Offering choice in benefits - A new Dutch HRM arrangement

C. Hillebrink, A. van Doorne-Huiskes, P. Peters, J.J. Schippers

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review


The purpose of this study is to examine what kinds of Dutch organisations offer their employees a choice in the composition of their benefits with the aid of a theoretical model that incorporates insights from rational choice theory, the theory of institutional pressures and the bundles of human resource management (HRM) theory.

To test the theoretical model data were collected from nearly 600 Dutch organisations in the market sector. Multivariate binary logistic regression analyses were used to analyse these data.

The research showed that flexible benefit plans (FBPs) are widespread and show a considerable degree of consistency in the options they offer. FBPs are most likely to be offered by organisations that have freedom to manoeuvre in their benefits, that witness other organisations around them offering such arrangements, and that offer HRM policies and practices that are strongly focussed on the combination of work and family, and on flexibility in working arrangements.

Research limitations/implications
Attention to HRM policies in addition to a combination of rational choice and institutional theory proved valuable in explaining the uptake of a new arrangement, and this merits further exploration.

Practical implications
FPBs offer Dutch organisations the opportunity to give their employees more choice in the way they are paid, and to adjust this pay to their personal situation. Offering this choice fits in with a family‐friendly HRM structure and increases flexibility for both parties.

The paper provides useful information on FBPs.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)304-322
Number of pages19
JournalInternational Journal of Manpower
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - 2008


  • Sociaal-culturele Wetenschappen (SOWE)


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