The light-emitting diode (LED) with an improved hole injection and straightforward process integration is proposed. p-type GaN direct hole injection plugs (DHIPs) are formed on locally etched multiple-quantum wells (MQWs) by epitaxial lateral overgrowth (ELO) method. We confirm that the optical output power is increased up to 23.2% at an operating current density of 100 A/cm2. Furthermore, in order to identify the origin of improvement in optical performance, the transient light decay time and light intensity distribution characteristics were analyzed on the DHIP LED devices. Through the calculation of the electroluminescence (EL) decay time, internal quantum efficiency (IQE) is extracted along with the recombination parameters, which reveals that the DHIPs have a significant effect on enhancement of radiative recombination and reduction of efficiency droop. Furthermore, the mapping PL reveals that the DHIP LED also has a potential to improve the light extraction efficiency by hexagonal pyramid shaped DHIPs.