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Health Services Research & Development

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2007 HSR&D National Meeting Abstract

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National Meeting 2007

1045 — Workplace Factors that Increase Employee Satisfaction and Performance

Mohr DC (Center for Organization, Leadership and Management Research) , Meterko M (Center for Organization, Leadership and Management Research), Charns M (Center for Organization, Leadership and Management Research), Dyrenforth S (National Center for Organizational Development), Osatuke K (National Center for Organizational Development)

The objective of the study was to identify factors that influence changes in employee satisfaction and self-reported quality of work performance. A large body of literature suggests a link between job satisfaction, self-reported performance, and customer satisfaction. Thus, knowing what factors drive change in these areas could serve as leverage points to allow managers to improve workgroup outcomes.

The study utilized data from two consecutive administrations of the VA All Employee Survey (AES), a census survey consisting of three sections focused on individual satisfaction, workgroup processes, and organization culture. During the years in question the AES achieved response rates of 52% (2004) and 71% (2006). Items were rated on a five-point scale and either used as stand-alone measures or combined in multi-item scales. For the present study, individual employee responses were aggregated to the workgroup level (n=2376). Two outcome measures were created using the difference scores of matched workgroup reports of overall job satisfaction and quality of work. Predictor variables that hypothetically can be influenced were changes in: workplace civility, management for achievement, physical material and resources, job demands, teamwork culture, and bureaucratic culture. Control variables in the model were organizational complexity level, teaching affiliation, urban or rural distinction, and geographical region. Change in outcome variables were regressed in a mixed-effects model with workgroups nested within facility.

Improvement in job satisfaction was significantly predicted by increases in management for achievement (b=.27), resources (b=.22), teamwork culture (b=.24), workplace civility (b=.16), and decreases in job demands (B=-.14). The pseudo r-square indicated 55% of the variance was explained. Improvement in perceived performance was significantly predicted by increases in resources (b=.25), workplace civility (b=.09), bureaucratic culture (b=.10), and decreases in teamwork culture (b=-.07), all of which explained 15% of the variance.

Results indicated that changes in workplace civility, physical and material resources were significant predictors of the two outcome measures. Workgroups where these factors increased also demonstrated gains in job satisfaction and perceived performance. A mixed finding for culture was observed. A change in teamwork culture was positively related to a change in job satisfaction, but negatively related to change in quality of work. Workgroups that reported an increase in bureaucratic culture, on the other hand, showed a positive change in perceived performance.

Interventions to improve workplace civility, increased management involvement and support, and resources are likely to translate into higher rates of employee satisfaction and delivery of care.

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