Tampere University of Technology

TUTCRIS Research Portal

The Human Resources Debt in Software Business

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contributionScientificpeer-review


Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationWell-Being in the Information Society. Fighting Inequalities
Subtitle of host publication7th International Conference, WIS 2018, Turku, Finland, August 27-29, 2018, Proceedings
ISBN (Electronic)978-3-319-97931-1
ISBN (Print)978-3-319-97930-4
Publication statusPublished - 27 Aug 2018
Publication typeA4 Article in a conference publication
EventInternational Conference on Well-Being in the Information Society -
Duration: 27 Sep 201829 Sep 2018

Publication series

NameCommunications in Computer and Information Science
ISSN (Print)1865-0929


ConferenceInternational Conference on Well-Being in the Information Society


This conceptual-analytical paper presents and defines the concept of ‘human resource debt’ (i.e., HR debt). The presented concept draws from the software engineering field’s recent work in the technical debt management, yet it departures from the existing conceptualizations by focusing on skills and competences of individual employees as well as emphasizing the need to manage the skill pool with conscious decisions. As with its paragons, this novel concept aims to help to understand, control and utilize better the phenomenon by using a simple metaphor. In addition, the metaphor, borrowed from the economics, also emphasizes the potential price that has to be paid back later. In the discussion, the ever-changing software industry is used as an example industrial domain; however, the concept should be generalizable to other fields. Finally, the paper lays foundations for future work and proposes initial actions needed for forming a proper research agenda.

Publication forum classification

Field of science, Statistics Finland