Inderscience Publishers

Is the resource-based "view" a useful perspective for SHRM research? The case of the video game industry

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The purpose of this paper is to present the results of an exploratory empirical research carried out in 2001–2002, amongst 20 firms in the French video game industry. The objective of this research was to analyse the SHRM of these companies and to test the relevance of the Resource Based View of the firm, which states that Human Resources are all the more crucial for a given firm as they are specific, non imitable and socially complex (Coff, R. (1997) Academy of Management Review, Vol. 22, No. 2, pp.374–402). On the basis of semi-directive interviews of HR operators, the stake was to characterise the HR practices of each company in connection with its strategy and development stage. We thus obtained a snapshot of SHRM's various profiles existing in this sector. We further analyse the possible rationales to explain a paradoxical finding: video games companies, as they grow, tend to get rid of their specific, socially complex and causally ambiguous assets (namely the creative skills) in favour of more generic set of skills (namely, the management skills).

Keywords: SHRM, resource based view, video games, France, human capital, strategic HRM, human resources management

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