From policy to practice : what is the role of strategic human resource management in the internationalizing Irish dairy industry

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Fitzsimons, Edward
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MBA in Human Resource Management
Dublin Business School
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In the European Union under the Common Agricultural Policy (CAP) milk production was restricted by milk quotas since 1984. However, due to recent changes in the Common Agricultural Policy (CAP), milk quotas were abolished in March 2015. Therefore the European dairy sector now faces the opportunity, for the first time in a generation, to expand. Several studies have been carried out which predict that milk production in Ireland will significantly increase post quotas (Laepple and Hennessy (2010), Donnellan and Hennessy (2007) and Lips and Reidner (2005)). The research in this thesis explored the challenges faced by human resource divisions during the growth of the industry to a global level. In this study a human resource model was developed for the Irish dairy industry outlining what would be the best practice approach for human resource divisions to enact human resource policies relative to their stage of internationalisation. This is particularly relevant as the demands facing human resources within the dairy industry continues to grow due to continuous expansion until 2020. Comparatives have been drawn between three prominent Irish dairy organisations and a best practice approach has been concluded. It is hoped that the results of this thesis will help improve the decision making process around the changes that are currently occurring in the human resources departments of the Irish dairy sector. There has been little research conducted around the relevance of human resources within the Irish dairy sector which makes this body of study particularly relevant to the operations of an industry that is undergoing significant change. Author Keywords: Human Resources, Organisational strategy, Irish dairy industry, corporate culture, International Management