University of Reading, 2024
This research study examines the impact of strategic workforce planning and analytics on organisational change success. It is grounded in the theoretical foundations of Strategic Human Resource Management (SHRM) and organisational change literature, also looking at workforce planning and analytics measurement frameworks. This resulted in the articulation of three research questions: 1. What is the impact of strategic workforce planning (SWP) on organisational change success? 2. Do workforce analytics, as part of strategic workforce planning, positively affect change implementation effectiveness? 3. Does commitment to organisational change mediate the relationship between fit, flexibility, HR analytics, and organisational change success? The research design, data collection, and analysis followed eight clear stages linked with different activities, ensuring an early exchange with practitioners to bridge academic rigour with business relevance. A global survey was launched in January 2019 and remained open until September 2019 to collect data from 348 participants using predominately clients of Mercer, a leading global HR consultancy firm. The empirical investigation involved regression analysis for mediation with the use of the Hayes PROCESS macro and exploratory factor analysis (EFA) in SPSS, as well as confirmatory factor analysis (CFA) and structural equation modelling (SEM) to test the hypotheses in SPSS Amos. This research study addressed method bias, incorporate procedural measures, and statistical remedies, but found no violation of the multicollinearity assumption. This research model employed SWP related concepts of fit – both vertical and horizontal – flexibility, a dynamic capability, and HR analytics. Vertical fit aligns HR strategies with organisational strategies. Horizontal fit integrates and aligns distinct HR activities, such as several HR practices, referred to as high-performance work systems (HPWS). The research findings confirmed that these concepts support organisations during change initiatives and in their implementation efforts. Affective commitment to change is positive and mediates all relationships. None of the three control variables – organisation size in terms of the number of employees, type of industry, and regional comparisons – affects organisational change success. The essential contribution to both theory and practice is the development of a framework as a meaningful discussion basis for practitioners and academics. This framework shows the logical relations of SWP as an enabler of organisational change blending vertical- and horizontal fit with flexible HR practices, as well as utilising HR analytics that ultimately may enhance the overall commitment of employees during change initiatives. Empirical contributions include a potential new validated outcome variable, capturing organisational change success. Methodological contributions comprise of increasing awareness of a not so widely known research method for practitioner-oriented SHRM research by rigorously applying convergent interviewing for the survey feasibility study. Conceptually, a significant contribution to SHRM theory is that this research study combined vertical- and horizontal fit with flexible HR practices and HR analytics.