Module code: MANM485

Module Overview

This module is designed to appeal to a range of students who are seeking to develop a HR career with a focus on those who may be considering a long term Senior managerial HRM career. The unit is designated as core by the Chartered Institute of Personnel and Development (CIPD) making its successful completion a prerequisite for those seeking Chartered Membership. It is intended to provide students with a holistic understanding of the complex and changing organisational contextual circumstances, whether in the market, public or third sectors. The focus is on long term trends in the business environment that have the greatest effect on HRM both directly and indirectly. The range of subjects studied will be wide, encompassing the competitive environment, political, social, legal, demographic, technological, and economic developments with a particular emphasis on globalisation and its impact. A further theme will be the strategic response of organisations to developments in their environments. An introduction to contemporary thinking about business strategy and the role played by HR strategy making in assisting organisations to achieve their objectives. Major contemporary developments in the fields of finance, marketing and information management will be examined in relation to understanding the business environment in which HR professionals work.

Module provider

Surrey Business School

Module Leader

ARYEE Samuel (SBS)

Number of Credits: 15

ECTS Credits: 7.5

Framework: FHEQ Level 7

Module cap (Maximum number of students): N/A

Overall student workload

Independent Learning Hours: 117

Lecture Hours: 22

Seminar Hours: 11

Module Availability

Semester 1

Prerequisites / Co-requisites


Module content

Identifying tools used in environmental analysis
Examining HR strategy and the theoretical perspectives on the nature of HR strategy
The impact of globalisation on HRM
The relationship between Business strategy and HR strategy
Key technological developments
Major developments in UK government regulation and inter-governmental regulation
Social trends
• Short term and long term economic trends
Demographic trends and labour market developments
Competition and choice
Impact on the marketing, finance and information functions

Assessment pattern

Assessment type Unit of assessment Weighting
Examination Examination Pass/Fail

Alternative Assessment


Assessment Strategy

The assessment strategy is designed to provide students with the opportunity to demonstrate:
they have gained knowledge of the strategic management theory, practical, analytical and critical skills with regard to their ability to analyse the strategy of any given corporation, identify HR strategic issues and dilemmas, critically evaluate alternative solutions to such issues and dilemma, and finally recommend a long-term sustainable competitive strategy. Thus, the assessment strategy is designed to test the K+C+P+T skills that students have gained throughout the HRM & Business Environment module.

Thus, the summative assessment for this module consists of:
2 Hour Closed Book Examination with comprehensive questions

Formative assessment: Students will receive verbal feedback during seminars on case study analysis and by best practices of knowledge transfer such as constructive comments/highlights of specific cases and related common mistakes that students might encounter. The latter will be provided either verbally in the class or virtually in Surrey Learn.

Module aims

  • • to enable students to effectively identify contemporary organisations and their principal environments so that they may constructively contribute to the formation of responses which take into account contextual diversity, continuous change, and ethical ambigities
  • • to enable students to identify and critically evaluate developments in the external business environment which are directly relevant to HR practitioners which require a response, providing informed advice to Senior Managers eg developments in the labour market; amendments to employment regulation
  • • to enable students to understand and be informed about the business environment more generally, and its impact on management functions in order to increase HR professionals influence, and credibility at senior levels in their own organisations

Learning outcomes

Attributes Developed
001 Students will be able to meet the learning outcomes contained in the CIPDs advanced diploma syllabus for HRM in Context CKPT
002 Analyse and critically evaluate major environmental developments in the business environment in the following fields: • the competitive environment • labour markets • globalisation and international forces • demographic, social, economic, and technological trends • government policy and regulation • evaluate major contemporary theoretical and managerial perspectives on strategy making in organisations with a specific emphasis on HR strategies CKPT

Attributes Developed

C - Cognitive/analytical

K - Subject knowledge

T - Transferable skills

P - Professional/Practical skills

Methods of Teaching / Learning

The teaching and learning strategies are designed to give students the opportunity to gain knowledge and understanding of the relevant theory and HR/business practices and problems which are pertinent to the topics of HMRC
The teaching and learning methods include the delivery of lectures, business examples, mini-videos and independent-learning. The formal lectures are mainly designed to illustrate and explain the theoretical concepts and models of strategy formulation, implementation and control, illuminating the theoretical concepts and models by reference to, and explanation of a range of specific real business cases. Critical and analytical evaluation of real business cases will be shown via the adoption of business examples in the class/seminar and mini-videos made available in Surrey Learn.
The critical and analytical evaluation of mini business case studies will contribute to developing a practical and critical view of strategy. Therefore, prior to attending the lecture students are required to undertake the essential reading of the theory. To this end, advanced information will be posted on the Surrey Learn website on a weekly basis.

Indicated Lecture Hours (which may also include seminars, tutorials, workshops and other contact time) are approximate and may include in-class tests where one or more of these are an assessment on the module. In-class tests are scheduled/organised separately to taught content and will be published on to student personal timetables, where they apply to taken modules, as soon as they are finalised by central administration. This will usually be after the initial publication of the teaching timetable for the relevant semester.

Reading list
Upon accessing the reading list, please search for the module using the module code: MANM485

Other information


Programmes this module appears in

Programme Semester Classification Qualifying conditions
Human Resources Management MSc 1 Compulsory A weighted aggregate mark of 50% is required to pass the module

Please note that the information detailed within this record is accurate at the time of publishing and may be subject to change. This record contains information for the most up to date version of the programme / module for the 2020/1 academic year.