Human Resource Management

by Patrick Wright

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About the book

The 11th edition of Human Resource Management: Gaining a Competitive Advantage was written to teach sophomore and junior business majors how to strategically solve organizational difficulties and gain a competitive advantage for their firms. The writers of the text, who have received multiple important teaching and research honors, provide a learning program that is unique in its depth and breadth, as well as its current research and practice. All content and statistics have been entirely updated to reflect the most recent information in the field of human resource management (HRM).


There are five sections to the text:

•Part One discusses the external forces that organizations must contend with when attempting to leverage their human resources to create a competitive edge.
•Part Two focuses on human resource acquisition and preparation, including human resource (HR) strategy and recruitment, as well as selection and training.
•Part Three delves into how businesses can assess their employees' worth and use retention and development tactics to capitalize on their abilities.
•In Part Four, you'll learn how to reward and compensate human resources, including how to develop compensation structures (Chapter 11), recognize individual contributions (Chapter 12), and provide perks (Chapter 13). (Chapter 13).
•Special themes in HR management, such as labor-management relations, worldwide HRM, and strategically managing the HRM function, are covered in Part Five.


The edition features outstanding pedagogy:

•Chapter-opening vignettes have been updated to include relevant examples of real-world business difficulties. Students complete and evaluate their skills in self-assessment assignments.
•The expanding trend of demonstrating how human resources contributes to a company's competitive advantage is highlighted in the Evidence-Based HR sections.
•A Look Back, a section at the end of the chapter, encourages students to recall the chapter's opening tale and apply it to what they've just learned.
•Managing People examples examine situations and real companies, encouraging students to evaluate each challenge thoughtfully and apply chapter themes.
•Application exercises like Click and Drag, video cases, and case analyses help students to experience and grasp the relevance and application of HRM to their jobs and organizations.
•At the end of each chapter, there are Exercising Strategy cases that ask strategic questions based on real-world scenarios.
•Twenty different films cover subjects such as bullying, cyberloafing, office romance, and more in-depth.


This text has educational capabilities that are not present in other texts. Students, for example, observe real managers using their years of knowledge to unscripted challenges, then watch follow-up interviews with the managers to see if their reactions mirrored the managers' conclusions. Students can explore and apply HR ideas to a wide range of challenges using the questions provided in the materials.

About the Author

Patrick Wright is Thomas C. Vandiver Bicentennial Chair in the Darla Moore School of Business at the University of South Carolina. Prior to joining USC, he has served on the faculties at Cornell University, Texas A&M University, and the University of Notre Dame.


Professor Wright teaches, conducts research, and consults in the area of Strategic Human Resource Management (SHRM), particularly focusing on how firms use people as a source of competitive advantage and the changing nature of the Chief HR Officer role. He has published over 60 research articles in journals, over 20 chapters in books and edited volumes, and has co-authored two textbooks and two books on HR practice. He is the senior associate editor at the Journal of Management.


He has conducted programs and/or consulted for a number of large organizations. He currently serves as a member on the Board of Directors for the National Academy of Human Resources (NAHR) and is a former board member of HRPS, SHRM Foundation, and World at Work (formerly American Compensation Association). In both 2011 and 2012, he was named by HRM Magazine as one of the 20 “Most Influential Thought Leaders in HR”.



  • Ph.D., Business Administration, Michigan State University, 1988
  • MBA, Michigan State University, 1987
  • BA Psychology, Wheaton College, 1982

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