The Individual Essay is worth 20 marks and has a maximum word limit of 2500 words. The assessment criteria are located in the guidelines attached as a separate document in the ESSAY Folder on ilearn.

Students are expected to use at least 10 scholarly references in their analysis. Scholarly references generally include refereed journal articles and academic books/chapters. Students may use sections and/or subsections in their essay but not required to do so. This is purely a matter of personal choice. The objective is to produce a piece of individually written work that is organised in a logical and coherent manner, addresses the essay question in a focused way and uses scholarly reference to support and substantiate your argument.

The essay is due on 8 September (Week 7). Essays are to be submitted to the Student Office by 4.30pm on the 8 September. There will be a slot available on the wall. There is no tutorial scheduled for week 7, but there will be a lecture from 6.00-8.00pm.

The essay must be submitted first to Turnitin. Students must attach the Turnitin certificate to their essay before submitting the hard copy to the Student Office. Essays must also have a cover sheet. Any essay without a cover sheet containing the student’s name and student number will be deemed to have not been submitted.


Students must choose one of the following essay questions:

  1. ‘There are really no sources of enduring competitive advantage in human resources or in HR practices. Managers who pursue sustainable advantage through HRM are engaged in a fruitless search.’ (anonymous) Discuss this contention with reference to the theoretical implications of the resource-based view of SHRM and its limitations.




  1. ‘In this era of rapidly and constantly changing business environments, best practice approaches to HRM have little use. Human resource specialists should act on the basis that every policy choice in HRM is contingent on the specific strategy and competitive context of the firm’. (anonymous) Discuss this assertion with reference to best practice and best fit approaches to strategic human resource management.



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