University of Twente Student Theses


Global talent management in Israel and the Netherlands : case study at IBM

Amstel, M.S. van (2011) Global talent management in Israel and the Netherlands : case study at IBM.

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Abstract:INTRODUCTION According to relevant literature, human resources, the personnel within the organization, are becoming more and more important to organizations. Therefore, multinational corporations are investing in global talent management systems. These systems are influenced by many national cultural differences. In this study these differences in and similarities of the global talent management systems of multinational corporations will be investigated by means of a comparison between Israel and the Netherlands. The Netherlands is one of the most postmodern countries of the world, whereas Israel is a more traditional yet western country. They have one important similarity: the small amount of natural resources. To overcome this, both countries invest in their human capital. DESIGN METHODOLOGY This research is a cross national comparison between Israel and the Netherlands on the topic of global talent management of MNCs. A quantitative research method is used to gain an in-depth understanding of the topic. This research is a case study at IBM, selected because it is a leading company with regard to global talent management. To obtain the data a triangulation method is used which includes semi-structured interviews, documentary analysis and a study of relevant literature. This data is analyzed and compared in a systematical way, using the best practices of Stahl et al. (2007). FINDINGS The talent management system of IBM Israel is based on the global talent management system of IBM and is called the business technical leadership system. In the BTL system of IBM Israel talents have an individual responsibility to take part in the development programs. IBM Israel did not implement their own unique system like IBM Netherlands did. The system of IBM Netherlands is designed in cooperation with Belgium and Luxembourg (Benelux) and it is funded by IBM Benelux. In this system all talents are developed to reach their full potential. The talents are actively sought out to join the system and to participate in the courses. Both countries use a talent pool strategy but in the Netherlands this is also used for succession purposes (replacements for senior positions). CONCLUSION This study uses institutional theory and resource based view to explain the differences in the global talent management systems of IBM Israel and IBM Netherlands. The most important difference between the systems is the individualistic approach by IBM Israel. This cannot be explained just by the institutional aspects of Israel. Given that the talent management system of IBM Israel was designed by IBM headquarters, one explanation could be that the Israeli system may be based on institutional aspects in the USA. Another difference according to the resource based view is how the physical resources are used in the Netherlands, specifically the money to fund the system. The processes chosen by IBM Netherlands allow the system to function and to lead to good results. The IBM Netherlands' system even yielded a surplus of talents for some positions. The talent management system of the Netherlands includes a talent management team that coordinates/arranges all aspects of the talent management system. They assign and reassign talents in the talent pool and in important positions in the organization. This creates a competitive advantage as IBM Netherlands ensures to have their talents at the most important positions in the company.
Item Type:Essay (Master)
Faculty:BMS: Behavioural, Management and Social Sciences
Subject:85 business administration, organizational science
Programme:Business Administration MSc (60644)
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