The business case for diversity management

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Fitzgerald, Norma
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MA Human Resource Management
Dublin Business School
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Historically, Ireland has never been any major destination for immigration. Up until the mid 1990's Ireland was a relatively poor peripheral European country with strong and sustained emigration, limited employment opportunities and no traditional ties to a majority of world countries. Porter, (1995) writes that traditionally Ireland had been perceived as the "Human Warehouse of Europe". The CSO reported that in 1988 - 1989 alone, 70,600 persons or approximately 2% of the population left the country to seek employment elsewhere. In the past, Ireland has always been perceived as a mono-cultural society and as a country of emigration, rather than immigration. In recent years, the Irish economy has enjoyed one of its healthiest periods since the foundations of the state. Ireland experienced an era of sustained an unprecedented economic growth, placing it among the top twenty wealthiest and most developed nations in the world. Consequently Ireland 's demographics have dramatically changed. When one considers the severity of the labour shortage crisis that exists in the Irish Market the rational for understanding and managing diversity has never been stronger. With this in mind, the focus of the research in this dissertation will be to examine how this new multi-cultural workforce has impacted on the Hotel Industry in Ireland. The hypothesis will be to demonstrate that: "Effectively managing diversity can lead to a more efficient and innovative organisation and thus lead to a sustainable competitive advantage. " Therefore the main objectives of the research project will be as follows; • To outline and explain the key works, theories and concepts that have been written on the concept of Managing Diversity • To identify the potential benefits that the effective management of diversity can bring to an organisation. • To demonstrate how adopting Diversity Management as a strategic management process, will aid organisations in gaining and sustaining competitive advantage in today's dynamic global marketplace. • To conduct primary research within the selected hotel, 'Hotel X' ) • To make recommendations for change at 'Hotel X' ) Chapter Outline The structure of this dissertation is based on six chapters. The first two chapters will carry out a critical review on the literature written on the subject diversity management. The third chapter will deal with the research methodology. The fourth, will illustrate the main findings from the primary research conducted in 'Hotel X' . The fifth chapter will carry out a discussion and an interpretation on the main research findings. Finally, the last chapter will conclude this thesis by presenting the key recommendations that will enable organisations in the Irish Hotel Industry to achieve competitive advantage in today's dynamic global marketplace.