Thursday, January 08, 2009

Not Asking the Correct Questions About Job Satisfaction

International Journal of Industrial ErgonomicsVolume 39, Issue 1, January 2009, Pages 1-6
Effect of job organization on job satisfaction among shop floor employees in automotive industries in Malaysia
S.Z. Dawala, , , Z. Tahaa and Z. Ismailb
aDepartment of Engineering Design and Manufacture, Faculty of Engineering, University of Malaya, Lembah Pantai 50603 Kuala Lumpur, Wilayah Persekutuan, Malaysia
bDepartment of Civil Engineering, Faculty of Engineering, University of Malaya, Lembah Pantai 50603 Kuala Lumpur, Wilayah Persekutuan, Malaysia

The effect of job organization factors on job satisfaction was examined in two automotive industries in Malaysia. The information was collected from 170 male subjects with the mean age and work experience of 26.8 ± 5.3 years and 6.5 ± 4.9 years, respectively. The results showed that the job satisfaction was significantly related to job organization factors. The potential applications of these findings include methods developed in diagnosing the industrial work, namely, questionnaire design, data collection and statistical analysis to diagnose current industrial work design that affect workers satisfaction. The relationship between job organization factors and job satisfaction was analyzed using statistical methods to determine the correlations and regression model. The model developed highlights that the most significant factors in both automotive companies are job rotation, work method, problem solving and goal setting with adjusted R2 of 0.8 and 0.7 for the two automotive companies.
Relevance to industry
The study highlights methodological developments in determining the effect of job organization factors on job satisfaction in the automotive industries. The findings suggest that job organization factors and job satisfaction are significantly related and it is therefore important to maintain these factors in an automotive industrial environment in order to keep the shop-floor employees motivated.
BrooklynDodger(s) comment: Work organization results are particularly likely to be influence by cultural factors, especially in what would be considered a rising industrial power. The Dodger(s) are pleased to see that publications from these nations are making their way to the international literature.
That said, factory work is organized in similar fashion everywhere, especially in the automotive industry. A factory workforce is stratified: management; professional (engineers, logistics); technical; clerical; skilled maintenance; mobile occupations (material handling, laborers); fixed production (assemblers, machine operators). These strata have observable differences is work organization, and in particular for the fixed production strata, ergonomic risk and musculoskeletal pain. There are salaried occupations on the "shop floor," but more important there are distinct strata in the hourly occupations on the "shop floor."
The Dodger(s) didn't find any recognition of this in the paper. In particular, the confounding of musculoskeletal pain with fixed production jobs should be taken into account in these job satisfaction surveys.
The Dodger(s) would have preferred that the abstract to recognize that this is a pilot study, and much more, that the direction of the associations be stated.

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