Employee Responsibilities and Rights Journal

, Volume 18, Issue 4, pp 295–307 | Cite as

Is Strategic Human Resource Management Socially Responsible? The Case of Wegmans Food Markets, Inc.

  • Souha R. EzzedeenEmail author
  • Christina M. Hyde
  • Kiana R. Laurin


In 2005, Wegmans Food Markets Inc., the family-owned supermarket chain, was awarded the number one spot on the Fortune “100 Best Companies To Work For.” Wegmans’ recognition illustrates an exemplary case of strategic human resource management embedded in an overall culture of social responsibility, amidst a highly competitive and low margin industry. We detail Wegmans’ human resource practices and its overall stakeholder orientation, arguing that the treatment of employees as strategic assets constitutes an effective approach to social responsibility. In other words, strategic human resource management can help organizations reconcile the often cited conflict between profits and principles. We therefore begin with an overview of the contemporary supermarket industry, provide a brief history of Wegmans, and showcase the supermarket chain’s human resource practices. In closing, we discuss Wegmans’ stakeholder orientation and comment on the divide between strategic human resource management and social responsibility research.

Key words

employee practices human resource management social responsibility strategic human resource management Wegmans 



The authors are grateful to Paul M. Swiercz for his feedback on an earlier version of the manuscript.


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC 2006

Authors and Affiliations

  • Souha R. Ezzedeen
    • 1
    Email author
  • Christina M. Hyde
    • 2
  • Kiana R. Laurin
    • 2
  1. 1.School of Business AdministrationThe Pennsylvania State University HarrisburgMiddletownUSA
  2. 2.Undergraduate Studies, School of Business AdministrationThe Pennsylvania State University HarrisburgMiddletownUSA

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