HR is failing to address the transition from traditional corporate structures to the network-based companies of the new economy.
Management guru Professor C K Prahalad told delegates at the CIPD conference in Harrogate today that HR was focusing on creating procedures and protocols suited to individual business units.
But the network-based company structure is destroying this traditional company paradigm, Prahalad claimed in his keynote address.
He said: "This is the paradox – we are moving away from individual units to a network. I find this is particularly true of HR in the UK."
Prahalad who is professor of business administration at Michigan University’s business school said middle management and HR must now fulfil the crucial role of assessing where the knowledge is in companies.
He said: "When people ask me what I think of middle management, I say it is the ham in the ham sandwich. Without the ham, it would just be two dry pieces of bread without any connection."
By Richard Staines