The Transfer of Competences to European-Based Japanese Affiliates
| Lorenz E. and N. Lazaric |
This paper focuses on the ability of Japanese multinational companies to transfer their domestic business practices to their overseas manufacturing operations located in Britain and France.
It draws on two sources of information: the results of a postal questionnaire sent to the managing directors of the entire population of Japanese affiliates with production sites in Britain and France; and information based on interviews conducted with managerial personnel on the sites of three affiliates located in the UK and six located in France.
While Japanese multinational companies, in so far as they have tried,have not managed to transfer their employment model wholesale, they have managed to create local hybrid systems which serve to promote continuous improvement in productivity and product quality.
These distinct local combinations differ from the original template primarily in terms of the factors which determine pay and promotion and how these elements of the human resources system are linked to the organisation of work.
While some national specificity can be observed in the form the local combinations take, there remains considerable intra-country variety. In this sense one can say that there are national effects without, at least for the moment, there being clear
national hybrid models.