High-Performance Working (HPW)
Table of Contents
The paper comprehensively analyses the concept of high-performance work and its relation to high-performance work organization. The focus of the concept revolves on advancing the organizational efforts on employee motivation to improve productivity and performance. The achievement of enhanced competitiveness of an organization is influenced by employee efficiency and effectiveness. Therefore, the paper analyses feature such as leadership, employee attitudes, and performance management cycle. Also, evaluation of the barriers to high performance work, performance management process contribution, and key recommendations on how to advance the efficacy of high performance work principles in an organization.
The high-performance working (HPW) comprises of an approach in which managers in an organization focus on achieving the organizational goals by stimulating employee competitiveness, commitment, and involvement towards high levels of performance (Belt and Giles, 2009). The use of HPW by the managers in an organization enhances the managerial skills and induce viable culture geared towards high productivity and sustained competitiveness. The HPW ascertains the proper functioning of the organization without overburdening and causing negative attitudes on the employees (Wood et al., 2013). The success measures of the HPW functionalities in an organization create high-performance work systems (HPWS) that improve the functionalities of the human resource (HR) practices within the organization (Grant and Maxwell, 2018). For instance, Figure. 1 advances employee performance through strengthening of selection, training, employee development, performance appraisal, and better compensation packages lead to employee motivation, commitment, and effectiveness. Thus, High-Performance Working Organization (HPWO) culture can be created by establishing employee loyalty, accountability, and transparency leading to the attainment of high competitive advantage and development (Wibowo, Wulandri and Yunanto, 2019).
Figure. 1: High Performance Work Systems. (Source: CEO Vietnam, 2020).
The key components of HPW enhance managerial skills impacting on the achievement of high-level HPWO functionalities and culture. The HPWO culture is fundamental for the long-term performance and competitiveness of an organization in any industry (García-Chas, Neira-Fontela, and Varela-Neira, 2016). The HPWO culture outlines measures which enable the employees to operate smoothly through enhanced efficiency, competence, and capacity to execute their mandates in their workplace. Therefore, the key components that enable the realization of HPW and HPWO can be analysed as follows (Figure 2.).
Figure 2: Key Components of HPW (Source: Author).
The leadership and strategy aspect of the HPW is fundamental in the achievement of a highly competitive HPWO culture. The leaders provide the necessary mechanism and guidance to the employees within the firm. Through effective leadership, strategic planning and operations can be formulated in the form of vision and mission of the organization (Zhang et al., 2018). These give the firm and its staff members a sense of purpose and long-term objectives in which the HR practices, resources, and commitments are streamlined towards the achievement of the objectives. This is vital in building the firm’s capacity and achieve effective leadership, which influence employee commitment toward the organization and encourage creativity, innovativeness, and competitiveness.
In order to achieve high objectives of the HPW, information plays an integral role in the employees’ functionality, attitude, and commitment to the organization. The HPW outlines key measures such as access to company’s information to ascertain the understanding of the organization’s strategic objectives, purposes, and role in the industry (Boxall and Huo, 2019). In turn, employee commitment to the realization of the set objectives is championed on moulded strategies and work values set within the firm. Thus, the HPWO can be efficiently attained an enhanced basis of the employee being the model of the organization and respective industry.
The organizational development impacts on the HPW by enhancing effectiveness and efficiency within the organization (Wibowo, Wulandari and Yunanto, 2019). The organizational development is based on the expansion of policies, adoption of change to increase competitiveness, realignment of job design to suit current organizational operations, and improvement of leadership. Organizational development enhances the utilization of the organization’s resources effectively as an approach towards increasing the overall productivity and efficiency (Zhu, Liu and Chen, 2018). The epitome of organization development leading to the realization of the HPWO objectives revolves around building the capacity of solving problems. Hence, it enables the organization to find effective solutions that lead to the competitiveness of the organization and the satisfaction of both the employees and the consumers.
The self-directed teams provide a favorable environment for the thriving of the HPW. The HPWO is attained through the establishment of self-directed teams that emphasize the value of work delegation and trusting the employees to complete their tasks successfully. The sense of self-drive motivates the employees towards more commitment and loyalty to the organization (Özçelik, Aybas, and Uyargil, 2016). As well, self-directive allows the employees to initiate competitive measures. Thereby being part and parcel of the organizational development, transformations, and competitiveness.
The involvement of employees in strategic functioning, decision making, and initiation of change creates the opportunity to take an active role in the organization. The active role of the employees eliminates the chance to be a passive employee that can undervalue the importance of the employee in the organization (Tang, Yu, Cooke and Chen, 2017). Through employee involvement, value creation towards employee commitment, loyalty, and increased competitiveness are advanced in the organization. Thus, enhanced performance and productivity can be attained through employee-driven processes.
The reward system in the organization creates a positive impact on the employees. The reward system serves as a way of recognizing and showing appreciation towards the employee’s values to the organization (Özçelik, Aybas, and Uyargil, 2016). Employees are a strategic asset to the organization, which must be nurtured, nourished, and motivated from time to time. This culminates in the commitment and efficiency of the employees. Thus, the realization of HPW and HPWO is possible with satisfied, committed, and valued employees.
The HPW thrives in a situation where employees are given clear and honest feedback. The managers’ honest evaluation of the employees is vital to create the development patterns of the employees and their contribution to the organization. The performance appraisal assessment evaluates the employees’ functionalities, performance and production capacity, and merit (Zhang et al., 2018). This gives the employees an opportunity for career development through promotion to higher positions. Performance appraisal is built over time, and every employee creates the value of having a better performance record.
Communication is critical in building a positive relationship between the employees and the managers in an organization. The capacity to maintain cooperation and positive attitudes towards the managers and the organization is based on effective communication. The application of effective communication leads to an understanding of the organization’s objectives and strategic goals (Wood et al., 2013). Also, clear communication provides an environment for employee involvement and understanding of the duties and responsibilities of the organization. The success of HPW depends on the capacity to positively engage the employees, establish healthy relationships, and create cooperation among the employees and the managers.
Figure 3: Links Between HPW and Key Features that Determine the Performance of the Organization (Source: Author).
Sustained organizational performance is integral to the continued productivity and efficiency of an organization. The efforts to achieve sustained organizational performance revolve on creating an environment that encourages creativity and innovativeness (Osborne and Hammoud, 2017). The sustainability aspect that facilitates organizational performance revolves around the quality performance of the employees, better financial management, and social developments that influence organizational culture and social responsibility of the organization. Hence, it positively impacts on the quality and high standard functionalities of the organization. This creates the reputation of HPW and HPWO that directs continued competitiveness and growth of an organization. The sustained organizational performance to sustain HPW and HPWO is attained through increased efficiency and effectiveness of the leadership, employee engagement, and organizational development (Amoatemaa and Kyeremeh, 2016).
The HPW caters to the employee’s well-being through increased commitment towards the plight and welfare of the employees in an organization. For example, an organization to see that employees are appreciated annually on a yearly event that brings all the employees together for the recognition and rewarding of employees that have exemplified high performance and productivity (Osborne and Hammoud, 2017). The HPW provides the mechanisms that enable the creation of an environment that ascertains employee and job satisfaction. The capacity to reduce employee problems, stress, and address their welfare enables a continued performance and positive impacts on the organization.
According to Abdullah, Shonubi, Hashim, and Hamid (2016), employees who feel recognized and appreciated in an organization tend to show commitments and productivity in an organization. The commitment of the organization towards the employees is integral to the subsequent performance and productivity of respective employees and the organization in general. Therefore, employees should be provided with a serene environment that sustains their productivity in an organization (Amoatemaa and Kyeremeh, 2016).
The HPW directly impacts on the competitive advantage of an organization. The availability of a motivated workforce, high performance, and productivity in an organization is ascertained. HPW enables the productivity and competitive advantage of an organization through having a diversified workforce, strengthened, empowered, and committed to attaining high results (Zhu, Liu and Chen, 2018). The commitment and loyalty of the employees serve a critical role in advancing the competitiveness of an organization. The prevalence of a happy, contented, and satisfied workforce guarantees high productivity (Durany, 2016). Thus, HPW outlines the framework empowers the employees in order to achieve a competitive advantage through creativity and innovativeness in satisfying the customer needs and requirements (Miao, Zhou, Xie and Wang, 2014).
The capacity to maintain a high positive mentality and employee attitude is fundamental to the growth of an organization. The HPW emphasizes the value of employee engagement and involvement in critical decision making (Wang, Wang, and Liu, 2018). This makes the employees own the change process, creativity, and innovativeness, as well as operational processes. In turn, employees who feel like part of the organization and view it in a positive mentality and maintain a positive attitude take more responsibility vital to the improvement of the quality and competitiveness of the products and services (Elrehail et al., 2019). Such employees take more initiatives that are essential to driving innovations and an increase in the competitiveness of the organization (Thapliyal and Kumari, 2019). Thus HPW objectives are met through positive employee attitudes.
The cooperation of the employees in an organization is fundamental to the performance and productivity of an organization. The HPW stipulates the importance of cooperation in an organization. The internal cooperation supports the employees’ relationship with each other and between the managers and their subordinates. This impacts positive growth as employees can build each (Lee, Kim, Lee, and Moon, 2019). As well, it affects the level of trust among the employees, impacting the productivity of the organization. The external cooperation improves the organization’s relationship with the suppliers, partners, and affiliate companies (Nadeem, Biaz and Danish, 2019). These are fundamental aspects that affect the reputation of the organization. Thus, HPW enabling cooperation both internally and externally, is crucial to the productivity of the organization.
Despite the enormous benefits generated by the application of HPW values and principles in an organization, several barriers impede its functionality and effectiveness (Figure 4.). The barriers undermine the functionality of the employees in an organization.
Figure 4: Main Barriers to HPW (Source: Author).
The negative attitudes towards changes increase the rates of employee resistance. The resistance of the employees towards changes undermines the organization’s capacity to enhance its competitiveness in the contemporary corporate world (Zhang et al., 2018). The employee resistance increases the chances of the turnover rates that induces enormous costs on the organization. Turnover rates prompt the organization to lose core talents, expertise, and competence. Thus, undermine the productivity and competitiveness of the organization.
The absence of trust adversely affects the team efficiency, quality, and productivity. It is very difficult for a team that does not trust one another to cooperate or function on shared goals and objectives (Özçelik, Aybas, and Uyargil, 2016). There is a high likelihood of unhealthy competition characterized by jealousy, sabotage, and opportunistic functioning. The environment does not support the cooperation and coordination of the teams to function towards enhancing the interests of the organization; rather, respective individuals pursue personal goals. This creates a culture where conflicts are likely to manifest in the organization, undermining the functionality of the employees.
The lack of understanding among the employees and between the employees and the managers creates confusion in the organization. Confusion makes it difficult to pursue any objective as employees lack the comprehension of what is required. This presents a leadership failure to coordinate the employees towards productiveness and effective functioning (White, Eklund, McNeal, Hochhalter, and Arroliga, 2018). The lack of proper mechanisms to create proper and understanding in the organization undermines the operational capacity of the organization. Thus, it remains unproductive and remains ineffective in its operations. Therefore, it impedes the employee functioning of the organization.
The middle managers serve as the intermediaries at different levels within an organization. The middle managers coordinate operations and communication from top to bottom and vis-à-vis in an organization. HPW stipulates the value of effective communication across all levels of an organization. The achievement of effective communication facilitates smooth operations and cooperation within an organization (Thapliyal and Kumari, 2019). The failure of the middle managers to effectively articulate the objectives and goals of their departments affects the overall performance of an organization. The existence of an ineffective and inefficient middle management deters the organizational capacity to pursue competitive objectives and attain continued innovativeness and creativity.
Communication is an integral HPW component. The existence of effective communication creates awareness of the organizational objectives, goals, and vision among the employees, impacting the functionality of the organization. Also, effective communication is fundamental to create a positive relationship between the managers and employees in an organization (Lee, Kim, Lee, and Moon, 2019). The prevalence of poor communication undermines the potential of the managers and erodes their relationship with the employees. Poor communication makes it impossible to build employee capacity and competence. Thus, it poses a profound barrier to the efficiency and effectiveness of the HPW functionalities in an organization.
A performance management cycle is a valuable tool that is critical to the realization of the organizational competitive advantage and success. The performance management cycle enables the organization to maintain effective communication between the employers and the managers throughout the year. The performance management cycle primarily focuses on the performance capacity of the employees to provide the necessary support essential to advance the organization’s vision, objectives, mission, and strategies (Nxumalo, Goudge, Gilson, and Eyles, 2018). Thus, it plays an integral role in the employee performance and provision of the necessary support from the managers/supervisors. Hence, the impact on increased performance, productivity, and competitiveness of an organization.
The performance management cycle has five key stages that impact on its capacity to enhance the performance and achievement of objectives successfully (Figure 5.). The stages create a conducive environment in which the employees and the managers can cooperate and build capacity for high performance and productivity in the organization.
Figure 5: Performance Management Cycle (Source: Author).
The planning phase enables the managers to set the performance expectations and goals for the teams and employees in an organization. The teams and employees focus on the performance expectations and goals to ensure their efforts and commitments are intended towards the realization of the set organizational objectives (Lin and Lee, 2011). The planning phase identifies key talents and expertise and aligns them with strategic objectives. The capacity to successfully align strategic objectives to the necessary talents and expertise profoundly impacts the capacity to achieve excellent results (Helden, Johnsen, and Vakkuri, 2012). For example, to attain technological innovations in an organization – relevant educational and experience background is vital to achieving the specific objective. This is enhanced by technical expertise and knowledge, which positively enhances the capacity of the employees.
The monitoring phase enhances continued measuring and assessment of the performance. The stage provides ongoing feedback to the employees’ capacity to achieve the set objectives. In turn, the approach builds the capacity of the employees at the early stages to ensure there is uniformity progress across the organization. This is fundamental to ascertain high competitiveness without some departments and employees lagging behind.
The phase provides the managers with an opportunity to identify employee training and development needs. This informs the formulation of a personalized development plan to enhance the strengths and skills of an employee for the overall benefit of the organization (DeNisi and Murphy, 2017). Also, the approach is crucial to affirm the alignment of talent and skills with the necessary strategic objective. As well, addressing the weaknesses of the employees is fundamental to limit the potential adverse effects that can induce performance capacity. Hence, crucial for the continued performance of the employees in an organization.
The periodical reviews examine the achievements that have been made over time. The phase ascertains the realization of the milestones and facilitates the employees and the organization to remain on track for completion of the strategic plans (DeNisi and Murphy, 2017). This is critical to maintaining operations and functionalities within the budget and stipulated time frame.
The rewarding of excellent performance at different stages motivates the employees to exemplify in their functionalities in the organization. This is crucial to enhance the commitment and loyalty of the employees to the organization and tasks assigned (DeNisi and Murphy, 2017). The rewarding of excellent performance serves as an example of appreciation of the employee’s sacrifices and commitment to the high performance of the organization.
The line manager plays a fundamental role in the performance review process, enhancing its effectiveness and value in the organization. The line managers serve as the direct link between the employees and high-ranking managers in an organization. The line managers oversee operations and employee performance and report the findings to a higher-ranking manager (Van Waeyenberg and Decramer, 2018). These are critical aspects of the continued productivity and performance of the employees. The line managers comprise the supervisors, forepersons, section leader, and team leader.
The line managers, as the team leaders of specific subgroups and departments with the organization, have a direct understanding of every employee under their command (Bos-Nehless, Van Der Heijden, Riemsdijk, and Looise, 2019). This enables the identification of the training needs of the respective employees. Thus, to ensure continued performance and achievement of the HPW objectives – training in the organization is based on the employee needs to enhance their performance and production capacity.
The involvement of line managers in processes and documentation is fundamental to building the competence of the employees. As they are involved in the day-to-day activities of the organization – they have a better understanding of the processes in the organization (Tweedie, Wild, Rhodes, and Martinoy-Bennie, 2019). Hence, documentation provides an analysis of the best practices that can be utilized for the achievement of the highest results.
The line managers provide first-hand mentoring to the employees in their departments. This follows the continued monitoring of the employees’ functional abilities and skills (Dupont and Eskerod, 2016). The line managers enable respective employees to build their skills over time to improve on their functional capability in the organization. This is fundamental to ascertain high competitiveness among the employees. Hence, it encourages positive growth of every employee in the department.
The continued monitoring of the operating systems and processes within the organization creates a more in-depth understanding among the line managers on the strengths and deficits of the systems. This is critical to offer crucial feedback that can be utilized to enhance the operational capacity of the systems. In turn, provide support to the employees (Cappelli and Conyon, 2018). For example, the continued monitoring of the existing technology applied in an organization by the line managers leads to an understanding of the deficits, weakness points, and vulnerabilities. As a result of deep understanding of the systems and processes – line managers canBrewster and Soderstrom, 2017)
The performance management processes in an organization impact profoundly on the functionality and competitiveness of the systems. In turn, it enables the improvement of the operational capacity and strategic positioning of the organization. The performance management processes provide a broad approach to which employees serve as a critical asset to the organization (Tweedie, Wild, Rhodes, and Martinoy-Bennie, 2019). The HR practices are focused on ascertaining the high performance and competitiveness of the employees. Thus, effective performance management processes impact positively on the organization by building its capabilities to be unique in the respective industry (Figure 6.).
The extensive evaluation and assessment created by the performance management processes enable the promotion of challenges by providing viable solutions. The extensive reviews impact on the identification of the challenges that affect employee productivity and operational capacity. Solutions can be developed to address the particular challenge and overturn results in the organization.
The provisions of employee training and development informed by the employee’s needs and assessment of different departments culminate in building future people’s capacity. This is attained through the continuity of the employees, where regular evaluations and assessments inform training and development approaches in an organization (DeNisi and Murphy, 2017).
The recognition of achievement, god performance, and stipulation of rewards are attained through the performance appraisal reviews. The performance appraisal keeps a track record of the employee functionalities and achievements in an organization. Hence, rewards are based on merit and productiveness.
Figure 6: Employee Performance as a Process (Source: Thanai, 2018).
The achievement of high-performance working culture is embedded in the capacity of the organization to motivate the employees. The capacity to build trust is crucial to facilitate the commitment, loyalty, enthusiasm, and value creation among the employees. The promotion of self-drive promotes the importance of the employees committing themselves to the organization. High performance working culture sets a precedent whereby employees remain focused on the realization of the strategic objectives of the organization and have the necessary capacity and capability to achieve the set goals.
The ability to operate based on vision and missions enables the organization to focus all its resources and efforts towards particular objectives. This avoids confusion and unnecessary spending. Furthermore, it encourages employees to work harder for the achievement of a higher purpose.
Inclusivity enables the employees to feel like they are part of the organization. The inclusivity of the employees in key decision making builds a relationship of trust, positivity, and commitment (Lee, Kim, Lee and Moon, 2019). The implementation of inclusivity assures the employees of their continued value and worth in the organization. Thus, it proves to be critical in advancing strategic initiatives and creativity in the organization.
Promoting communication enables to bridge the gap between the employees and the managers. This impacts the establishment of a good relationship molded on trust and respect for each other. In turn, it enables the two levels to cooperate and improve the productivity of the organization. Also, communication is key to deliberate on the vision, mission, and strategic objectives of the organization. Hence, create shared goals for the organization.
The utilization of training is key to building the skills, competence, and capacity of the employees to be productive effectively. The training addresses both strengths and weaknesses of the employees (Durany, 2016). Thus, the impact on increased performance and productivity capacity.
Coaching and mentoring are vital in enhancing the performance of the employees. This provides the necessary guidance to the employees to understand their functions and how to execute them (Durany, 2016). Hence, build skills and competence. As well, coaching and mentoring build a positive relationship between the employees and the managers. Thus, create a strong HPW culture.
A culture of motivating the employees is vital to show value, recognition, and appreciation of the employees’ contribution to the organization. As a key entity of the organization – employees are bound to improve on their commitment, loyalty, and self-driven performance. Thus, ascertain high performance and employee retention.
The High-Performance Working framework is integral to facilitate the increased performance, productivity, and competitiveness of both the respective individuals and the organization in general. Managers have a fundamental role in ascertaining the employees work in the most conducive environment. This is critical for the environmental to ascertain the conduciveness and comfort of employees to improve the productivity. The approaches that the managers choose to direct, lead, and delegate roles in an organization are integral to the performance of the organization. Therefore, to achieve a high-performance working organization key HPW components and strategies must be applied. Thus, provide an environment of competitiveness among the employees and the managers.
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