A Comparison of Employee’s Engagement Models with Emphasis on Human Resources in Iranian Organizations

Document Type : Original Article

Authors

1 PhD Student, Department of Public Administration, Qazvin Branch, Islamic Azad University, Qazvin, Iran

2 Assistant Professor, Department of Public Administration, Payame Noor University, Karaj Branch

3 Assistant Professor, Department of Administration, University of Tehran

10.22034/ijce.2021.256255.1236

Abstract

Many organizations face the challenge of having employees with low sense of job belonging. The aim of this study was to compare employee’s belongingness models with emphasis on human resources in Iranian organizations. The method of research is qualitative comparative using content-oriented analysis approach. The statistical population includes all models of employee’s job belonging using purposeful sampling method for selection of samples. The method of data collection is documentary and method of data analysis was deductive content analysis. Findings show that the highest degree of similarity among employee’s job belongingness models is on emotional belonging, work quality, possibility of progressiveness and reward and benefits components. Also, out of the 14 selected models, about one third emphasize on role of effective leadership, customer orientation, and productivity dimensions to increase employee’s job belonging. Another finding of the study is lack of attention of all models to the role of components such as social and organizational cultures. According to the research findings, it is suggested to human resources policymakers in governmental and non-governmental organizations of Iran to pay more attention to components such as role of social culture and organizational culture to design a new model for their organizations.

Highlights

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Keywords

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Article Title [فارسی]

مقایسه الگوهای تعلق خاطر کارکنان با تاکید بر منابع انسانی در سازمان های ایرانی

Authors [فارسی]

  • سعید ابریشمی راد 1
  • مراد کردی 2
  • طیبه عباسی 3
1 دانشجوی دکتری ، گروه مدیریت دولتی ، واحد قزوین ، دانشگاه آزاد اسلامی ، قزوین ، ایران
2 استادیار ، گروه مدیریت دولتی ، دانشگاه پیام نور ، واحد کرج
3 استادیار ، گروه مدیریت ، دانشگاه تهران
Abstract [فارسی]

بسیاری ازسازمان ها با چالش وجود کارکنان با تعلق خاطر کاری پایین روبرویند. هدف پژوهش حاضر ، مقایسه الگوهای تعلق خاطر کارکنان با تاکید بر منابع انسانی در سازمان های ایران بود. روش تحقیق حاضر ، تطبیقی کیفی با رویکرد تحلیل محتوی جهت دار است . جامعه پژوهش شامل کلیه الگوهای تعلق خاطر کاری کارکنان و شیوه نمونه گیری هدفمند در دسترس می باشد. روش جمع آوری داده ها ، کتابخانه ای و روش تحلیل داده ها ، مقوله بندی قیاسی است. یافته های تحقیق نشان می دهد که بیشترین درجه تشابه بین مدل های تعلق خاطر کاری تاکید آنها بر مولفه های تعلق احساسی ، کیفیت کار ، امکان پیشرفت وپاداش ومزایا است. هم چنین از بین 14 مدل منتخب، حدود یک سوم آنها بر نقش مولفه هایی همچون رهبری موثر ، مشتری محوری ، و  بهره وری در ایجاد تعلق خاطر شغلی تاکید ورزیده اند. یافته دیگر تحقیق مبین عدم توجه کلیه مدل های منتخب به نقش مولفه هایی همچون فرهنگ اجتماعی و سازمانی در تعلق خاطر کاری کارکنان است.با توجه به یافته های تحقیق به سیاست گزاران منابع انسانی در سازمان های دولتی وغیردولتی ایران پیشنهاد می گردد ضمن توجه به مولفه های مشترک در مدل های بین المللی تعلق خاطر کاری ، در فرایند طراحی مدل مناسب برای سازمان خود ، توجه به مولفه هایی همچون نقش فرهنگ اجتماعی و فرهنگ سازمانی را مدنظر قرار دهند. 

Keywords [فارسی]

  • تعلق خاطر شغلی
  • منابع انسانی
  • دلبستگی سازمانی
  • فرهنگ اجتماعی

 

  1. Introduction

          Since the formation of field of management, one of the important concerns of its theorists was to provide solutions for maximum use of human resources. Contemporary changes in business and emergence of a knowledge-based economy have added to the importance of making optimal use of human resources. However, many research findings confirm relationship between quality manpower and level of organizational productivity (Fernandez, & Rajan, 2015; Brikend, 2012; Chebolu, 2005; Grant, & Gino, 2010; Leary, and Allen 2010 Pratt, and Ashforth. 2003); but the impact of various internal and external factors on employee performance has not yet eliminated the need for further research (Dziuba, Ingaldi, & Zhuravskaya, 2020) (Abuhashesh, Al-Dmour, Masa'deh, 2019). One of the most important factors that have been considered by management scientists is the degree of job belonging and commitment of employees to their organization and its goals. Staff belongingness can be defined as “the congruence between the expectations of the role within the organization and the personal needs of the employee” (Brion, 2015, 21).A clear view of the behaviours demonstrated by the engaged employee emerged: belief in the organization,  desire to work to make things better, understanding of business context and the ‘bigger picture’, respectful of, and helpful to, colleagues, willingness to ‘go the extra mile’ and keeping up-to-date with developments in the field (Robinson, Perryman, & Hayday, 2004, p 7). William Kahn defines belongingness as the use of all existential aspects to perform professional tasks and duties. According to him, people with high sense of belonging use all their physical, cognitive and emotional dimensions to do work, while lack of belongingness leads to physical, cognitive and emotional separation from work (Kahn, 1990). Hewitt (2004) considers belongingness as the amount of belonging and interest that employees have about their organization. Inceoglu & War (2012) also believe that belonging to work means having a high level of energy and job engagement. Shaufli, Marnitz & Salnov (2002) describe belongingness as a positive, satisfied, and work-related state of mind. What these definitions have in common is the basic message that people with a sense of belonging tend to be more resilient, take the initiative, and expand the scope of their role.

 

         Research evidence has also shown that there is a relationship between job belongingness and other dimensions of organizational behavior such as job performance, acceptance of job stress, leadership effectiveness, participation in organizational initiatives and entrepreneurship. For example, Macey & Schneider (2008) indicated that factors such as employee trust, fairness and non-discrimination, and the provision of material / financial rewards are effective in increasing job belongingness. Cooper-Thomas, Paterson, Stadler & Saks (2014) indicate that high levels of expectations and frequent performance reviews can increase employee participation and cooperation. Menguc, Auh, Fisher & Haddad, (2013) believe that main focus of employee engagement is the alignment of the employee with the organizational goals and to go beyond what is expected. Anitha (2014) suggested employee engagement reflects two essential elements: (a) willingness to contribute to organizational success and (b) a positive and energized employee who is at a motivational state. The findings of Osborne & Hammoud (2017 indicated that the bond between leaders and employees is an essential element for engaging employees, which in turn increased organizational profitability.

 

          However, nowadays improving productivity and staff performance, innovation in work, and flexibility and accountability of employees has become a global challenge for organizations. In a research by Gallup it was reveal that in USA.  17.2% of the people working in the organizations are actively disengaged, 32 % are engaged and almost 50.8% are not engaged. Although these statistics cannot be generalized, they hold true for majority of the cases (Adkins, 2015). In the meantime, especially governmental and semi-governmental organizations and institutions (such as schools and municipalities) - which are managed on the one hand through public budgets and limited resources and on the other hand are responsible for providing services to a large part of society - more than ever need to have committed employees with a high sense of belonging. For this reason, human resource planners and managers of these organizations and institutions try to increase the effectiveness of their organization by designing and developing an appropriate pattern of job belongingness. In this regard, it is natural that the first step should be to identify the existing models of employee’s job belonging and the effective dimensions of each model - according to the specific conditions of each organization. Given these points, it should be emphasized that one of the salient features of governmental and semi-governmental organizations and institutions in many countries - including Iran - is the low staff commitment and poor job belongingness. To prove this, we will have a brief look at the research findings in the next section.

 

  1. Research Background

 

           The research literature shows the growing interest of researchers in the field of management and organizational behavior to examine the degree of job belongingness of employees to their organization’s goals and the relationship between this variable with other variables. For example, in his recent research Green, Gino, & Staats (2017, 11) emphasize that employees, seek to belong and seek to enhance their sense of belongingness in work settings. The experience of belongingness, then, is a psychological state of feeling that others care about the self and are interested in well-being of the self. Fernandez, & Rajan, (2015) revealed that there is no significant association between age, length of experience and income of the staff and their sense of belonging to the organization. Burke and Al-kot (2010) in a study conducted in Egypt showed that job belongingness has a significant negative relationship with the tendency to leave the work. Freeney & Tiernan (2009) in their study of facilitators and barriers to job commitment showed that high workload, lack of control, inadequate and disproportionate rewards, lack of fairness, and heterogeneity of values ​​are among the factors that cause employees' mental depression. Also, the research of Vanam (2009) and Hallberg, Johansson & Schaufeli (2007) reveal relationship between job independence and job belonging. Employees who are sufficiently independent in their profession are motivated internally to achieve professional goals. Mauno, Kinnunen & Rukolainen (2007) found that in Finnish health care staff, job control and organizational self-esteem were the best predictors of job belongingness. The findings of a study by the New Century Financial Corporation showed that in the sales sector, non-committed employees had 28% lower sales than employees with job belongingness (Seijts & Crim 2006). In a study of female school principals, Bakker, Gierveld & Van Rijswijk (2006) found that resilience, self-efficacy, and optimism help increase job belonging.

 

           Hakanen , Bakker & Schaufeli (2006) studied the situation of Finnish teachers and found that job control, information, supervisory support, innovative climate, and social climate were positively related to job belonging. In addition to the above research, the relationship between job belonging and organizational commitment from various angles such as organizational commitment, lasting intention, resignation intention or relocation intention and permanence expected have been studied by Saks & Rotman (2006), Richman (2006), Schaufeli, Marfitnez, Pinto, Salanovo & Bakker (2002); Hughes & Rog (2008), Kandulapati & Manchala (2011). The results of these studies indicated that job belongingness has a negative relationship with the intention to leave or relocate job and a positive relationship with organizational commitment and expected sustainability.

 

           Various studies have been conducted by Iranian researchers on the dimensions of job belongingness. Faraghi, & Jenani, (2018) study the effect of career optimism on physical education teachers’ work engagement and thriving at work in the city of Urmia. They found that the career optimism on work path can increase the physical education teachers’ work engagement and thriving at work, accordingly resulting in their efficiency and performance. Rangriz, Sajjadi, & Latifi Jaliseh, (2018) studies the factors affecting the work engagement in Iranian organizations using the Meta - analysis approach. Their findings showed that the variables of psychological empowerment, psychological capital, perceived organizational support, and meaningful work have the greatest effect, and the variables of servant leadership, occupational requirements and perceived support from the partner have the least effect size. Karimi; Soltani, & Mohmoodi (2016) reveal that there is a significant negative coloration between the variables of perception of organizational policies and self- efficacy and job involvement. Almasi (2019) in analyzing the relationship between moral intelligence, social capital and job engagement among bank employees revealed that building moral intelligence by improving social capital increases job engagement. Issakhani (2013) shows that job resources and personal resources have a positive and meaningful relationship with job belongingness; but the impact of job resources is greater than personal resources. Roshannejad, Sharafat & Gholipour (2012) found that the dimensions of job resources (such as job importance, job control, significance and internal reward) have a positive and significant relationship with professional belonging.

 

           In research by Issa Khani, Fani & Danaeifard (2013), the four main factors of job requirements (work pressure, mental requirements and emotional requirements), job resources (independence and freedom of action, social support, feedback and growth and learning opportunities), Personal resources (self-sufficiency, pioneering personality and conscientiousness), and organizational resources (communication and work-life balance) were identified as factors influencing the emergence of job belonging. The research of Naghizadeh Baghi, Zahed Babalan & Akhrabin (2013) found that servant leadership and organizational learning have a positive and significant relationship with nurses' work commitment. Mir Heidari, Siadat, Hoveida & Abedi (2012) investigated relationship between organizational learning and self-efficacy with managers' job belonging. They recognize that better organizational performance requires changes in insights and mental patterns of personals, and skills and methods of work. Researchers of management science have provided strong support to recognize the factors affect job belongingness. This strong support shows that job belongingness and its components affect different dimensions and variables of the organization and have a significant relationship with them. Also, different organizational variables affect the creation, increase or decrease of job belonging. In addition, job belonging has a mediating role in establishing a relationship between different organizational variables. However, this brief summary raises the question of what are the most popular models of job belonging at the moment, what are the dimensions and components of these models, what are the strengths and weaknesses of each model, and what are the similarities and differences among the models. To answer these questions, this study was conducted to compare available employee’s belonging models with emphasis on human resources in Iranian organizations. According to the purpose of the research, the following sub-objectives have been considered by the researchers:

 

  • Identify common models of employees’ belongingness and its components
  • Identify and explain the similarities of employees’ belongingness models
  • Identify and explain the differences among employees’ belongingness models

 

  1. Research Method

 

         The method of the present research is qualitative content analysis. According to Woods & Catanzaro (1988), content analysis is a method that objectively discovers specific characteristics of a message based on certain rules. The statistical population includes all models of employees’ job belongingness that are available in primary and secondary sources. Primary sources include books and articles in which researchers and designers have explained their models for the first time. Secondary sources mainly include publications, articles, databases, and websites of Governmental and Non-governmental organizations that have reviewed and analyzed some of the models. In this sense, the method of data collection is documentary. According to Hsieh & Shanon (2005), the existing approaches in content analysis approach can be divided into three categories: customary content analysis, directional and summative. In this study, a third approach has been used to analyze the data. In summative analysis, the researcher focuses on discovering the basic meanings of words or themes (Iman & Noshadi, 2011). Also, this type of analysis is used in the analytical study of various articles in scientific journals as well as reference books.

 

  1. Findings

 

        Organizational experts have tried to provide variables related to the phenomenon of employees’ belongingness in the form of various models and provide an explanation of how it is formed. These models try to show and explain how they are formed by referring to the most important factors of job belongingness. In the following, the features of the selected models are presented and then the models are compared with each other:

 

 

 

 

 

  1. Features of selected models

 

First: Kahn Model of Job Belongingness

 

         William Kahn (1990) as the first researcher in this field, considers a set of psychological conditions including meaning, security and accessibility to be effective in creating employees' job belongingness. In job belongingness, individuals use or express all of their physical, cognitive, and emotional dimensions in their role. Lack of job belongingness means separation of oneself from professional duties. In the absence of job belongingness, individuals are physically, cognitively, and emotionally detached from their professional roles.

 

Second: Hay Group Model

 

            Since 1943, Hay Group Company has been involved in the development of methods for the promotion of employees and organizations. This company has designed an employees’ job belongingness model whose six components are: Inspiration and Values, Future Growth / Opportunity, Quality of Work, Enabling Environment, Work / Life Balance and Tangible Rewards. According to experts, these six components act as motivational stimuli and help to create an attractive workplace and achieve the desired results (Hay Group, 2001).

 

Third: Royal Bank of Scotland Model (RBS)

 

          This model was designed in 2003 by the experts of the mentioned bank to increase the job belonging of the employees. The RBS model suggests that having employees who say they are satisfied with their jobs at RBS is only the starting point. Employee consistently speaks positively about the organization to others. As a next step, these employees should also be committed (that is, say they want to stay with the company). She /he Intense desire to be part of the organization. The ultimate goal is an engaged workforce, containing employees who are willing to make an extra effort to help the company achieve its goals. The output will be an excellent business results (Robinson, Perryman & Hayday, 2004).

 

Fourth: Robinson Model of Employee Engagement

 

            Robinson (2004) has given this model, which describing that feeling of value is a major component of employee engagement (Vinod & Joy, 2018). Many experts have emphasized the importance and value of employee involvement in the work as a key driver of job belongingness. This feeling is influenced by other elements such as participation in decisions and opportunities that employees have for development and advancement in their jobs. These elements each have a different effect on the extent to which employees feel valued, involved, and belonging to the job (Robinson et al., 2004). According to this diagnostic model, some stimuli are essential or contractual requirements for the organization such as payments, benefits, health and safety (health factors); while other stimuli are areas that the organization should do to ensure effective communication and employee engagement (motivational factors).

 

Fifth: Penna model

 

            Researchers at the British company of Penna, which provides consulting services to companies and organizations, have developed a model namely “Job Belongingness Hierarchy”, which is similar to Maslow's Hierarchy of Needs model. At the lowest level of this model are payments and benefits. When an employee is satisfied with these needs, he or she looks for learning and development opportunities, the possibility of promotion and advancement, and a leadership style combined with mutual trust. Finally, when all of the above is below the level of the employee's aspirations, he or she pays attention to the balance of value and meaning in the work, as evidenced by a sense of connection and common goal (Penna, 2007). This model shows that employees are looking for meaning in work. Penna defines meaning in work as a situation in which a job achieves the goals for employees by valuing and appreciating employees, and creating a sense of belonging and coordination with the organization. In this model, as the hierarchy ascends and the organization successfully meets the stimuli of belonging, it attracts more potential employees and makes its existing employees more enthusiastic.

 

Sixth: The Mercer Model

 

            This model was developed by Mercer Experts, an American human resource company based in New York. Mercer’s model for effective employee engagement includes giving employees the opportunity to preform and recognizing them for it, cultivating positive relationships and being treated fairly (Mercer, 2007). Mercer’s research “What’s Working?” surveys has gathered data from a cross-section of industries. These surveys had questions grouped into 13 dimensions:

 

  • Work processes
  • Quality and customer focus
  • Benefits
  • Communication
  • Work/life balance
  • Job security and career growth
  • Teamwork and cooperation
  • Ethics and integrity
  • Immediate manager
  • Performance management
  • Compensation
  • Leadership and direction
  • Training and development

 

          From these dimensions, Mercer identified four global drivers: The work itself, including opportunities for development, Confidence and trust in leadership engagement, Recognition and rewards & Organizational communication (Morrison, 2016).

 

Seventh: Zinger Model

 

           Canadian researcher David Zinger, founder of the Employee Engagement Network, designed a model with the following 12 key components. (1) Achieve results by proper plan and execution (2) Craft strategies considering both organization and employee requirement (3) Enliven roles by removing the boredom factor from the work (4) Excel at work by rewarding for the hard work which create a self-esteem among employee (5) Get connected or remain connected with organization as well as employee (6) Be authentic by responding genuinely when addressing the problem of employee and do justice (7) Live recognition (8) creating fully engaged employee with a clear mindset that employees are their greatest assets (9) Serving customers by creating a culture and tradition (10) Develop personally by up-gradation of skill according to the requirement and (12) Attain happiness with satisfied and happy employees (Choudhury, & Mohanty, 2018, p. 291) .

 

Eighth: Gallup Model

 

           According to a report by the Gallup Institute only15% of employees worldwide are engaged at work. Managers everywhere can help solve this problem - and reap the benefits of higher employee engagement (Reilly, 2014). As mention by  Morrison (2016) after extensive research including hundreds of focus groups and thousands of interviews with employees in a variety of industries Gallup came up with the Q12, a 12-question survey that identifies strong feelings of employee engagement. Given this critical situation, over the years, researchers at the institute have tried to develop a model for determining the components of job belonging. According to this model, employees are divided into three groups: disengaged, engaged and not engaged (neutral). Also, meta-analysis of more than 260 research articles by this institute showed that the most important components related to its belonging are: customer ratings , profitability , productivity turnover (for high-turnover and low-turnover organizations) , safety incidents , shrinkage (theft), absenteeism , patient safety incidents and quality (defects)  (Sorenson, 2012 ).

 

Ninth: Imandin, Bisschoff & Botha Model

 

           The goal of these researchers was to provide a model for measuring employees' job belongingness. They identified eleven components by reviewing the research literature and collecting data from university students in South Africa. These components are: Cognitive drivers, Emotional engagement, Behavioral engagement, Feeling valued and involved, Engaged leadership team, Trust and integrity, Nature of job, Connection between individual and company performance,  Career growth opportunities, Stress-free environment & Change management (Imandin, Bisschoff & Botha ,2014, p 523-527).

 

Tenth: Hewitt Model

 

            The Institute of Hewitt started its activities in 1940 in providing management advice to institutions, and its specialists developed a model of job belongingness with six basic components of Work, People, Opportunities, Compensation, Procedures, Quality of Life. According to the experts of this company, the interaction and professional belonging of the employees is the result of individual's interaction with organizational stimuli and business outputs. Of course, when it comes to employee behavior, we are dealing with a combination of components such as emotional commitment, motivation, and organizational citizenship behaviors. However, this company operationalizes employee engagement as a construct of six items composed of three observable facets of “say, stay, and strive” with two items each (Hewitt, 2015).

 

Eleventh: Talent Keeper model

 

TalentKeepers is a global leader in talent management research, award-winning solutions and proven results in increasing organizational performance (Talent Keeper, 2015).  According to this model the four drivers i.e., credible leadership, supportive co-workers, job & carrier satisfaction and high performing organization are the creator of employee engagement. The outcomes suggested by this study by implementing the above mentioned four drivers are committed employees, high performing work force, productive and profitable organization and satisfied and loyal customer (Choudhury, & Mohanty, 2018, p. 292).

 

 

 

 

Twelfth: Chartered Institute of Personnel and Development (CIPD)

 

With more than a century of experience, this institute has tried to provide a relatively accurate conceptual framework of the dimensions of employee belongingness in different institutions. According to the experts of this institute employee engagement goes beyond motivation and simple job satisfaction. It can be seen as a combination of commitment to the organization and its values and a willingness to help colleagues. According to this the CIPD has defined employee engagement as “being positively present during the performance of work by willingly contributing intellectual effort, experiencing positive emotions and meaningful connections to other” (Engage for Success, 2013). As CIPD indicated at its homepage to help identify common factors in employee engagement the CIPD commissioned Kingston University and Ipsos/MORI undertook a survey of employee attitudes. From this research they determined that Engagement can be said to have three dimensions:

 

  • Emotional engagement – being very involved emotionally with one’s work
  • Cognitive engagement – focusing very hard whilst at work
  • Physical engagement – being willing to ‘go the extra mile’ for your employer (CIPD, 2019).

 

Thirteenth: Blessing and White Model

 

         Buck Blessing and Tod White, pioneers in the field of employee engagement, developed the "X" Model of Employee Engagement Equation.  According to Blessing and White, engagement happens when maximum contribution to the organization intersects with maximum satisfaction for the employee (Rice, Marlow & Masarech, 2012). It’s a good explanation for why high contributors might look for work elsewhere and why satisfied employees might not contribute much (Compare Hris, no date). Also, according to this model, employees can be divided into four groups: employees with belonging, employees without belonging, satisfied employees but without cooperation spirit and dissatisfied employees but with cooperation spirit. Therefore, the two basic dimensions of job belonging are cooperation plus satisfaction.

 

Fourteenth: Burke model

 

         According with the researchers and consultants from Burke, a leading international research and consulting firm, there are 6 important engagement components that determine a substantive Employee Engagement Index:

  • Company: satisfaction with the working environment and likeliness to withstand other job offers on the market
  • Manager: satisfaction with the mangers
  • Work group: satisfaction with the current working group: colleagues and managers
  • The job: satisfaction with the job
  • Career/ Profession: satisfaction with the choice of career and career perspectives
  • Customer: Satisfaction with the working relationship had with customers/clients (Chelniciuc, 2010).

According to this model there is a significant link between employee engagement, customer loyalty, and profitability.

 

2) Comparison of models

 

           The results were based on a review of primary and secondary sources leading to 14 models of job belonging. In addition to these models, there are other models but the selected models in this study are more popular and used by various institutions and organizations around the world. Accordingly, in this section, the selected models are compared according to features such as name, year of design, number of components and components’ titles (Table 1). Also, the similarities and differences of the models are determined according to the type of components (Table 2).

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Table 1: Comparison of job belongingness models by year of design, number of components and name of component

Components

Year

Number of

component

Name

No.

Significance, security, accessibility

1990

3

Khan

1

Inspiration and Values, Future Growth/Opportunity, Quality of Work, Enabling Environment, Work/Life Balance and Tangible Rewards

2001

6

Hey Group

2

say satisfied , stay with the company, engaged workforce,

2003

3

RBS

3

Participation in decision making, organizational motivations

2004

2

Robinson

4

Pay and benefits, learning and development opportunities, promotion and advancement, leadership style with mutual trust, balance of value and meaning in work

2007

5

Penna

5

Work , Confidence and trust ,Recognition and rewards, Organizational communication

2007

4

Mercer

6

Achieve results ,Craft strategies , Enliven roles , Excel at work , Get connected , Be authentic , Live recognition , creating fully engaged employee , Serving customers , Develop personally , Attain happiness

2009

12

Zinger

7

customer ratings , profitability , productivity turnover (for high-turnover and low-turnover organizations) , safety incidents , shrinkage (theft), absenteeism , patient safety incidents and quality (defects)

2012

8

Gallup

8

Cognitive drivers, Emotional engagement, Behavioral engagement, Feeling valued and involved, Engaged leadership team, Trust and integrity, Nature of job, Connection between individual and company performance,  Career growth opportunities, Stress-free environment & Change management

2014

10

Imandin, Bisschoff & Botha

9

Work, People, Opportunities, Compensation, Procedures, Quality of Life

2015

6

Hewitt

10

Credible leadership, supportive co-workers, job & carrier satisfaction and high performing organization , committed employees, high performing work force, productive and profitable organization and satisfied and loyal customer

2015

7

Talent Keeper

11

Emotional engagement , Cognitive engagement , Physical engagement

2019

3

CIPD

12

maximum contribution , maximum satisfaction

Unknown

2

Blessing & White

13

Company, Manager, Work group, Job, Career perspectives, Customer

Unknown

6

Burke

14

 

 

            According to the data in Table 1, several cases can be inferred regarding the models of employees’ job belongingness: The first case refers to the increase in the number of models which shows that in an uninterrupted process, managers and decision makers of organizations, institutions and researchers has continued to design new models - considering goals and situations of each organization. The second interesting point is that unlike other existing models related to the field of management and organizational behavior - which are mainly developed by academic researchers - many models of job belongingness have been designed and developed by experts from international private companies and were introduced to the academic world (for example, the models No. 3, 6, 8, 11, 12 & 13). Also during the three decades (from the first model in 1990 to the last model in 2019) the number of components of employees’ job belongingness has increased from a few components to more (from 2 to 12 components). Another point is the increase in the number of components over the last decade, so that recent researchers seem to insist on the role of more components in creating job belongingness than their previous colleagues. Another interesting point that can be made is the division of job belonging’ components into three general groups: First, the components that are related to employees, such as the opportunity for career advancement, benefits and rewards, and future career prospects. Second, the components those are relevant to the organization and increase job belonging such as effective leadership, effective organization, and maximum cooperation with employees, and third, the intermediate components which require employees to work with the organization simultaneously such as supportive colleagues, committed employees, and customer commitment. Considering these points, the models can be compared with each other in terms of component similarity (Table 2):

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Table 2: Comparison of models in terms of similarities and differences of job belonging components

Security

Rewards and benefits

Quality of work

Emotional belonging

Full cooperation

Effective leadership

Efficiency

Customer -oriented

Trust

Possibility of progress

Participate in decision making

Values

Components/

Models

*

 

 

*

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Khan

 

*

*

 

 

 

 

 

 

*

 

*

Hey Group

 

 

 

*

*

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

RBS

 

*

 

*

*

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Robinson

 

*

 

*

 

*

 

 

*

*

*

 

Penna

 

*

*

 

 

 

 

 

*

 

 

 

Mercer

*

 

*

*

*

 

*

 

 

*

 

 

Zinger

 

 

*

 

 

 

*

*

 

 

*

 

Gallup

 

 

*

*

 

*

 

 

*

*

 

 

Imandin,

Bisschoff & Botha

 

*

*

 

 

 

 

 

 

*

 

 

Hewitt

 

*

 

 

 

*

*

*

 

 

 

*

Talent Keeper

*

 

 

*

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

CIPD

 

 

 

 

*

 

 

 

 

*

 

 

Blessing & White

 

 

*

 

 

*

 

*

 

 

 

 

Burke

2

6

7

7

4

4

3

3

3

6

2

3

Total

 

           Examining the components of job belonging shows their diversity and indicates that designers have used many similar or different words for job belonging components. However, with more scrutiny, it can be seen that attention to the values ​​of organization, maximum participation, professional development prospects, trust, respect of customer, productivity, effective leadership, full cooperation of employees with the organization, emotional belonging, rewards and benefits and quality of work are the most important components that have been emphasized by designers. The data in Table 2 show that among these components, four components of emotional belonging, quality of work, the possibility of progress and rewards and benefits are emphasized in more than half of the models. In fact, the feeling of belonging can be considered as one of the most important components of employees’ job belonging which originates from the human emotional need to be accepted in a group or organization and creates a feeling of security, care and love. Also, the quality of job in term of degree of importance of duty in organization and level of leaders and managers’ attention to work can increase job belongingness. Two other important variables, namely the possibility of progress and type and amount of rewards and benefits in the field of management science have been constantly considered and the results of this research also show the attention of designers to these variables. In addition, of the 14 models, about one-third emphasizes the role of components such as effective leadership, customer focus, and productivity in creating job belongingness.

 

  1. Conclusion

 

        The purpose of present research was to investigate the employee’s job belongingness models to identify and explain a suitable model for Iranian organizations and institutions from a comparative perspective. Research findings show that many models are designed by researchers who have worked in private companies. This finding is consistent with findings of Green, Gino, Satas (2017), Fernandez & Rajan (2015), Burke & Al-kot (2010), and Freeney & Tiernan (2009). Of course, the fact that the majority of designers have worked in the private sector then to academia can have both positive and negative aspects. On the positive side, these designers are more familiar with the business environment and pay more attention to issues such as quality of work, the possibility of progress, rewards and benefits. This finding has also been considered in the research of Escalera-Reyes (2020) and Walton, Cohen, Cwir, & Spencer (2012). On the negative side, we can point to the lack of familiarity of designers of current models with non-profit organizations such as governmental organizations.  This finding supports finding of Maier, Meyer, & Steinbereithner (2014).

 

            The findings of the present study also showed that model designers did not pay much attention to components such as values, participation in decision-making, and job security - which are mainly considered by employees of governmental organizations. This finding has been supported in previous research (Vanam 2009, Hallberg et al. 2007, Mauno، Kinnunen & Rukolainen, 2007, Seijts & Crim , 2006, Bakker, Gierveld & Van Rijswijk, 2006). In addition, the research findings indicate the existence of a fundamental vacuum namely "lack of attention to social and organizational culture" in all selected models. The findings of Saks & Rotman (2006), Richman (2006), Schaufeli, et al (2002); Hughes، & Rog (2008), Kandulapati  & Manchala (2011), Issakhani (2013), Roshannejad et al. (2012), Issakhani et al. (2013), and Naghizadeh Bafi et al. (2013) have not been considered this fundamental vacuum, although Almasi (2015) refers to the role of culture and social capital to some extent. In fact, none of the designers have paid attention to the role of social culture and organizational culture in increasing or decreasing of employee’s job belongingness. This is important because we are trying to find a suitable model for Iranian governmental and non-governmental organizations and institutions. Another point that should be noted as a limitation of the research is the lack of similar comparative research. Therefore, the present researchers were not able to show the alignment of some of their findings with the results of previous research. The last point is the existence of positive and negative components in some models, which means that the designers of models such as Imandin, Bischoff, Butta and Kallup have also mentioned the role of negative components in job belongingness. According to the research findings, it is suggested to policymakers of governmental and non-governmental organizations in Iran to increase employees' job belongingness through more attention on four important factors namely emotional attachment, quality of work, possibility of progress and reward, which were emphasized by most models. It is also suggested that the current status of these basic components in Iranian organizations be assessed separately. In addition, Iranian researchers are suggested to pay attention to the components in the selected models and consider the role and effect of social culture and organizational culture components on employees’ job belongingness.

 

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