Valuing human resources: perceptions and practices in UK organisations

Verma, Shraddha and Dewe, Philip (2009). Valuing human resources: perceptions and practices in UK organisations. Journal of Human Resource Costing & Accounting, 12(2) pp. 102–123.



Purpose – This research aims to explore perceptions and practices in the area of valuing human resources. It focuses on the importance of valuing human resources, current measurement practices, barriers to measurement and the progress expected in this field.

Design/methodology/approach – This research uses a survey questionnaire design to identify and describe perceptions and practices in valuing human resources in three types of UK organizations: traditional companies; knowledge intensive companies; and local authorities.

Findings – While the majority of respondents regarded the measurement of human resources as important to their organization, little or moderate progress was expected in measurement practices over the next few years. The main reasons for this included a lack of organizational support, uncertainties as to what should be reported, lack of precision in current measurement practices and sensitivities around what should be reported.

Research limitations/implications – A limitation was in identifying who in the organization should receive such a questionnaire in order to improve the response rate.

Practical implications – Organizations need to be made more aware of the benefits and strategic importance of measuring human resources particularly in an era of resource-based strategies – competing through people.

Originality/value – The paper highlights that by reporting the data descriptively it can be used as a context for considering what issues need to be resolved and what barriers need to be overcome to take measurement beyond just recognizing its importance.

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