FOUNDATIONSOF KNOWLEDGE AND PROFESSIONAL SKILLS
FlexibleWork Practices are popular, provided by their benefits (Benner2002).From the workers’ point of view, FWPs brings about higher careersatisfaction and low work stress. From the company’s point of view,FWPs facilitates the employment and retention of highly qualifiedstaff, provided by the fact that they are highly motivated by themodern world. Incorporating FWPs, hence provides a win-win situationfor both employees and their organizations (Benner2002).Despite, their benefits, few studies on how FWPs influence theemployee’s success exists. There are conflicting findings onwhether FWPs have a negative or positive consequence, or penalties orpremiums.
Accordingto evidence that FWPs enhance performance, some researchers havetheorized and concluded that employees using FWPs gain premiums,since they earn more salary than the non-users. In other studies,researchers have found that users of FWPs lack commitment (Iqbal2010).In another study, mothers using FWPs receive career penalties,because FWPs negatively affect the salary growth (Perlow1997).
Thisstudy has sought insights into the co-relationship between the usesof FWPs and work success by taking managers’ views for the uses ofemployee’s FWPs. The theory on attributions was integrated withthe signaling theory to theorize the interpretation of employees,FWPs uses to signal high commitment when their FWPs attribution areaimed at improving productivity, but signal low commitment when FWPsattributions are only aimed at personal accommodations. A commonmechanism of perceived commitment was identified on the way FWPsaffects the career success (Niemi2012).
Thefirst study involved a field study of Fortune 500 where FWPs weredetermined if they have negative or positive consequence on theperceived commitments, based on manager’s attributions and whetherperceived commitments shapes the success of employees’ careers.
Thefield study was accompanied by a lab experiment that provided thecauses of FWP s uses and attributions impacts (Niemi2010).
Thepresent study has expanded the extant theory through, attributioneffects on the FWP uses and career success, low commitment perceptionof the negative effects of FWPs, economic and psychology perspectiveson the consequence of FWPS, and enjoyment of FWPs benefits whileavoiding work stress.
Researchhas brought about two contradictions in regard to FWP uses and thecareer success. One study support suggests that FWPs enhanceemployee performance and the success of the careers.
Someemployees may face few interruptions hence enhancing theirproductivity. Likewise, some employees who are flexible withschedules adapts to hours to achieve business organization’s needs.The positive relationship between FWP and the performance illustratesthat FWPs enhance the success of careers, provided that highperforming employees may move up the organization ranks (Reilly2012).
Furtherstudies have shown that employees who are more flexible in theirschedules earns more salaries than those who do not incorporate FWPs.Despite the evidence of FWPs facilitating the career success, the lowcommitment signal theory suggests that FWPs use consequences arenegative (Reilly 2012). According to signaling theory, mangersinterpret employees’ FWP uses to signal employees’responsibilities diminishing their commitment. Managers thus penalizeemployees using FWPs by not raising their wages, promotion and otherperformance rewards. The research has indicated that FWPs leads topositive or negative career consequences. Previous works have notissued evidence concerning the inconsistent results, but has providedtwo findings that are based on the belief that employees incorporatesFWPs for their comforts (Skorstad 2009).
Extanttheory indicates that managers attributions on employees have impactson the perceptions of employees’ commitments and tendency toprovide employees with career rewards (Skorstad 2009). Therefore,managers’ attributions on employees’ use of FWP help to explainhow it incurs career premiums verses penalties.
Hypothesis1: Managers perceive the workers who incorporates FWPs as committedin their work than workers who does not use FWPs even when themanager’s attribution is only high, when their personal commitmentis controlled.
Hypothesis2: Managers perceive the workers using FWPs as lowly committed thanthe workers not using FWPs, when manger’s life’s FWPs attributesare only high whenever worker’s reported commitments arecontrolled.
Hypothesis3: The perception of workers’ commitment by a manager relatespositively to their success indicators e.g. job level.
Hypothesis4: Any commitment viewed will mediate the impacts of the workers’FWP uses and the manger’s FWP attributes on the success of aworker’s career.
Methodsof Data Collection
Themethods of collecting data were the carrying out of online surveysand the filling of questionnaires on the FWPs uses, attributions,commitments and success of the career with a Fortune 500. Datacollected the salary, job group and performance rating.
Inthe study, the FWP uses to the commitment were insignificant, and,hence there was no difference between FWPs users and non users. Productivity attributions in relation to commitment were high amongworkers showing that productivity attributes are positivelycorrelated to the commitment among workers using FWPs. In the otherside, personal life attributes in relation to the commitment were insignificant.
Accordingto hypothesis 1, the managers see FWP users as mostly committed thanthose who does not use it when the productivity attributes are high. From the test, it was realized that the hypothesis 1 is true when theproductivity is high but insignificant when the productivity was low.Hence hypothesis, one was supported.
Hypothesis2 states that mangers perceives users of FWPs as lowly committed thanthose who don’t use it when FWP attributes are only high. FWP useswere insignificant to the personal attributes, hence hypothesis 2 wasunsupported.
Hypothesis3 was supported since the commitment to the salary, job group andrewards were significant. On the hypothesis 4, it can be concludedthat indirect effects have significant to high productivityattributes. The FWP uses, therefore, are significant indirectly tothe effects on salary, job group and rewards through the commitment.On the other hand, low productivity attributes do not affect the FWPuses impact on the salary, job groups and rewards.
Theflexible work practices are increasingly used in our workplaces, butdifferent literature paints A different picture of how their usesaffect the success of the career. This study has shaded light on thepast inconsistencies by incorporating the psychological theory ofattribution with economic theory on signaling.
Inboth field and lab experiment study, managers perceive the use of FWPby employees to signal a commitment whenever they are makingproductivity attributes for FWP and that commitment influence theircareer success.
Itwas also found that the employee’s FWP may be interpreted as asignal of low commitment whenever they are making personal attributesfor FWP utilization, however, the personal attributes does not haveand negative effects in both field and experimental settings.
Thecurrent research has indicated how FWPs enhance the careers ofemployees. It has integrated the signaling and attribution theoriesto show that managers perceive the employee’s FWPs as a commitment,regardless of managers’ personal attributions or productivity foremployees’ FWPs shaping their career success. The studies havesupported the hypothesis that FWPs leads to premiums when managerscomes up with productivity attributes and support also the hypothesisthat FWPs uses leads to penalties whenever a manager makes personalattributes.
Flexiblework practices benefit the workers and companies similarly byfacilitating suitable job attitudes resulting in higher productivity,while minimizing job stress, but little information is available onhow it influences the success of careers. In this study, therelationship between FWP uses and job success with the introductionof the FWP Mnager’s attributes. It was realized that FWPsfacilitates the success of careers when is geared to the quest ofincreasing productivity, but it also constraint the success ofcareers when its attributions are towards personal gains in somesettings. Therefore, studying the FWP attributes aids in theunderstanding of when FWPs are the source of premiums and penaltiesfor the workers who uses them.
Productivityand personal life has been much focused since there is enoughevidence indicating that increase in productivity and lifeaccommodations are the reasons behind the uses of FWPs by workers.In addition, the attributes of FWP are measured in study 1 while manipulation are determined in study 2 and involved broad reasonsfor the uses of FWP.
Forinstance, personal life measure and the life manipulation frame theuses of WFPs to meet the needs of childcare or fit to the son’scareer. Likewise, the FWP attributes such as the autonomy exists. Thetheory used suggest that FWPs is positively related to theorganizations desire, but negatively related when it is attributed topersonal desires.
Inthis study, the attribution of the FWP users were not investigated.Therefore further work can be investigated on whether the managerscan come up with attributions on why workers do not put intopractice the FWPs and the consequences related to attributions forFWP non-users.
Inthis research, it was found that FWP attribution towards the motivesfor personal accommodation leads to career penalties in the labexperiment. Hence, more research needs to be done on the moderatorsof FWP consequence attributed to accommodation motives. Suchmoderators which need to be studied includes managers’ values,personal life culture and common or rare FWP attributions.
Sincethe relationship between FWP and the success of the careers have beenexamined, manager’s FWP attributions needs to researched on. Fromthe study, worker’s FWP desires are not related to the theirmanagers’ attributes suggesting that other information affects theFWP attributions. Managers may make productivity attributions whenemployees have traits such as complacency and positiveness. Furtherresearch on the manger’s FWP attributions will show which kinds ofemployees may get career premiums or penalties resulting from the FWPuses.
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Iqbal,Mickey. ITVirtualization Best Practices a Lean, Green Virtualized Data CenterApproach.Ketchum, MC Press Online, 2010.
Niemi,Hannele. Miracleof Education the Principles and Practices of Teaching and Learning inFinnish Schools.Rotterdam: SensePublishers, 2012.
Perlow,Leslie A. FindingTime: How Corporations, Individuals, and Families Can Benefit fromNew Work Practices.Ithaca, NY: ILR Press, 1997.
Reilly,Nora P. Workand Quality of Life Ethical Practices in Organizations.Dordrecht: Springer Netherlands, 2012.
Skorstad,Egil. FlexibleOrganizations and the New Working Life a European Perspective.Farnham, England: Ashgate, 2009.