– Enhancing the potential of HR responsibilities – a relational approach to successful devolution to the line
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- Master of Science 
The aim of this thesis is to explore how HR managers and line managers collaborate when implementing HR practices, such as an employee engagement survey, in terms of unleashing the potential of devolution to the line. By acknowledging the gaps between the literature and reality presented by Andersen and Kuvaas (2009), we were inspired to have a relational approach to better understand the HR partnership and its effects in organizations devolving HR to the line. Drawing on grounded theory, we conducted a case study of 17 virtual semi-structured interviews with line managers and HR managers in an organization conducting a devolution strategy to investigate their real-life experiences during the process of an employee engagement survey. As a result of the data-near way method of working and our theoretical sampling, the initiator of the HR practice was also added to our sample. This thesis made some valuable contributions to the field of HRM. More specifically, discrepancies within the HR partnership regarding role clarification were detected. In turn, this may influence the people-management causal chain which is of relevance for bringing well-intended HR practices to life. Moreover, the present thesis contributes to research by recognizing the importance of organizational support throughout the line. In fact, our findings indicate that organizational support might even compensate for the need for formal training when devolving HR responsibilities. Thus, our thesis proposes that all levels in the line must be acknowledged for organizations to unleash the full potential of devolution to the line.
Masteroppgave(MSc) in Master of Science in Leadership and Organizational Psychology - Handelshøyskolen BI, 2020