Date of Award


Document Type

Master Thesis

Degree Name

Master of Arts


Organisational and Professional Development

First Advisor

Dr Deirdre O'Donovan


The Implementation of a HR Shared Services model is a recently new phenomenon but is a very necessary one to enable HR to become a more cost-effective, customer-focused organisation that enables the other HR functions to support the ever-changing business units in a rapidly changing commercial world. Reilly and Williams (2003) state that HR has spent considerable time examining itself in light of the perception of it within the organisation as a value-add organisation, so this has led to a change in the way that HR delivers its services. The HR function is now at a crossroads as it has to show that it is a value-add organisation through maximising productivity and attracting and retaining top talent, or else it will find itself being perceived as a contract manager of activities requested by others. It is in this context that HR Shared Services has emerged. The purpose of this study is to gain a better understanding of the meaning and nature of HR Shared Services concepts across the globe within a multinational organisation by researching why companies go down the road of HR Shared Services in terms of benefits, pitfalls, and impact to the organisation and its employees. Most literature in the area of HR Shared Services is fairly recent so we will focus on recent authors to gain our insight, then we will focus our attention on why organisations implement Shared Services Models and the authors' experience around this process through implementation and also the insights of experts in other multinational organisations through surveys and analysis. Finally, the key research area will be to understand the primary driver for organisations around implementation of HR Shared Services and the issues they encounter when implementing. The author will also use his expert knowledge in contrasting the literature and the research, and comparing this to the current organisation he works for, HR Corp.

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