More than a match? Assessing the HRM challenge of engaging employers to support retention and progression

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Colleges, School and Institutes

External organisations

  • Coventry Univ


This paper considers employer engagement within a changing landscape of Active Labour Market Policy (ALMP). Employer engagement in ALMP has focused on supporting job entry for disadvantaged groups, through working with employers to attain changes on the demand-side, or using dialogue with employers to implement changes on the supply-side. Employer engagement in this model is orientated to a point in time: the job match. However ALMP policy in the United Kingdom is beginning to give greater emphasis to the sustainability of job entries and progression opportunities. This potentially creates a quite different set of expectations around employer engagement, and asks more of employers. Yet securing strong engagement from employers in ALMP has tended to be difficult. This paper examines the challenges that such a change in focus will have for existing models of employer engagement and on associated implications for HRM theory, policy and practices.


Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)565-580
Number of pages16
JournalHuman Resource Management Journal
Issue number4
Early online date21 Nov 2017
Publication statusPublished - Nov 2017


  • Low Pay, Precarious employment, Welfare, Training and development, Employer engagement, Active Labour Market Policy