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date: 17 September 2021

Abstract and Keywords

This article addresses the question of how modern firms obtain the human capital they need. It focuses on how workforce recruitment and hiring practices have changed since approximately the late 1980s, as firms, driven by external forces to improve efficiency and increase flexibility, have responded by flattening hierarchies, downsizing, and making greater use of external labour markets. The article identifies four key features of these strategic shifts: a decrease in the importance of internal talent development; an increase in external hiring practices; increased use of alternative work arrangements such as part-time, temporary, and contract work; and decreasing loyalty of employees to employers. In the analyses of current recruitment practices, it identifies two key trends: the increased use of executive search agencies, and the growing use of the Internet as a recruitment medium.

Keywords: modern firms, human capital, workforce recruitment, labour markets, executive search agencies

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