Human Resource Management: Find resources

Getting started

> What do you know about the topic? What do you need to explore further?

> What type of information do you need? Does it need to be current?

> Understand your topic - use the course readings, an encyclopedia, dictionary, book or reliable websites

> Choose your keywords and any synonyms

> If you need facts and figures - use handbooks or reliable websites

> Decide which parts of your work need references as supporting evidence

At University there is the expectation that you will use scholarly material to support your arguments.

To determine if a book is scholarly, look:

  • for a bibliography and references at author qualifications and affiliations (e.g. are they affiliated with a university or other institution?)
  • for a reputable publisher (e.g. a university press or well known academic publisher)
  • at the scope or depth of the book - is it what you need, and expected at an academic level?
  • research, statistics or data to back up finding

Is your information relevant or reliable? Not sure whether to use the information you have found? There are simple ways to evaluate your results.

Watch the video above Study Help : Evaluating information (approx 3 mins). Learn to evaluate resources to decide if they are appropriate for your needs.

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Books can provide:[Horia Varlan, 'Hardcover book gutter and pages', CC Licence: CC BY 2.0 (, Image source: Flickr (]

  • definitions
  • overviews
  • step-by-step guides
  • in-depth information on a topic

... and much more comprehensive coverage of a topic than a webpage targeted at the layperson.

Many books in the Library's collection are written or edited by people with expertise in the relevant field.


You can either view ebooks online, or download them to read them later.  To find ebooks in the Library Catalogue conduct your search, then select the Refine Search to Show Only: Full Text Online option and limit to Format Books.

If you would like to download ebooks you'll need to install either an app or ereader, depending of what type of device you're using. Don't worry - they're free and it's easy to do!

For more information about eBooks check out our guide

Other sources for books:

[Boston Public Library, ‘Woman with binoculars at sporting event’, CC BY-NC-ND 2.0, image source: flickr (]   The Library Catalogue is the best place to begin your search for relevant books (both print and ebooks).

The Library continually purchases books to support all disciplines and research areas. Many of these are available online.

Catalogue search tips:

  • If you know the exact title type it into the search box and select Title from the drop-down list e.g. armstrong's essential human resource management (you only need enough of the title to distinguish it from others)
  • If you are searching for a resource with a common title try adding the author's surname to your search
  • Do a keyword search to find information on a particular topic e.g. "personnel management" communication
  • Use the Refine Search options to narrow your search e.g. by Format (e.g. book, media (for audiovisual))
  • Use double quotes for phrases e.g. "south australia"
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Case studies

Binuri Ranasinghe, ‘The case study’, CC License: CC BY-NC-ND 2.0 (, Image source: Flickr (

Case studies are written accounts that give detailed information about a person, group, or organisation and their development over a period of time, with a view to making generalizations.

Many textbooks and recommended readings contain case studies, and you can also find them in the Library's databases.

[State Library of New South Wales, ‘Library confusion, 23/12/1952, by Sam Hood’, no known copyright restrictions, source: flickr (]

How to find case studies in books

You can search for case studies using the Library catalogue:

  • add the phrase "case studies" to your search
  • limit by format/content type eg book or eBook 

Try these Library catalogue searches below to find case studies within books and eBooks.

Case study journals

The Journal of Business Case Studies is an open access journal which allows you to search for case studies across a range of topics, including human resource management. All case studies are fully downloadable as pdfs.


Finding case studies in databases

You can search for case studies in the following databases:

You can also add the phrase "case studies" to your database search in other databases to find case study articles.

Try the following searches in the Business Source Complete database to find case study articles or chapters:

  • "personnel management" AND "case studies"
  • recruiting AND "case studies"
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Top tips

  1. Follow-up on the recommended resources - find and read/view materials referred to in your course information

  2. Go beyond your set readings - in your references, show your knowledge of the broader literature available on the topic, including awareness of a variety of viewpoints/interpretations

  3. Use the most appropriate search tool for what you need to find

  4. Use the terms of others in your searches - what subject terms (also known as 'subject headings' or 'descriptors') appear in Catalogue/database records (and usually under 'refine' on the results page)? Also look at the terms used by authors of relevant publications that you find. Could some of these be useful in future searches?

  5. Try different combinations of search terms

  6. Searching takes time! Don't expect to find all of the information you need for a more in-depth assessment - such as an essay - in one session. Typically you will search, read, and then search again, with new ideas and terms to direct your searches

  7. Always evaluate what you find - is it relevant? Scholarly?

Journals and journal articles

Wiley Asia Blog, ‘business-management-journals’, CC License: CC BY-NC-ND 2.0 (, Image source: Flickr (

Journals enable you to keep up to date with the latest - research, trends, events, conferences, projects, theories...and to gain an historical perspective by accessing material published in previous decades.

Journal articles usually focus on a very specific aspect of a topic, and may be the only source of information on that aspect.

UniSA Library subscribes to thousands of journals on behalf of UniSA students and researchers. Most are available as fulltext online from your desktop, laptop or mobile device.

JamesWoolley5, ‘My Telescope’, CC License: CC BY-SA 2.9 (, Image source: Flickr (

How to find journal articles on a topic

  • Browse journal issues (can be interesting, but takes time, and you won't find everything written on the topic)
  • Search the Library Catalogue
  • Search a database

The Library Catalogue lets you search inside many journals, but does not cover all relevant publications. It also covers every discipline. If you're looking for something specific to a discipline, it can be faster to go straight to an appropriate database.

Catalogue search tips:

  • To find articles on a subject, type in your keywords and then refine by Format > Articles e.g. "personnel management" recruitment australia*
  • To search for articles from a specific journal, try Advanced Search
  • Use double quotes for phrases e.g. "south australia", "personnel management"
  • Use an asterisk * to find alternate word endings e.g. manag* finds manager, managers, management, managing, managerial, etc.


Databases help you to find publications (e.g. journal and newspaper articles, conference papers, book chapters) by a particular author, from a specific publication or on a topic.

They can provide either the full text to a publication or the reference and abstract only.

These databases will help you locate material relevant to  Human Resource Management:

  • Business Source Complete 
    Provides information covering all areas of business including accounting and finance; banking; finance and insurance; construction; computer science; economics and more. Includes country economic reports as well as detailed company profiles.
  • CCH IntelliConnect 
    Provides access to legislation, law reports, digests, cases and legal guides in a range of areas of law including topics such as industrial law, trade practices, taxation and occupational health and safety.
  • Emerald Insight 
    Emerald Insight currently provides online access to 300 journals and over 2,350 books and book series volumes, as well as providing an extensive range of online products such as case studies and more.


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Newspaper articles

[James Yu, ‘Newspaper’, CC BY-NC-SA 2.0 (, image source: flickr (] To find news articles on a particular topic look at the Library databases listed under the News subject heading. These databases contain both Australian and international content:

You may also want to consult the News Media subject guide which includes news wires, RSS feeds, and media releases.

Want to find HRM related Australian newspaper articles?

Use the NewsBank Newspaper database to search for specific Australian articles by selecting the Australia's Newspapers link and search for the article by Headline (change from the default option of All Text), using double quotes around your phrase.

If you don't know the exact headline you can still do a headline search just add keywords and double quotes. For example "long service" by headline would find the article "long service challenged" along with other articles with the keywords "long service" in the headline/title. You will then need to look through your results until you find the article you require. Select the article you require to email or print it.

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