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EMPLOYEE SATISFACTION

INTRODUCTION
No company cannot achieve its goals if it does not have the right set of employees. The employees in a company largely determine the success of the company. This is the reason why companies put in extensive efforts in choosing candidates for their company. Most of the times, skills and knowledge of the employee is considered to gauge his performance in the company. One factor that is being overlooked by most of the company owners is employee satisfaction. Various surveys and researches have shown that employee satisfaction plays a pivotal role in performance of the candidate. If any company wants to draw out the best from its employees then it should provide best means to satisfy the need and requirements of its customers. Before one can know various ways to facilitate employee satisfaction, it is essential to understand what does it actually mean. DEFINITION OF EMPLOYEE SATISFACTION Employee satisfaction is the term used to describe a situation when employees are satisfied and contented with his job and the office environment. Importance of Employee Satisfaction Employee Satisfaction is of utmost importance in any organization be it small or large. Thinking that employee satisfaction is important only for the employee then it is not right. It is equally important for the organization for which the employee is working as well. The following points will show the importance of employee satisfaction easily. In light of the organization: 1. It enhances employee retention and the company does not need to train employees repeatedly. 2. The overall productivity of the company is increased and it assists in achieving the goals of the company. 3. When employees are satisfied with their job they deal with customers in a better manner and thus customer satisfaction is achieved to great extent. 4. It helps the company in getting better services and products from its employees. 5. Money spent on training new candidates and recruitment of new candidates can be saved extensively.

In light of the employee:


1. When the employee gets satisfactory services from the company initially, he tends to believe that same treatment would be offered in long run. 2. Employee would start taking interest in his work instead of worrying about other issues. 3. The employee starts feeling a sense of responsibility towards the organization. 4. He deals with customers in a better way and builds strong relations with them. 5. They would try to produce better results in order to get appreciation from the company. HISTORY The assessment of job satisfaction through employee anonymous surveys became commonplace in the 1930s. Although prior to that time there was the beginning of interest in employee attitudes, there were only a handful of studies published. Latham and Budworth note that Uhrbrock in 1934 was one of the first psychologists to use the newly developed attitude measurement techniques to assess factory worker attitudes. They also note that in 1935 Hoppock conducted a study that focused explicitly on job satisfaction that is affected by both the nature of the job and relationships with coworkers and supervisors. THEORIES OF EMPLOYEE SATISTFACTION

Affect theory
Edwin A. Lockes Range of Affect Theory (1976) is arguably the most famous job satisfaction model. The main premise of this theory is that satisfaction is determined by a discrepancy between what one wants in a job and what one has in a job. Further, the theory states that how much one values a given facet of work (e.g. the degree of autonomy in a position) moderates how satisfied/dissatisfied one becomes when expectations are/arent met. When a person values a particular facet of a job, his satisfaction is more greatly impacted both positively (when expectations are met) and negatively (when expectations are not met), compared to one who doesnt value that facet. To illustrate, if Employee A values autonomy in the workplace and Employee B is indifferent about autonomy, then Employee A would be more satisfied in a position that offers a high degree of autonomy and less satisfied in a position with little or no autonomy compared to Employee B. This theory also states that too much of a particular facet will produce stronger feelings of dissatisfaction the more a worker values that facet.

Dispositional approach
The dispositional approach suggests that individuals vary in their tendency to be satisfied with their jobs, in other words, job satisfaction is to some extent an individual trait. This approach became a notable

explanation of job satisfaction in light of evidence that job satisfaction tends to be stable over time and across careers and jobs. Research also indicates that identical twins raised apart have similar levels of job satisfaction. A significant model that narrowed the scope of the dispositional approach was the Core Self-evaluations Model, proposed by Timothy A. Judge, Edwin A. Locke, and Cathy C. Durham in 1997. Judge et al. argued that there are four Core Self-evaluations that determine ones disposition towards job satisfaction: self-esteem, general self-efficacy, locus of control, and neuroticism. This model states that higher levels of self-esteem (the value one places on his/her self) and general self-efficacy (the belief in ones own competence) lead to higher work satisfaction. Having an internal locus of control (believing one has control over her\his own life, as opposed to outside forces having control) leads to higher job satisfaction. Finally, lower levels of neuroticism lead to higher job satisfaction.

Equity theory
Equity Theory shows how a person views fairness in regard to social relationships such as with an employer. A person identifies the amount of input (things gained) from a relationship compared to the output (things given) to produce an input/output ratio. They then compare this ratio to the ratio of other people in deciding whether or not they have an equitable relationship.Equity Theory suggests that if an individual thinks there is an inequality between two social groups or individuals, the person is likely to be distressed because the ratio between the input and the output are not equal. For example, consider two employees who work the same job and receive the same pay and benefits. If one individual gets a pay raise for doing the same work than the other, then the less benefited individual will become distressed in his workplace. If, on the other hand, one individual gets a pay raise and new responsibilities, then the feeling of equity will be maintained. Other psychologists have extended the equity theory, suggesting three behavioral response patterns to situations of perceived equity or inequity (Huseman, Hatfield, & Mile, 1987; O'Neil & Mone 1998). These three types are benevolent, equity sensitive, and entitled. The level by each type affects motivation, job satisfaction, and job performance. 1. Benevolent-Satisfied when they are under-rewarded compared with co-workers 2. Equity sensitive-Believe everyone should be fairly rewarded 3. Entitled-People believe that everything they receive is their just due

Discrepancy theory
The concept of discrepancy theory explains the ultimate source of anxiety and dejection. An individual, who has not fulfilled his responsibility feels the sense of anxiety and regret for not performing well, they will also feel dejection due to not being able to achieve their hopes and aspirations. According to this theory, all individuals will learn what their obligations and responsibilities for a particular function, over a time period, and if they fail to fulfill those obligations then they are punished. Over time, these duties and obligations consolidate to form an abstracted set of principles, designated as a self-guide.Agitation and anxiety are the main responses when an individual fails to achieve the obligation or responsibility. This theory also explains that if achievement of the obligations is obtained then the reward can be praise, approval, or love. These achievements and aspirations also form an abstracted set of principles, referred to as the ideal self guide.When the individual fails to obtain these rewards, they begin to have feelings of dejection, disappointment, or even depression.

Two-factor theory (motivator-hygiene theory)


Frederick Herzbergs Two-factor theory (also known as Motivator Hygiene Theory) attempts to explain satisfaction and motivation in the workplace.This theory states that satisfaction and dissatisfaction are driven by different factors motivation and hygiene factors, respectively. An employees motivation to work is continually related to job satisfaction of a subordinate. Motivation can be seen as an inner force that drives individuals to attain personal and organizational goals (Hoskinson, Porter, & Wrench, p. 133). Motivating factors are those aspects of the job that make people want to perform, and provide people with satisfaction, for example achievement in work, recognition, promotion opportunities. These motivating factors are considered to be intrinsic to the job, or the work carried out. Hygiene factors include aspects of the working environment such as pay, company policies, supervisory practices, and other working conditions. While Herzberg's model has stimulated much research, researchers have been unable to reliably empirically prove the model, with Hackman & Oldham suggesting that Herzberg's original formulation of the model may have been a methodological artifact. Furthermore, the theory does not consider individual differences, conversely predicting all employees will react in an identical manner to changes in motivating/hygiene factors. Finally, the model has been criticised in that it does not specify how motivating/hygiene factors are to be measured.

Job characteristics model


Hackman & Oldham proposed the Job Characteristics Model, which is widely used as a framework to study how particular job characteristics impact on job outcomes, including job satisfaction. The model

states that there are five core job characteristics (skill variety, task identity, task significance, autonomy, and feedback) which impact three critical psychological states (experienced meaningfulness, experienced responsibility for outcomes, and knowledge of the actual results), in turn influencing work outcomes (job satisfaction, absenteeism, work motivation, and performance). The five core job characteristics can be combined to form a motivating potential score (MPS) for a job, which can be used as an index of how likely a job is to affect an employee's attitudes and behaviors.Not everyone is equally affected by the MPS of a job. People who are high in growth need strength (the desire for autonomy, challenge and development of new sills on the job) are particularly affected by job characteristics. A meta-analysis of studies that assess the framework of the model provides some support for the validity of the JCM.

FACTORS INFLUENCING EMPLOYEE SATISFACTION

Various factors exist in an organization that contributes to area of employee satisfaction. Following are listed factors affecting employee satisfaction. They are: The brand name of the organization is of utmost importance to the employees and it is considered when employee satisfaction is considered. The aims and objectives of the organization where an employee works are likely to affect employee satisfaction. Salary and wage is one of the most important factors behind employee satisfaction. The salary should always be in accordance to the position of the employee in the company. Rewards and penalties are other important things that affect level of satisfaction of an employee in his job. The kind of treatment given by the supervisor to the employee largely determines his satisfaction level. It is always desired to treat employees in a good manner. Working methods of the organization determines the satisfactory level of an employee. It is true that every organization has its own working methods but some freedom should also be given to the employees. It is essential to check that the personality of the employee matches the type of job being allotted to him. Expectations of the employee should also be in accordance to the level of organization in which he or she is working.

IMPROVING EMPLOYEE SATISFACTION


If some organization does not see employee satisfaction amongst its employees then there is nothing to be worried about. By following some steps, the organization can improve employee satisfaction. One of the best possible ways is to conduct a feedback program. During this program, the organization should take feedback from the employees so that they can know what the requirements of the employees are and what exactly they are getting in the organization.

METHODS OF IMPROVING EMPLOYEE SATISFACTION


A few years ago when employees became dissatisfied with their organization they would quit and get another job. Today, with placement opportunities very low and unemployment extremely high, very few people opt to quit and leave. As a result something much worse is happening within organizations. Employees quit, but they stay. In the last year, overall job satisfaction in the U.S. has declined significantly. Employees feel stuck in their current jobs and their dissatisfaction with the organizations they work for increases. However, not all organizations are experiencing these dismal results. A recent assessment of employee satisfaction by one of our clients showed a significant improvement over past years, though this company was not immune to the effects of the recession. Examination of the data showed 7 factors that created this positive increase in their satisfaction, even during the economys poorest times.

CONSISTENT VALUES In some organizations, employees observe that core values appear to be abandoned when the economy is poor. Leadership values seemed to apply in good times, but to dwindle or even disappear during stress. This organization, however, held tightly to its core values as the economy turned. Employees began to more fully appreciate those values as well when they saw what was happening in other companies during difficult times.

LONG TERM FOCUS. This company clearly saw the recession as a temporary problem, and maintained its focus on the long term objectives. The recession had a significant impact on the long term objectives, but it created new opportunities as well. Employees dont mind going through difficult times when they believe there is a brighter future ahead.

LOCAL LEADERSHIP Company recognized that the major source of satisfaction or dissatisfaction came from what happen in each work group. Every manager and supervisor received a clear assessment of the satisfaction of their employees and was challenged to find opportunities to improve.

CONTINUOUS COMMUNICATION People tend to communicate less during bad times, when in actuality, they need to communicate even more. This company increased its efforts to communicate and share important information. If there was no good news to share, they would share the reality of their current situation.

COLLABORATION Groups made significant improvements in their ability to share resources and work together. This reduced costs and increased efficiency.

OPPORTUNITIES FOR DEVELOPMENT Because the pace of work was slower, people had the opportunity to learn new skills and develop new capabilities. This organization took advantage of the slower time by challenging employees with stretch job assignments. They also increased formal training.

SPEED AND AGILITY With fewer budgets, everyone saw the need to move quickly and take advantage of opportunities in the marketplace. Speed of decision was emphasized. Clearly, it is a fallacy to assume that bad times equate to lower job satisfaction. As our research illustrates, it is simply not true. The organization we described made significant gains in satisfaction and commitment during one of the worst financial times in history by doing the right things, and doing them well. These improvements helped the company create substantial financial momentum during the challenging economy as well.

CONCLUSION
From the above set of information, the level of employee satisfaction in an organization can be gauged to great extent. The organization can also make further improvements to the existing environment if required. Many organizations wait for an economic and business turnaround to measure the satisfaction of their employees, but they are missing a great opportunity. By assessing now, they can build on the current opinions in any economy and can make the changes that will help them capitalize on better financial times. The activity also instills greater trust: By asking for opinions now, you are showing your employees that youre not just asking for what you want to hear, but rather asking for what you need to be hearing as well. So what are you waiting for? If you value your employees satisfaction, the time to be asking for their feedback is now.

REFERENCES
1. Spector, P.E. (1997). Job satisfaction: Application, assessment, causes and consequences. 2. Thompson, E.R.; Phua F.T.T. (2012). "A Brief Index of Affective Job Satisfaction". Group & Organization Management 3. Moorman, R.H. (1993). "The influence of cognitive and affective based job satisfaction measures on the relationship between satisfaction and organizational citizenship behavior".Human Relations 4. Spector, P.E. (1997). Job satisfaction: Application, assessment, causes and consequences. 5. Spector, P.E. (1997). Job satisfaction: Application, assessment, causes and consequences. 6. Spector, P.E. (1997). Job satisfaction: Application, assessment, causes and consequences. 7. Kalleberg, A.L. (1977). "Work values and job rewardsTheory of job satisfaction". American 8. Spector, P.E. (1997). Job satisfaction: Application, assessment, causes and consequences.