Scientific article
Open access

Investing in transferable strategic human capital through alliances in the luxury hotel industry

ContributorsFerrary, Michel
Published inJournal of Knowledge Management, vol. 19, no. 5, p. 1007-1028
First online date2015-04-01

he purpose of this paper is explore an organizational design that allows firms to invest in transferable strategic human capital. Strategic human capital requires considerable investment in training costs, effective compensation, opportunities for professional development and expectancy of long employment relationship within a firm. A firm can undertake investment in strategic knowledge and workers can engage in learning only in these circumstances. However, there are a number of risks that are associated with investment in strategic human capital within a firm. In this paper, the author argues that providing strategic human capital to other firms within alliances could be a strategy for leveraging resource. Strategic knowledge facilitates transactions between firms possessing co-specialized human capital and tangible resources. Organizational design of an alliance based on co-specialization allows to balance costs and returns for the human capital supplier, as well as for beneficiary and workers. Within an alliance, the human capital supplier provides workers to a beneficiary firm and coordinates their activities. Supplier specialized in human capital investment ensures improved performance, productivity and efficiency of workers. Possibility to form a greater pool of labor force and to centralize training allows optimizing cost and sharing risks associated with investment activity among alliance participants. Human resource practices in an alliance system foster long-term employment relationship. Entering an alliance increases number of job positions, professional development opportunities through horizontal mobility, promotion and learning opportunities for workers. Finally, alliances allow leveraging investment in human capital beyond a single organization.

  • Alliances
  • Knowledge management
  • Human resource management
Citation (ISO format)
FERRARY, Michel. Investing in transferable strategic human capital through alliances in the luxury hotel industry. In: Journal of Knowledge Management, 2015, vol. 19, n° 5, p. 1007–1028.
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Article (Published version)
  • PID : unige:165954

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