along three different hierarchical levels. It is useful for HR practitioners in evaluating their functioning and for researchers to further test and develop theoretical insights in the HRM-performance relationship.