Organizational and regional influences on the adoption of high-involvement human resource systems in China: evidence from service establishments

Can Ouyang, Xiangmin Liu, Zhengtang Zhang

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

4 Scopus citations


While a number of studies examined the mechanisms that link high-involvement human resource systems (HIHRS) to organizational performance, few have systematically explained why the adoption of such systems remains limited. Based on a national sample of 247 call center establishments in China, this study investigates an array of organizational and regional characteristics and their impact on the adoption of HIHRS. Our results indicate several findings. First, foreign-invested and local state-owned companies are more likely to adopt HIHRS than private businesses. Second, non-listed firms and those listed on foreign stock exchanges adopt HIHRS more than those listed on Chinese stock exchanges. Third, firms serving high-value customer segments and a large geographic coverage are more likely to adopt HIHRS than those serving low-value, local customers. Last, regional differences moderate the effects of ownership identities and stock market listings on the adoption of HIHRS. Specifically, local state-owned enterprises and private businesses in coastal provinces bear more similarities in adopting HIHRS than they do in inland provinces. We also find that companies listed in Chinese stock markets are more similar to non-listed companies in coastal provinces than in inland provinces.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)2058-2074
Number of pages17
JournalInternational Journal of Human Resource Management
Issue number18
Publication statusPublished - Oct 10 2016


All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Strategy and Management
  • Organizational Behavior and Human Resource Management
  • Management of Technology and Innovation

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