Strategic Human Capital Management

Creating Value Through People


  • Jon Ingham, Executive Consultant, Strategic Dynamics Consultancy Services Ltd.

Strategic human capital management (HCM) is not just a measurement focused approach to human resource management (HRM). It is certainly not a decision science in which people can be managed as a result of quantitative analysis and financial valuation. In fact, it is probably more of an art than a science and is a way of leading people to unlock great business performance. Strategic HCM focuses all people management and development practices on maximizing the capability and engagement of the people working for an organization to create valuable intangible capability, human capital, which enables the organisation to take full advantage of potential business opportunities. Unlike HRM which focuses on getting closer and closer to the business, strategic HCM draws its energy from people, from their individual strengths, interests and motivations, which, aligned with long-term business strategy, can increasingly provide the main basis for differentiation and competitive advantage. However, the perspective also recognizes that measurement is important, and the book outlines an approach to measurement which recognizes the importance of knowledge, complexity, best fit and intangibility. Pulling together seemingly disparate strands of thinking, the book calls for a paradigm change in which people really are seen as an organisation’s most important asset, and are managed in a way that reflects this fact. The text includes case studies from leading private and public sector organizations and commentary from HR practitioners and academics.
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Primary: Senior HR professionals; Change and OD practitioners.Secondary: Strategic HR executive programmes.Although the concepts presented in the book apply globally, some of the context, models and tools will be UK specific, so the target market is the UK.


Book information

  • Published: October 2006
  • ISBN: 978-0-7506-8134-6


That people’s capacity to unlock the performance of organizations is far from a simplistic and causal model is hardly new. A book offering a new way of explaining how such complexity can be managed and harnessed for the good of organizations certainly is. This is a book to address HR’s continuing inability to think outside the box of how people influence performance. Read, reflect and act. Dr. Anthony Hesketh Director Centre for Performance-Led HR Lancaster University Management School This book, whilst acknowledging the importance of measurement, rightly focuses attention on what HCM approaches deliver increased business performance. ...For HR professionals it will give confidence that they do have a unique and critical contribution to make which they are being expected to step up to. Malcolm Hurrell Vice-President Human Resources UK AstraZeneca plc A text book that's a pleasure to read, one that immediately gets to the key issues of measurement - not to raise the profile of HR but to provide valuable and credible data for future decisions and policy foundation. Demonstrates that 'one size does not fit all' and reminds the reader of the value of personal judgement as well as utilizing a range of measurement criteria. Clearly written by someone that has operated in this field. The reader is taken through a great no nonsense approach to HCM in a structured but interactive manner, with case studies that bring the subject alive. Questions that are stimulated as you read through each chapter are then both asked and answered in an excellent Q & A summary, This is achieved in a way that ultimately still lets the reader form their own conclusions and determination of the relevant to their own organization. Sue Boxall Group HR Manager Element Six Ltd This is an important summary of and contribution to the current state of the debate on Human Capital Management, drawing together and developing the array of disparate themes. Jon Ingham has made powerful statement in favour of the primacy of value over counting and measurement. The book is an impressive combination of the scholarly and the practical, containing much food for thought and plenty of ideas to steal. David Leech Head of Human Resources CMS Cameron Mckenna LLP Strategic Human Capital Management is a comprehensive, thorough and well-researched survey of the landscape of Human Capital Management which demonstrates the changing position and growing importance of high quality people management in the success of modern organizations. The theoretical models presented are backed up by reference to the relevant academic and management research and brought to life by case studies in a variety of organizations, many from Jon Ingham's personal experience, which ensures that the tone remains fresh and vigorous. Whilst the book covers the issues of measurement and reporting, it also broadens out the debate on the nature of Human Capital Management to show how this influences a broad range of people management practices and to warn against the danger of constraining the thinking to simply the question of measurement. Finally, Jon Ingham reflects the importance of people engagement in their organizations by adopting a number of techniques to help the reader engage in the book - such as dialogues at the beginning of each chapter to bring out the sense of direction in the narrative. Dominic Mahony UK HR Director O2 plc

Table of Contents

Part 1: Accounting for People; People management strategy dynamics; Best people management practices; Intangible capability through people; Creating value in people management; Managing and measuring human capital; Part 2: HCM strategy development; HCM measurement; HCM benchmarking; HCM implementation; HCM reporting; HCM roles and technology