Comparing HRM in the voluntary and public sectors

by Emma Parry, Clare Kelliher, Tim Mills, Shaun Tyson
Personnel Review ()
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Purpose – This paper aims to examine the practice of human resource management (HRM) in voluntary sector organisations providing substance misuse treatment services and to compare these findings with similar organisations in the public sector. Design/methodology/approach – HRM practices are examined using a survey of voluntary and public sector drug and alcohol treatment provider organisations. The survey data are supported with a number of case studies and qualitative interviews with the HR managers of such organisations. Findings – The data show that in many areas practice is broadly similar in the voluntary and public sectors. However, there are also a number of important differences, influenced by both their relative financial positions and the value-led nature of the voluntary sector. Originality/value – Recent estimates suggest that over half a million people are in paid employment in the UK voluntary sector; however, relatively little is known about HRM within this sector. This paper provides a valuable insight into HRM within this sector and highlights the similarities and differences between this and the public sector.

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