MSc International Human Resource Management and Comparative Industrial Relations

Year of entry: 2022

Coronavirus information for applicants and offer-holders

We understand that prospective students and offer-holders may have concerns about the ongoing coronavirus outbreak. The University is following the advice from Universities UK, Public Health England and the Foreign and Commonwealth Office.

Read our latest coronavirus information

Course unit details:
HRM: Strategy and Practice

Course unit fact file
Unit code BMAN70231
Credit rating 15
Unit level FHEQ level 7 – master's degree or fourth year of an integrated master's degree
Teaching period(s) Semester 1
Offered by Alliance Manchester Business School
Available as a free choice unit? No


In recent years, there has been much discussion in both academic and practitioner circles about the links between competitive advantage, the development of employees as “resourceful humans”, and the contribution of human resource management to performance. We draw on contemporary academic research and organisational practice, both in the UK and in other countries to explore this contribution. Underlying the unit is a desire to review critically the argument that employers are seeking to find ways in which to (a) integrate different HR practices with each other and with other aspects of their business/strategy, and (b) develop workers as a source of competitive advantage.



BMAN70231 Programme Req: BMAN70231 is only available as a core unit to students on MSc HRM & IR and MSc IHRM & CIR


The aim of this course unit is to understand debates about the contribution of HRM to performance, seen in the broadest terms as including worker well-being and fairness as well as profit, product quality and customer service.


Learning outcomes

 At the end of the course unit students should be able to:

  • Understand and explain
    • The links between strategy and human resource management, focusing in particular on models of HRM from the best practice/high commitment, best fit/contingency and RBV traditions.
    • The contribution which line managers and HR specialists can and do make to HRM and organisational performance/sustained competitive advantage.
    • The ways in which key HR issues – such as recruitment and selection, skill development, performance management, and employee involvement and participation – are practised strategically in employing organisations.
  • Assess the ways in which human resource management is influenced and shaped by factors both internal and external to the employing organisation.
  • Identify the way in which different components of HRM (as identified above), line managers and the HR function can contribute to organisational performance and fair treatment at work.
  • Provide advice on the application of different HR practices in employing organisations.
  • Practise the skills of collecting data, presenting information
  • Practice group working skills.

Assessment methods

Coursework essay of 3000 words (100%)

Feedback methods

Informal advice and discussion during lectures and seminars. Responses to student emails.

Written and/or verbal comments after students have given a group or individual presentation


Recommended reading

Marchington M and Wilkinson A (2008, 2012, 2016), Human Resource Management at Work, CIPD, Eds, 4th, 5th, or 6th.

Readings are recommended for each lecture and seminar.



Study hours

Scheduled activity hours
Lectures 20
Seminars 10
Independent study hours
Independent study 120

Teaching staff

Staff member Role
Jenny Rodriguez Unit coordinator

Additional notes

Informal contact methods

Office hours


Return to course details