Digital transformation of human resource management: Current status, perspectives, challenges, and opportunities


Submissions timetable

Submissions open: 30th November 2022

Call for abstracts: open from 20th October until 31st January 2023

Submissions close: 30th June, 2023


In recent years, the internet, big data, cloud computing, blockchain, artificial intelligence, and 5G technology have become important topics in the political economy of various countries (Nicodemo and Satorra, 2020; Rejeb et al., 2022). The digital economy is becoming a key force in restructuring global factor resources and reshaping the global economic structure (Ma et al., 2022; Pan et al., 2022). Digital transformation is the process of merging different digital technologies with focusing on business models to create significant value for industries and enterprises (Lee et al., 2021). Digital transformation links with domain knowledge, customer requirements, and empirical and theoretical visions for value circulations (Naimi-Sadigh et al., 2022). Digital transformation makes the value chain three-dimensional, networked and informational through digital technology. It promotes the formation of a new dynamic network structure between enterprises and their customers, distributors, suppliers, service providers, and other stakeholders and fundamentally contributes to the change of manufacturing production mode. Digital transformation is “a process that aims to improve an entity by triggering significant changes to its properties through combinations of information, computing, communication, and connectivity technologies” (Vial, 2021)).

Rapid growth in digital technologies has expanded the understanding and process of Human Resource Management (HRM) (da Silva et al., 2022; Jani et al., 2021). Resource and data management of organizations is more organized and easily available in a digital environment (Shet et al., 2021). This condition has allowed most of the effort done by the Human Resource (HR) departments to be carried out in digital media (Vardarlier and Ozsahin, 2021). HRM has become digital HRM due to this transformation (Gilch and Sieweke, 2020; Zehir et al., 2020). Organizations now use digital HR systems while carrying out their human resources purposes (Pantelidis, 2019; Thite, 2022). In this respect, while organizations suggest numerous innovations in the digital era to consumers, HRM also implements the same innovations for staff/employees or applicants. Therefore, digital transformation in HR processes is more efficient when implemented as a part of a wider employment procedure.

Digital HRM is a digital transformation of HR practices and processes using information technology (IT), electronic mobile, media, and analytics to make HRM more effective and efficient (Jackson and Dunn-Jensen, 2021; Nicolás-Agustín et al., 2022). In other words, digital HRM is essentially managing the human resource works through soft applications, technologies, and the internet (Bresciani et al., 2021). Digital transformation or digitization is somewhat that organizations need to take in order to be effective and significant in the future. Otherwise, they will lag behind other organizations in the market industry. Digital HRM refers to the management activities and methods that use the computer, communication, network, and other technologies to quantify the management objects and management behaviors through statistical technology to realize the functions of R&D, planning, organization, production, coordination, sales, service, and innovation (Yoo et al., 2012). Although digital has the simplest, objective, fast, international, powerful, and talkative characteristics, digital HRM must focus on the people-oriented principle in the management process. Because people are the principal part of digital HRM, we should not forget the people-oriented principle just because of digital. In digital HRM, we must pay attention to people-oriented, and it’s necessary to understand, respect people, stimulate people’s enthusiasm and creativity, tap people’s potential and give full play to people’s wisdom so as to achieve the best work effect.

However, the concept of digital HRM (Wang and Zheng, 2022) and related concepts such as the digitization of HRM (Konovalova et al., 2021), the digitalization of HRM (Zhou et al., 2021), the digital transformation of HRM (Lowndes, 2021), and the digital disruption of HRM (Yalenios and d'Armagnac, 2022) are gaining importance in recent literature by various scholars and researchers. However, the use of these concepts is proliferating, heterogeneous, and implicit (Strohmeier, 2020). These concepts, therefore, lack the “conceptual clarity” that is essential to consider by future scholars. In this regard, this special issue focused on how the digital transformation concepts in the field of HRM can enhance the maintainability of enterprises’ human resources processes, and systems from different perspectives. Papers considered for the Special Issue include but are limited to the following topics:

  • New theoretical perspectives in digital transformation in HRM
  • Political, economic, socio-cultural variables on digital HRM
  • Electronic-human resource management (E-HRM)
  • Digital HRM strategies
  • Digital HRM and performance
  • Drivers and barriers in HRM digitalization
  • HRM 4.0
  • Methodological challenges for digital HRM
  • Adoption of digital HRM
  • Human resources in the digital age
  • Challenges of digital HRM
  • Determinants of digital HRM
  • Digital HRM for innovation and entrepreneurship
  • The role of culture in digital HRM
  • The digital HRM process in SMEs
  • Digital HRM of business models
  • Digital HRM and big data
  • Digital HRM and industry 4.0
  • Digital HRM and the Internet of Things.
  • Digital HRM and sustainable development
  • Digital HRM, fuzzy sets, and decision making
  • Digital HRM and machine learning
  • Digital HRM and optimizations models

Guest Editors

Abbas Mardani; University of South Florida; United States; [email protected]; [email protected]  

Charbel Jose Chiappetta Jabbour; NEOMA Business School, France, [email protected] ; [email protected]  

Fausto Cavallaro; University of Molise; Italy;  [email protected]

Muhammet Deveci; Imperial College London; UK, [email protected]; [email protected]

Submissions Timetable:

Open for new submissions: November 30, 2022

Call for abstracts which is open from now until: 31st of January. 2023

Submissions Close: 30th June, 2023


Bresciani, S., Ferraris, A., Romano, M., Santoro, G., (2021) Human Resource Management and Digitalisation, Digital Transformation Management for Agile Organizations: A Compass to Sail the Digital World. Emerald Publishing Limited, pp. 117-138.

da Silva, L.B.P., Soltovski, R., Pontes, J., Treinta, F.T., Leitão, P., Mosconi, E., de Resende, L.M.M., Yoshino, R.T. (2022) Human resources management 4.0: Literature review and trends. Computers & Industrial Engineering 168, 108111.

Gilch, P.M., Sieweke, J. (2020) Recruiting digital talent: The strategic role of recruitment in organisations’ digital transformation. German Journal of Human Resource Management 35, 53-82.

Jackson, N.C., Dunn-Jensen, L.M. (2021) Leadership succession planning for today’s digital transformation economy: Key factors to build for competency and innovation. Business Horizons 64, 273-284.

Jani, A., Muduli, A., Kishore, K. (2021) Human resource transformation in India: examining the role digital human resource technology and human resource role. International Journal of Organizational Analysis ahead-of-print.

Konovalova, V.G., Aghgashyan, R.V., Galazova, S.S., (2021) Perspectives and Restraining Factors of HR Analytics in the Conditions of Digitization of Human Resources Management, in: Popkova, E.G., Ostrovskaya, V.N., Bogoviz, A.V. (Eds.), Socio-economic Systems: Paradigms for the Future. Springer International Publishing, Cham, pp. 1015-1024.

Lee, C.-H., Liu, C.-L., Trappey, AJC, Mo, JPT, Desouza, KC (2021) Understanding digital transformation in advanced manufacturing and engineering: A bibliometric analysis, topic modeling and research trend discovery. Advanced Engineering Informatics 50, 101428.

Lowndes, N. (2021) Making digital transformation work: Drivers and barriers in HRM digitalisation. Academy of Management Proceedings 2021, 13464.

Ma, Q., Tariq, M., Mahmood, H., Khan, Z. (2022) The nexus between digital economy and carbon dioxide emissions in China: The moderating role of investments in research and development. Technology in Society 68, 101910.

Naimi-Sadigh, A., Asgari, T., Rabiei, M. (2022) Digital Transformation in the Value Chain Disruption of Banking Services. Journal of the Knowledge Economy 13, 1212-1242.

Nicodemo, C., Satorra, A. (2020) Exploratory data analysis on large data sets: The example of salary variation in Spanish Social Security Data. BRQ Business Research Quarterly 25, 283-294.

Nicolás-Agustín, Á., Jiménez-Jiménez, D., Maeso-Fernandez, F. (2022) The role of human resource practices in the implementation of digital transformation. International Journal of Manpower 43, 395-410.

Pan, W., Xie, T., Wang, Z., Ma, L. (2022) Digital economy: An innovation driver for total factor productivity. Journal of Business Research 139, 303-311.

Pantelidis, I., (2019) Digital human resource management, Human Resource Management in the Hospitality Industry. Routledge, pp. 337-352.

Rejeb, A., Rejeb, K., Simske, S., Treiblmaier, H., Zailani, S. (2022) The big picture on the internet of things and the smart city: a review of what we know and what we need to know. Internet of Things 19, 100565.

Shet, S.V., Poddar, T., Wamba Samuel, F., Dwivedi, YK (2021) Examining the determinants of successful adoption of data analytics in human resource management – A framework for implications. Journal of Business Research 131, 311-326.

Strohmeier, S. (2020) Digital human resource management: A conceptual clarification. German Journal of Human Resource Management 34, 345-365.

Thite, M. (2022) Digital human resource development: where are we? Where should we go and how do we go there? Human Resource Development International 25, 87-103.

Vardarlier, P., Ozsahin, M. (2021) Digital Transformation of Human Resource Management: Social Media’s Performance Effect. International Journal of Innovation and Technology Management 18, 2150005.

Vial, G. (2021) Understanding digital transformation: A review and a research agenda. Managing Digital Transformation, 13-66.

Wang, L., Zheng, G. (2022) Linking Digital HRM Practices with HRM Effectiveness: The Moderate Role of HRM Capability Maturity. Academy of Management Proceedings 2022, 18262.

Yalenios, J., d'Armagnac, S. (2022) Work transformation and the HR ecosystem dynamics: A longitudinal case study of HRM disruption in the era of the 4th industrial revolution. Human Resource Management n/a.

Yoo, Y., Boland, R.J., Lyytinen, K., Majchrzak, A. (2012) Organizing for Innovation in the Digitized World. Organization Science 23, 1398-1408.

Zehir, C., Karaboğa, T., Başar, D., (2020) The Transformation of Human Resource Management and Its Impact on Overall Business Performance: Big Data Analytics and AI Technologies in Strategic HRM, in: Hacioglu, U. (Ed.), Digital Business Strategies in Blockchain Ecosystems: Transformational Design and Future of Global Business. Springer International Publishing, Cham, pp. 265-279.

Zhou, Y., Liu, G., Chang, X., Wang, L. (2021) The impact of HRM digitalization on firm performance: investigating three-way interactions. Asia Pacific Journal of Human Resources 59, 20-43.