This chapter considers the application of human resources management (HRM) theory and concepts to the employment of older workers in small to medium-sized information technology (IT) firms. It asks whether these theories are still adequate as the nature of IT business changes and global competition for labour intensifies. New human resources management theories are facilitating expedient, just-in-time flexible workforces as underpinnings of these IT firms, which include new HRM theorists of the new economy (see Castells, 2000; Carnoy, 2000; Benner, 2002). This chapter is based on findings of case studies of small and medium-sized information technology firms in Australia and Canada, which formed part of an international study, ‘Workforce Ageing in the New Economy’(WANE) funded by the Canadian Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council (SSHRC) in 2002–06.
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