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Strategic human resource management

This module is designed to meet the needs of managers who wish to understand and be able to influence decisions regarding the management of human resources within organisations. It considers the different aspects of human resource management at a strategic level in the organisation and how this differs from the more operationally-focused personnel management. You will work collaboratively with others on strategic human resource management (SHRM) issues and problems and find, review and evaluate information relevant to key aspects of SHRM in your own professional context.

Qualifications

BB845 is an optional module in our:

Some postgraduate qualifications allow study to be chosen from other subject areas. We advise you to refer to the relevant qualification descriptions for information on the circumstances in which this module can count towards these qualifications because from time to time the structure and requirements may change. 

Postgraduate Loans 

If you study this module as part of an eligible qualification, you may also be eligible for a Postgraduate Loan available from Student Finance England. For more information, see Fees and funding.

Excluded combinations

Sometimes you will not be able to count a module towards a qualification if you have already taken another module with similar content. To check any excluded combinations relating to this module, visit our excluded combination finder or check with an adviser before registering.

Module

Module code
BB845
Credits

Credits

  • Credits measure the student workload required for the successful completion of a module or qualification.
  • One credit represents about 10 hours of study over the duration of the course.
  • You are awarded credits after you have successfully completed a module.
  • For example, if you study a 60-credit module and successfully pass it, you will be awarded 60 credits.
15
Study level
OU Postgraduate
SCQF 11
FHEQ 7
Study method
Distance learning
Find out more in Why the OU?
Module cost
See Module registration
Entry requirements

Find out more about entry requirements.

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What you will study

The outline content of the module is as follows:

  • an introduction to the theory and practice of strategic human resource management (SHRM)
  • managing employee performance
  • building employee engagement
  • the ethics of managing people
  • international aspects of SHRM
  • evaluating HR policies and practices
  • the future of HRM and work.

The nature and function of the human resource management (HRM) department and how it is implemented all depend on the culture and structure of the organisation and the priority given to ‘people’ issues. In this module the different factors, local and international that can influence SHRM decisions are considered.

You will explore the premise that the astute management of people can improve competitive performance. In addition to developing strategic thinking about HRM policies and issues, BB845 is designed - through media such as learning activities, online collaboration and readings - to encourage you to engage critically with both theory and practice. Our aim is to promote reflection and, through practice-based and online learning, enable you to both understand and influence SHRM.

By the end of the module you will be able to:

  • articulate and evaluate the ideas, principles and issues that are central to SHRM
  • draw appropriately on theories, models and case studies in the area of SHRM and compare and contrast their use in organisational practice
  • critically appraise examples and ‘solutions’ for the management of people
  • think creatively about the different dimensions of SHRM and how they impact upon each other and upon the business
  • appreciate the internal and external factors which can affect people management strategies
  • anticipate some of the changes in work and organisations that will impact upon the HRM function into the future
  • work collaboratively with others and engage in debates and discussions about SHRM
  • find, review and evaluate a variety of information relevant to topics in SHRM
  • compile reports that are robust in both intellect and practice-relevant terms
  • make appropriate use of ICT.

Teaching and assessment

Support from your tutor

You will have a tutor who will help you with the study material and mark and comment on your assignments and whom you can ask for advice and guidance. You will contact your tutor by telephone, email or via your tutor group forum on the BB845 website.

Contact us if you want to know more about study with The Open University before you register.

Assessment

The assessment details can be found in the facts box above.

You must use the online eTMA system to submit your tutor-marked assignment (TMA) and end-of-module assessment (EMA).

Course work includes

1 Tutor-marked assignment (TMA)
End-of-module assessment
No residential school

Future availability

Strategic human resource management starts twice a year – in May and November. This page describes the module that will start in November 2018 and May 2019. We expect it to start for the last time in November 2019.

Regulations

As a student of The Open University, you should be aware of the content of the academic regulations which are available on our Essential Documents website.

    Entry requirements

    You will need to have already completed MBA stage 1: management: perspectives and practice (B716). Your first module in Stage 2 of the MBA will be the compulsory module The dynamics of strategy (BB835). The next module you must study is Corporate finance (BB831), although you may choose to study an elective module alongside this 15 credits of compulsory finance study.

    Alternatively it is possible to study this module on a standalone basis. You will need to ensure that you have the knowledge and experience to study at postgraduate level. Please note that if you wish to study towards a qualification at a later date you must meet the entry requirements for that qualification.

    The module requires 150 hours of study over six months.

    You will also need an appropriate facility in English language, sufficient to be able to work effectively at postgraduate level; generally this means capability equivalent to an International English Language Test System (IELTS) score of 6.5. To assess your English language skills in relation to your proposed studies you can visit the IELTS website. If you are unsure whether your skill level in English is adequate you may find it helpful to look at our Skills for OU Study site.

    If you have any doubt about the suitability of the module, please speak to an adviser.

    Register

    Start End England fee Register
    03 Nov 2018 Apr 2019 £1450.00

    Registration closes 18/10/18 (places subject to availability)

    Register
    04 May 2019 Oct 2019 £1450.00

    Registration closes 18/04/19 (places subject to availability)

    Register
    This module is expected to start for the last time in November 2019.

    Future availability

    Strategic human resource management starts twice a year – in May and November. This page describes the module that will start in November 2018 and May 2019. We expect it to start for the last time in November 2019.

    Additional costs

    Study costs

    There may be extra costs on top of the tuition fee, such as a laptop, travel to tutorials, set books and internet access.

    Ways to pay

    We know there’s a lot to think about when choosing to study, not least how much it’s going to cost and how you can pay.

    That’s why we keep our fees as low as possible and offer a range of flexible payment and funding options. To find out more see Fees and funding.

    Study materials

    What's included

    An extensive variety of specially-written resources presented in different media (print and online) and designed exclusively for this module, audio-visual material, published articles, case-studies, a set of interactive tools to help you develop your management thinking abilities and access to The Open University library.

    Computing requirements

    A computing device with a browser and broadband internet access is required for this module.  Any modern browser will be suitable for most computer activities. Functionality may be limited on mobile devices.

    Any additional software will be provided, or is generally freely available. However, some activities may have more specific requirements. For this reason, you will need to be able to install and run additional software on a device that meets the requirements below.

    A desktop or laptop computer with either:

    • Windows 7 or higher
    • macOS 10.7 or higher

    The screen of the device must have a resolution of at least 1024 pixels horizontally and 768 pixels vertically.

    To participate in our online-discussion area you will need both a microphone and speakers/headphones. 

    Our Skills for OU study website has further information including computing skills for study, computer security, acquiring a computer and Microsoft software offers for students. 

    If you have a disability

    Elements of this module are delivered online and include the use of real-time online discussions and an interactive whiteboard space; consequently time spent using a computer and the internet will be extensive. If you use assistive technology or have a hearing or speech impairment and have concerns about accessing this type of virtual environment and materials you can visit the system provider's website for information and contact The Open University to discuss it further before registering.

    Written transcripts of any audio components and Adobe Portable Document Format (PDF) versions of printed material are available. Some Adobe PDF components may not be available or fully accessible using a screen reader. Alternative formats of the study materials may be available in the future.

    If you have particular study requirements please tell us as soon as possible, as some of our support services may take several weeks to arrange. Find out more about our services for disabled students.