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CHAPTER 2

REVIEW OF THE RELATED LITERATURE

2.0 INTRODUCTION
The previous chapter gave the introduction to the core concepts, that is,
the concept of quality of work-life and the socio-psychological determinants of
the quality of work-life. This chapter discusses the origin and development of the
concept of QWL over the years and presents the review of the related studies
conducted in India and abroad in the field of quality of work life and its
correlates. It contains a parsimonious list of empirical research conducted in this
field. Studies have not been segregated into studies conducted in India and
studies conducted abroad. They are arranged in chronological order from the
latest to the oldest under year wise subheadings.
2.1 ORIGIN AND DEVELOPMENT OF QWL
It was in the beginning of twentieth century, Taylor (1911), popularly
known as father of scientific management and prophet of efficiency
developed Principles of Scientific Management. His brilliant argument on
management as an exact discipline of study similar to natural sciences is still
debated. Even in 21st century, the assumptions underlying the principles of
scientific management form the basis of designing work in most of the
organizations all over the world. The classical approach to job design of
scientific management focused mainly on division of labor or work

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specialization, hierarchy in organization, close monitoring and supervision of


employees, and one best way of doing work (Tripathi, 2003). It is believed that
early acceptance of the principles of scientific management by American firms
gave them a competitive advantage over foreign firms which made the American
manufacturing efficiency an envy of the world , at least for a period of fifty years
or so. Though this approach could bring several benefits to organizations and
society, the disadvantage has been its high human cost. The highly specialized
jobs led the workers to social isolation from their fellow workers, weakened their
community of interest in the whole product, and deskilled them to such an extent
that they lost pride in their job. In a system of hierarchy workers totally depend
on their superior, it is always the superior who initiates actions and controls the
work environment. Close supervision further, accentuates workers dependence
on their supervisors (Tripathi, 2003). In such a system, employees lack
opportunity to use their brain to develop new skills and become versatile. The
significance of human resource was not properly recognized and appreciated
because of which employees lost interest in job. This resulted in high turnover
and absenteeism bringing quality decline and worker alienation. The classical
approach to management completely overlooked the fact that human beings are
free willed entities who can act upon their own volition in defiance of scientific
laws governing human behavior.
Feelings of meaninglessness and consequent alienation are likely to be
greater where the jobs and functions of workers are highly standardized and
where the worker has little or no control over his immediate work environment.
Meaninglessness and self-estrangement increase with the degree of automation
and mechanization involved (Blauner, 1964). The best example for impact of
technology on people is the traditional assembly line production process. Study
in a car assembly plant in the United States revealed that in spite of high pay and
job security, people reacted negatively to mass production process (Blauner,
1964). M for man was considered as a mere factor of production like the other

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Ms, namely, money, machinery and materials. Employees were treated as


administrative overheads that figured on the left side of the ledger. The situation
was no different in India. Factors such as carrot and stick policy, autocratic
attitude, rigid supervision and control policies, age old motivational techniques
ruled the sky for a painfully long time. The efforts of M.N. Roy, Dange, N.M.
Joshi, V.V. Giri and lately Dutta Samant have gone a long way in improving the
plight of workers in India. Workers in organized industries have become more
vociferous, united and hence strong in their demands for better status, enhanced
wages, and benefits. The establishments of white collar unions have changed the
management of human resources in bureaucratic organizations quite drastically
in recent times. Today the personnel functions have an important bearing on the
success of the organization because it directly affects the bottom line by
enhancing profits and reducing operating and labor costs. Changing
governmental requirements, increasing demand for more skilled and better
motivated work force and intensifying domestic and foreign competition are
some of the very important factors that have contributed to the growing
importance of man management in modern organizations. With the institution of
HRD ministry in the union cabinet, politicians, academicians, governmental
agencies and the general public have now started showing exclusive interest on
the HRM functions all over India. The press and the media have taken up issues
concerning personnel more diligently and enthusiastically. A number of courses
and research projects have designed throughout India in various universities and
academic institutions reflecting the growing interest in the field.
Moreover, as a result of the spread of mass education, employees have
become more educated, affluent, skilled and unionized, bargaining collectively
with the management to protect their interests through unions and associations.
As such, the above dysfunctional consequences of work are unacceptable by the
enlightened employees of the modern era. Jobs can never be designed only from
the point of view of technology forgetting the human factor involved in it. More

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humanized jobs which can satisfy the workers higher level needs, employ their
higher level skills and make them better citizens, spouse and parents should be
developed (Tripathi, 2003). Jobs need to be excellent from the point of view of
technology and human needs. Traditional job designs should be replaced with
enriched job designs. This demand for redesigning of jobs has come to be known
as Quality of Work Life (QWL). It enjoins the management to treat the workers
as human resources that are to be developed rather than simply used (Tripathi,
2003). Enhancement of human dignity and all round development of employees
in work place leads to greater efficiency and effectiveness of an organization.
The concept of quality of work-life originated as the part of a movement
that began in the United States in the 1960s and 1970s. The purpose was to
initiate dialogue and encourage the theoretical exploration of ways of making the
working environment a more humane situation for workers (Davis and Cherns,
1975; Levine, 1983; Considine and Callus, 2001; Huzzard, 2003). Concerns
about working conditions were triggered by rapid advancements in technology
which saw a greater de-skilling, dehumanization, alienation and objectification of
labor under Taylorist and Fordist influences (Davis and Cherns, 1975; Levine,
1983; Huzzard, 2003; Green, 2005).Slowly, but steadily, there were changes in
management practices in organizations, consequences of which was mobilization
and full use of people in organizations activities. The companies, instead of
investing directly in products and services, are investing in people who
understand, know how to create, develop and improve those products and
services. (Zanetti, 2002).
The term QWL was first used in the late 1960s, originating with General
Motors and the United Auto Workers, to describe the workers level of job
satisfaction. Irving Bluestone coined the term QWL, which began as a variable
expressing the level of worker satisfaction and development into an approach and
series of programs designed ultimately to increase worker productivity (Goode,
1989).

Labor-management

cooperation

guided

the

development

and

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implementation of these early QWL efforts, resulting in workplaces where


employees participated in problem solving and decision-making efforts to
improve their work lives (Schalock and Begab, 1990). In addition, managements
attitudes became more concerned with the individuals welfare, stressing positive
inter personal relationships and overall improved working conditions (Bowditch
and Bruno, 1982; Goode, 1989).
In the mid 1970s, QWL was considered in light of specific changes and
methods that could be instituted in companies not only to enhance bottom line
productivity, but also to increase employee identification and a sense of
belonging and pride in their work (Davis and Cherns, 1975; Sashkin and Burke,
1987). Examples of these approaches include work teams, autonomous groups,
job enrichment and socio-technical change (Gadon, 1984, Charland, 1986). No
doubt, such approaches can be very effective, but must not be seen as cure calls
that can be introduced and implemented in a connect the dots fashion. Neither
should it be treated as a device to overcome certain specified problems or
accepted as desirable when clear-cut need is identified. In such an approach,
QWL interventions become an activity with a definite, limited objective; once
implemented, the effort is discontinued. But the widely shared belief among the
industrial psychologists is that work should be morally desirable so that people
enjoy it. The plea is to everybody concerned with the world of work to take more
active and vigorous steps than at present to make work more appealing and
interesting for those who do it. Therefore the task of making work more likeable
has increasingly been discussed within the points of reference supplied by the
phrase, quality of work life (Orpen, 1981). Furthermore, nowadays it is possible
to realize a differentiated approach regarding peoples Quality of Life (QoL),
indicating a valuation in factors inherent to the human being, like satisfaction
level, professional and personal achievement, good relation with society and
access to culture and leisure as real examples of well being (Timossi et al.,
2008).

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Thus, the discourse on QWL is not new to management theorists and


professionals. Lots of research works have been carried out in different parts of
the world on QWL since 1989 and since 1996, research works were extended to
production engineering as well. In general the researches about the QWL have as
purpose, the comprehension regarding individual situations of workers in their
labor environment, including behavioral aspects and individual satisfaction
(Frana, 2004). Literature on QWL is enriched with different models which are
frequently used by research workers in their studies. Some of them are: Hezberg
(1959), Walton (1975), Hackman and Oldham (1975), Westley (1979), Wether
and Davis (1983), and Fernandez (1996).
It should be remembered that the concept of work and its purpose have
been evolved over time. Work is not a simple instrument or a means of
subsistence anymore; it is now a multifactor process, in which the human being
is placed as a driving centre (Tomossi, et al., 2008). Genesis of the concept of
QWL followed the work evolution, and has its focus centered on the individual
employee. The concern is to provide every worker with good working
environment so that he can use his brain to become versatile and actualize his
potentials with satisfaction and well-being. According to Walton (1975), QWL
is getting importance as a way to rescue human and environmental values that
have been neglected in favor of technological advancement for productivity and
economic growth. He has taken up extensive research in this area and is
considered a major contributor to the concept of quality of work life.

He

proposed eight factors by which quality of work-life could be measured. They


are: fair and appropriate compensation, work conditions, use and development of
capacities, chance of growth and security, social integration in the organization,
constitutionalism, work and the total space of life and social relevance of work in
life. To Fernandez (1996), QWL cover the conciliation of the individuals and
organizations interests, that is to say, at the same time it improves the workers
satisfaction, and improves constantly the productivity of the company. Cole et

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al., (2005), states that the quality of life at work includes broad aspects of the
work environment which affects the collaborator in its health and in its
performance. With technology available to everyone, companies started
investing on the transformation of the labor environment, trying to make it
suitable to the physical, mental and social needs of its workers, having in mind
that this is a way to impose its differential in face of the market (Timossi et al.,
2008). According to Frana (2004), when this vision is consolidated, the
businessman no longer looks at the money he applies in better conditions of life
at work as expenditure, but as an investment, that certainly will bring him in
return a virtuous circle, where the quality of life at work represents the quality of
his products, productivity and consequently higher competitiveness.
To conclude, it can be said that while technology is no more a differential
for companies, it is the stakeholders who are interested in it promotes the
companys image and success. Hence the concern for the well being of the
employees who are instrumental in taking the company to higher levels of
efficiency and productivity is justified.
2.2 REVIEW OF VARIOUS STUDIES CONDUCTED IN THE FIELD OF
QWL AND ITS CORRELATES
After discussing the origin and development of the concept of quality of
work-life, the review of related studies conducted in this field is taken up. As
mentioned above, a parsimonious list of the various studies conducted by
different authors and research workers in India and abroad is given below. The
list of studies comprises the various works carried out directly in QWL. It also
included

the

studies

conducted

in

the

area

of

socio-psychological

components/dimensions of QWL. These components / dimensions are assumed


by the researcher to have an impact on the perception of the employees of BPOs
about their quality of work-life in their respective organization in the city of
Hyderabad.

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Studies conducted in 2012


According to Darafsh (2012), concept of quality of work-life has become
one of the renewed concerns and has an increased importance to the organization
and its human resources both in terms of employee job satisfaction and in terms
of the ultimate performance of the organization. He conducted a comparative
study using samples from Iran and India to examine the relationship between
learning organization and quality of work life. The respondents were selected
from the full-time faculty members in Panjab University and Shiraz University.
Descriptive and co-relational analyses were carried out. The results of the
comparative analysis indicate that faculty members of Panjab University in India
tend to perceive their place of work to be high on the components of learning
organization and quality of work-life as compared to their counterparts from
Shiraz University in Iran. The study also brings to light that there is significant
relationship between application of learning organization components and quality
of work-life.
Cordiality in employee-employer relations and the harmony that exists
among the employees themselves are the major force that binds them together in
the pursuit of the common goals of the organization, says George (2012). He
carried out a study with the objectives of measuring the level of quality of work
life of the employees of Toms Pipes Pvt. Ltd. in Kerala, to study the impact of
quality of work life on employee satisfaction and to find out whether employee
satisfaction is dependent on quality of work life or not. A sample of 100
employees was taken using stratified random sampling technique. Data were
collected through a well-designed questionnaire developed by the researcher.
Regression analysis was done to find out relation between the dependent and
independent variable, that is, employee satisfaction and quality of work-life. The
findings of the study revealed that employee satisfaction emanates from quality
of work-life which the employees have in this organization. It was found that
45% contribution to employee satisfaction comes from quality of work-life

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which the employees experience in the organization. The study also revealed that
the prevailing perception of employees with regard to their quality of work life is
not satisfactory, though they are of the opinion that quality of work life is a major
contributor to employee satisfaction. Significant difference existed between the
perception of married and unmarried employees with regard to the leadership and
work culture dimensions of quality of work-life. Unmarried employees had better
perception on these two dimensions than married employees.
Preoccupation with tight work schedules, offering time bound business
solutions to varied and complex problems within deadlines etc. are typical woklife which is characteristic of IT professionals. Enhancing the strength of
individuals internal resource, especially hardiness personality, is assumed to act
as a shield while encountering stressful events in occupational life. The study
conducted by Gowri and Mariammal (2012), surveyed 378 IT professionals from
the top 10 companies in Chennai. The objective of the study was to find out the
relationship between hardiness personality and stress factors of the IT
professional in Chennai. The study revealed that the IT professionals have
hardiness personality on the dimensions, commitment, control and
challenge. Further, the sources of stress, namely, work demands, career
concerns, systems maintenance, role ambiguity and job induced tension
were significantly related to hardiness personality of IT professionals.
Administrative tasks and job dissatisfaction were negatively correlated to
hardiness personality. Relationship with others and intention to quit were not
significantly related to hardiness personality.
Employee attrition is of genuine concern in BPO industry because it
disrupts the normal operations and necessitates the costly selection and training
of replacements to regain the lost customer and supplier contacts (Kumar,
2012). He conducted a study to find out the present level of attrition in BPO
industry with special reference to Sutherland Global Services and its reasons,
the problems faced by organization due to attrition and suggest ways and means

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to prevent attrition. The sample of the study comprised 100 employees selected
on the basis of simple random sampling. The reasons for which the employees
leave the organization were ranked as follows: No flexible work schedule, stress
from overwork and work-life imbalances, lack of good working conditions, the
mismatch between the job and the person, monetary factors, organizations
concern which is more towards business and less towards employees, absence
of supportive colleagues, lack of trust in senior team leaders, too little coaching
and feedback. An effective and affordable recruitment strategy which would
enable the organizations to get the right talent at the right time and at the right
place is very important for the goal attainment of the organization, believes
Vinoth (2012). He studied the effectiveness of recruitment process in a BPO
company in Bangalore to identify and understand the general practices the
organization uses to recruit and select employees, to analyze various factors
which help in assessing the effectiveness of recruitment and to know the
differences in the opinion of the respondents on the recruitment process. The
study comprised 150 employees including the managers. It was found out that
13.5% of the respondents strongly agree, 46.2% neutral, 40.4% agree to the fact
that the satisfactory level of the lower level recruitment is good. 80.8% of the
respondents agree and 19.2% strongly agree to the fact that the productivity of
the new hires inside the organization is good. 44.2% of the respondents strongly
agree, 34.6% agree, 17.3% neutral, 3.8% disagree to the fact that the internal
recruitment is considered initially. 25% of the respondents strongly agree,
34.6% agree, 34.6% neutral, 5.8% disagree to the fact that the cost of the
replacement is mostly high. 11.5% of the respondents strongly agree, 59.6%
agree, 23.1% neutral, 5.8% disagree to the fact that the employees are given a
pay which matches the market.
India has always been well positioned to be a leader in the Human
Resource Outsourcing (HRO) space, says Ishwari (2012). Her study on
effectiveness of existing separation management process in Neeyamo Enterprise

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Solution (P) Ltd., has been undertaken primarily to (a) to study and analyze the
effectiveness of separation management process and (b) to study the reason for
employee exit and (c) to optimize the current process. The study was carried out
among three different categories. They were HR personnel, project managers and
team leaders and employees who have resigned and serving the notice period.
The data was collected through questionnaire method which included Likert type,
dichotomous and open ended. The sample size was 100. The findings of the
study revealed that 73.3% of the employees resigned due to the typical problems
faced in BPO companies like lack of time to spend with family and children,
health issues, lack of growth opportunities, and stress leading to burn out.
Malhotra and Chada (2012) conducted a research on the 300 employees working
in the call centres of the Mohali, Panchkula and Chandigarh. To conduct a survey
non-probability cum convenience sampling techniques is used. The results are
analysed with the help of descriptive, Pearsoncorrelation method. The result
reveals that salary, job task, colleagues, sense of purpose, career path
opportunity, work environment, autonomy and workload are the major variables
to introduce the stress among the employees. The paper also discusses the
relevance of the stress management programmes.
The term Quality of Work-Life (QWL) was initially introduced in the late
1960s as a way of focusing on the effects of employment on worker health and
general well being, and a way to enhance the quality of a persons on-the-job
experience. However, there are generally identified issues related to QWL like
pay and stability of employment, occupational stress, alternative work schedule,
recognition, participative management, grievance procedure etc. These measures
will affect organizational performance in terms of human resource management.
Organizations are expected to maintain high QWL in order to maintain high level
organizational performance. This study by Sabarirajan, et al., (2011) is an
attempt to investigate the extent to which the QWL among the employees of
Public and Private Banks in Dindigul influences the performance of Banks.

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Employee attitudes are important to management because they determine


the behavior of workers in the organization. The commonly held opinion is that
A satisfied worker is a productive worker. A satisfied work force will create a
pleasant atmosphere within the organization to perform well. Hence job
satisfaction has become a major topic for research studies. The specific problem
addressed in this study by Pushpakumari (2008) is to examine the impact of job
satisfaction on performance. It considered which rewards (intrinsic and extrinsic)
determine job satisfaction of an employee. It also considered influence of age,
sex and experience of employees on level of job satisfaction. In addition it
investigated in most satisfying event of an employee in the job, why employees
stay and leave the organization. Data were collected through a field survey using
a questionnaire from three employee groups, namely Professionals, Managers
and Non-managers from twenty private sector organizations covering five
industries. The analysis data revealed that there existed positive correlation
between job satisfaction and performance of employees.
The study by Deshpande et al., (2012) revealed the relationship between
employee satisfaction levels and the performance of the employees on the basis
of their satisfaction levels. Employee satisfaction was measured on parameters
like financial benefits, work environment, role clarity, employee relations,
employee welfare and work stress. The sample size taken was 105 across all the
departments in a leading of the hospitality sector. A 4 point Likert Scale
questionnaire was used for collecting the data. The data analysis showed that the
satisfaction level of the employees in the organization was very high which
resulted in the smooth running of the organization
Self-concept refers to the totality of a complex, organized, and dynamic
system of learned beliefs, attitudes and opinions that each person holds to be true
about his or her personal existence. Self-concepts represent knowledge structures
that consist of beliefs about the self, including ones attributes, social roles, and
goals. The main factors determining the formation of the self-concept of an

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individual are the environment as well as people with whom the individual lives.
Notion of self-concept is developing around peoples work and organizational
experiences. The individual, relational, and collective self-concepts refer to
whether the self is viewed as separate from others, linked to others through
relationships, or included in large groups, respectively. Researchers have
established that individuals differ in their orientations toward the three levels of
the self-concept. Also, self-concept in organizations could affect on social work
behaviors, organization-based role-set in workplace, career satisfaction, and
achievement. When managers have favorable attitudes toward themselves, they
are in a much better position to build positive and realistic self concept in their
employers. However, promoting high self-concept is important. Beheshtifar and
Rahimi Nezhad (2012) finally suggested that positive self concept was
considered and reinforced among employees.
Several Research Studies in the world have measured the Quality of Work
Life (QWL) of Employees in Industries, Universities, Schools, Government and
Non Government Organizations. This research study by Reena and Jayan (2012)
highlights the quality of work-life of engineering college teachers under various
dimensions. New Challenges can be faced with employees satisfaction,
commitment and involvement in achieving personal effectiveness. This study
helps the engineering college teachers to know the role of QWL on Job attitude
and Personal Effectiveness. Quality of Work-Life (QWL) is a philosophy, a set
of principles, which holds that people are the most important resource in an
organization, that they are trustworthy, responsible and capable of making
valuable contributions and that they should be treated with dignity and respect.
The Quality of Work-Life facilitates the employees job satisfaction,
performance and personal effectiveness. A better Quality of Work-Life improves
the well-being of the employees as well as the organizations growth. The sample
consisted of 457 engineering college teachers in Kerala State, who completed
Quality of Work life Questionnaire (Jayan, Reena, Susan & Rekha, 2010) and

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Job Attitude Scale (Jayan, 2004) and Personal Effectiveness Inventory (Andros,
1999). The collected data after being coded were analyzed using Statistical
Package for Social sciences Research (SPSS) and Bivariate correlation and Oneway Anova were used.
Aryeetey and Sanda (2012) explore employees perceptions of the
availability and functionality of work life indicators in organizations in Ghana.
The purpose is to identify quality of work-life indicators that enhance
employees performances and organizational productivity, based on the premise
that the attainment of competitive advantage by an organization is linked to the
attitudinal characteristics of employees shaped by their organizational
experiences. Using a survey approach, data was collected using selfadministering questionnaires from 150 employees sampled from both public and
private organizations in the finance, education, health, and communication
industries. Finally, 128 of the returned questionnaires with all sections fully
scored were used for the analysis. The results show that employees have insights
of available and non-available, as well as functional and non-functional worklife indicators that could be incorporated in the organizational design to support
the creation of positive organizational values to enhance employee-management
relationship in Ghanaian organizations. It is concluded that organizations could
use such employee insight and knowledge to identify quality of work-life
indicators whose incorporation in the functional organization system could
support the creation of positive organizational values, not only to enhance
employees commitment, job satisfaction and productivity, but also to create
good employee-management relationship towards increased organizational
performances. The relevance of such insight to organization is that it allows for
the identification of employees thinking about the quality of their organizational
life and well-beings, which issues has been important research topics in both the
fields of human resource and organizational design.

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The purpose of the research by Paracha et al., (2012) is to determine


whether leadership styles, that is transformational leadership style and
transactional leadership style, have an impact on employee performance. Also
the researchers wished to see if job satisfaction has a mediating effect or not. For
this purpose data were collected from 6 schools working in Rawalpindi and
Islamabad. Result shows that transactional and transformational both are
significantly positive associated with employee performance, however,
transactional leadership was more significant than transformational. Another
important discovery made was there was no mediating role of job satisfaction
between transactional leadership. But it mediates with transformation leadership
and employee performance.
The goal of this research by Ghasemizad et al., (2012) was to investigate
relationship between spiritual leadership, quality of work-life, job satisfaction
and productivity in Kerman high schools principals and teachers. The population
of this research contained over 420 principals and teachers of Kerman high
schools in Iran. The considered sample size 220 was obtained by using krejcie
and Morgans (1970) table and 270 individuals were selected by using simple
random sampling. Four questionnaires of spiritual leadership, quality of worklife, job satisfaction and productivity were used for gathering information.
Cronbachs alpha was used for reliability; item analyses and experts' consensus
for validity. Findings show that there is a significant relationship between
spiritual leadership and job satisfaction (R=.40). There is a significant
relationship between spiritual leadership and productivity (R=.32); significant
relationship between spiritual leadership and quality of work-life (R=.41);
significant relationship between job satisfaction and productivity (R=.34). A
significant relationship is observed between job satisfaction and quality of worklife with (R=.54). A significant relationship is observed between quality of worklife and productivity (R=.68) all of these relationships were significant on the
level of P<0.01. Multiple regression showed that among the variables of spiritual

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leadership, quality of work life and job satisfaction, quality of work-life with
=0.60 has more portion in productivity.
The aim of the study by Taneja and Kumari (2012) is to find out the bank
employees perception towards their quality of work-life and demographic
variables. Survey was conducted and data were analyzed on the basis of
responses provided by 250 respondents. A well-structured questionnaire was
formulated, which was subjected to pilot testing and re-drafted. Data were
analyzed using factor analysis, descriptive statistics, t-test and (one way)
ANOVA. The Karl Pearson correlation was used to understand the relationship
between QWL and job satisfaction. The analysis showed that there is a
significant gap among the bank employees with demographic variables with
respect to various factors of QWL. The test indicated that there is positive and
direct relationship between QWL and job satisfaction. The results of this study
may have some practical significance for Human Resource Managers, of
especially of banks, in designing their retention policies.
Rajagopalan and Noyaline (2012) in their study aimed at exploring
various strategies adopted by the BPO personnel to overcome the stress, based on
their perception. Stress management warrants much attention nowadays,
particularly in the corporate sector, more so in the IT sector. While a minimum
level of stress is harmless, even necessary to bring out the best in human beings
at work, too much of stress will wear the employees out, upset his work life
balance and simply damage him totally. The study was based on primary data
collected by using pre-structured questionnaire. To evaluate the stress managing
strategies, t- test and F-test were used. First, reliability of the items in the scale
measuring the stress management was evaluated using Reliability/Item analysis
with Cronbachs Alpha Coefficient. Next, Principal Component Method of
Factor Analysis, with Varimax Rotation, was used to identify the major
characteristics underlying the stress management.

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Srivastava and Misra (2012) in their study proposed to explore the role of
career salience as a moderator for the relationship between job burnout and
organizational commitment. Two hundred and fifty middle level managers,
belonging to private sector organizations, were studied for the present work. The
variables were assessed through three validated instruments. The data were
analyzed through Descriptive Statistics, Pearson Product Moment Correlation,
Factor Analysis and Hierarchical Regression Analysis. It was inferred from the
results that job burnout was negatively related to organizational commitment and
career salience moderated the relationship between job burnout and
organizational commitment. By understanding the relationship between these
variables, organizations should try to provide a congenial environment and
conduct training programmes to actively manage their human capital which is
one of the strongest pillars for any organization.
A high quality of work-life is essential for organizations to continue to
attract and retain employees. QWL is a process in which organizations recognize
their responsibility to develop job and working conditions that are excellent for
the employee and organization. An effective leader influences the followers in a
desired manner to achieve goals. It is evident from the literature that different
leadership styles may affect organization effectiveness and performance. The
interventions of QWL will effectively utilize the employee potentials by ensuring
great

participation

and

involvement

of

workers.

This

paper

by

Nanjundeswaraswamy and Swamy (2012) focuses and analyses the literature


findings which involves QWL and Leadership styles.
Krishna and Prasad (2012) conducted a study which reviews various
changes taking place in the organizational structure, work environment, work
culture and quality of work-life in Indian Information Technology (IT) and IT
Enabled Services industry. It highlights the need and importance of training and
development, availability of various training and development methods. Also, it

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focuses on transformational leadership theory as a method for identifying,


analyzing, training and development of leadership in the organization.
The purpose of the study conducted by Singh and Srivastav (2012) is to
understand and develop the concept of QWL in organization and to identify
factors especially in the internal environment of an organization that leads to
QWL. A qualitative approach was used to develop a conceptual model, depicting
the difference in the total perceived level of QWL amongst employees and
employers in organizations. SERVQUAL model was adapted in assess the QWL
Level, in terms of its adequacy and superiority.
Studies conducted in 2011
Outsourcing is the strategic use of outside resources to perform activities
that a firm can usually handle through internal staff and own resources, says
Jyothi and Arora (2011). Their study sought to examine the impact of
outsourcing on employee attitudes. The data was collected from 100 employees
working in different manufacturing firms operating in the industrial estate of
Jammu region. One outsourcing construct and five employee attitude constructs
were used to ascertain the impact of outsourcing on employee attitudes. The data
was analyzed with the help of uni-variate and bi-variate techniques. Reliability
and validity of the scales were also checked. The study revealed that most of the
non-core, non-critical activities and non-core, critical activities were outsourced
and companies did not outsource core critical activities. Furthermore,
outsourcing had a positive effect on morale and job security and a negative effect
on job satisfaction and intention to leave.

Chavan and Potdar (2011) analysed the impact of the outsourcing industry
on the society and the individuals in India. Both positive and negative impacts
have been analyzed. They focused on the following few major aspects during this
study: health issues, societal issues, personal issues, benefits offered, strategies

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for work and work ethics. Based on a field survey, views of few employees and
employers of this industry have been captured and analyzed. Various health
issues that came to light are stress, sleeplessness, and headache, fatigue, sense of
exhaustion and lack of concentration. It was also found that a number of factors
like hindrance in personal life, physically tiring nature of work, for better salary,
lack of growth opportunity, non-conducive policies and procedures could be
some of the reasons for employees to leave the industry/company. Majority of
employees complained of headache and digestive disorders. Almost everyone
stressed on having provision for power naps of 10-15 minutes. Employees
accepted that they enjoy various facilities and benefits provided by the company
like Provident Fund, Gratuity, Personal Accidental Insurance; Company leased
accommodation, Recreational (like Cafeteria) and other facilities (like ATM,
Gym etc), Corporate credit card, Educational Benefits, Performance based
incentives, Regular get-together and other cultural programs, Employee Referral
Schemes and Maternity leave. Employees also accepted that their spending has
increased and much of the money is spent in lifestyle products, recreational
activities and to support the family. Employees dismissed the aspect of increased
professionalism being unique to the BPO industry and said professionalism is
pervasive in all sectors.
In the present day scenario, IT and BPO companies jobs are termed as
more competitive and stressful, says Lakshminarayana (2011). His study brought
out the general broad outline of causes of occupational stress at individual
employee level and at the corporate level. Also the study suggested some urgent
strategic planning needed to combat the alarming rise of disorder in the health of
the employee and the organization as a whole, in the present Indian context and
scenario. Given the Indian scenario of competitive market, over population and
scarcity of good jobs, run on the theory of Survival of the Fittest, no profession
is stress free. The degree and depth may vary from one another. Both employer
and employee must understand that work should be valued and not excessive.
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Work should not compromise on health and family life; rather offer happiness,
peace of mind, certainty, variety and flexibility. As a general rule, actions to
reduce job stress should be given top priority in the process of organizational
change to improve working conditions and to avert the situation of brain drain.
But even the most conscientious efforts to improve working conditions are
unlikely to eliminate stress completely for all workers.

The study conducted by Shahzad et al., (2011) examined the relationship


of the work life policies and job stress to the turnover intentions of customer
service representatives (CSRs) in Pakistan. Data was collected from 118
customer service representatives (CSRs) working in call centres to test the
relationship among variables. Results of the study showed negative relationship
of turnover intention with work life policies and positive relationship with job
stress. Results indicate that organizations need to develop and implement such
strategies which can reduce stress and create balance in work family life so as to
have better quality of work-life for this category of employees.

Khattak et al., (2011) in their study examined the occupational stress and
professional burnout in the banking sector of Pakistan. A total of 237 bank
employees (74.3% male and 25.7% female) from different commercial banks
participated in the survey. In order to collect data on stress and burnout, a selfreported questionnaire was administered to bank employees. Descriptive,
correlation and regression statistical tools were used to analyze data. The results
identified that workload, working hours, technological problem at work,
inadequate salary, time for family and job worries at home are the significant
sources of stress in the banking sector. The significant symptoms of burnout as
revealed by the results are back pain, extreme tiredness, headache and sleep
disturbance. All stressors (organization, job, relationship at work, work
environment and family work interface) were significantly correlated to all
burnouts (physical, psychological and organizational). All the stress elements
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significantly predicted burnout in the banking sector of Pakistan. The changing


work pattern is creating stress for the bank employees and these stressors are
leading to burnout. These results are consistent with the emergent evidence of the
impact of stress on the burnout.

Many organizations in the hotel industry face difficulties in retaining


employees since they are unable to identify the factors that contribute to both
employee satisfaction and loyalty. The study conducted by Abdullah (2011)
covered thirteen satisfaction variables. This study sought to identify factors
which could lead to increased tenure, in addition, any linkage between employee
satisfaction and teamwork was further investigated. In order to do that, a business
model, called the Service Profit Chain was used and applied in hotels in the
Klang Valley area in Malaysia. A portion of the model that measures employee
satisfaction and loyalty was adopted for this study. The findings indicated the
existence of correlation between employee satisfaction and teamwork. Four of
the thirteen satisfaction variables, namely, relationship with supervisor,
recognition and rewards, working conditions, teamwork and cooperation showed
the strongest correlation with the three loyalty variables afore mentioned.

Despite an increasing number of studies on salary satisfaction, no unifying


work was focused on the measurement of degree of difference in salary
satisfaction in a public sector organization and a private sector organization in
Indian context. Salary dissatisfaction decreases job satisfaction, motivation,
performance, and increases absenteeism, turnover intensions, which are
indicators of quality of work life. Sharma and Bajpai (2011) hypothesized that
there is significant difference in the degree of salary satisfaction in public sector
and private sector organization. Data were collected from 250 employees
consisting of managerial and non-managerial staff from both public sector and
private sector organizations. The results showed that employees in public sector
organization have greater degree of salary satisfaction in comparison to private
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sector employees. In addition to this, job satisfaction increases or decreases with


increase or decrease in salary satisfaction. The purpose of this study was to
invoke salary satisfaction in private sector organization. Obtained results were in
the line of the hypotheses. In terms of salary satisfaction, a significant difference
was noticed between public sector and private sector organization. As expected,
public sector employees exhibited higher degree of salary satisfaction as
compared to private sector employees. Most importantly, salary satisfaction is
being proven as the catalyst for enhancing job satisfaction level of employees.

The Information Technology (IT) sector has been instrumental in driving


the Indian economy onto the rapid growth curve, observe George and Alex
(2011). They carried out a study among the IT professionals in Kerala to
understand the importance of Internal Career Anchors (ICA) and External Career
Opportunities (ECO) while determining employee Intention to Quit (ITQ) from
an organization. The respondents were IT professional working the state of
Kerala. The analysis revealed negative relationship between the degree of ECO
and ITQ (-0.49) and positive relationship between ICA and ITQ (0.16). Only two
ICAs namely, job security and technical-functional competence were negative
and significant. No demographic variable except years of experience in the
organization, showed significant effect on ITQ. The results indicate that the IT
companies in Kerala should try and give special emphasis to ICA dimensions of
the individuals and offer ECO in line with employee characteristics to curb
employee turnover.

Employees face numerous problems in their personal as well as work life,


which tend to lower their morale. The work-life stress hampers employees
capabilities and lowers their productivity. Being service-oriented human
organization banks need a workforce which is capable, efficient and happy for
their smooth working. In the study conducted by Kumari (2011), entry level and
middle level officers of public sector and private sector banks in Uttarakhand
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were surveyed to measure the level of their organizational stress. The impact of
stress on their morale was also assessed. Through statistical analysis of stress and
morale scores obtained from the respondents, the study sought to ascertain the
difference in the level of stress of entry level and middle level officers of public
and private sector banks and to examine the impact of the stress on their morale.
The study revealed that significant differences existing among the bank officers
of different levels.

Choudhury and Gupta (2011) contributed insight into the relationship


between pay satisfaction and turnover intention as well as between job
satisfaction and turnover intention among young Indian professionals by
segregating the respondents into two groups based on the median age. Data were
collected from 230 working Indian executives, having median age of 25, from
various industries such as information technology, public sector units, pharmacy,
and fast moving consumer goods where they expressed their views on turnover
intentions, job satisfaction, and pay satisfaction in their respective organizations.
The results revealed the negative relationship between turnover intention and job
satisfaction and also between turnover intention and pay satisfaction. However,
when age was introduced as a variable having a moderating effect on the above
relationships, it was noticed that pay satisfaction is more significant than job
satisfaction, when it comes to intention to quit a job for employees less than the
median age, turnover intention is driven more by job satisfaction than pay
satisfaction. Findings from this study offer important implications for theory and
research in turnover intention driven by factors like pay satisfaction and job
satisfaction with the moderating effect of age of employees

The growth in the IT sector in India has contributed to its image as a


global hub of excellence. Today, India is undisputedly a software and services
powerhouse, propelled by the rich talent pool available in the country
(Ramkumar and Soumya, 2011). Their study was an attempt to assess the levels
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of engagement in an IT firm which claims to be one among the organizations that


has initiated engagement programs in a scientific and comprehensive way. Using
simple random sampling technique, a sample of 100 software engineers were
selected from a company in Kerala. The study revealed that only 56% of the
employees belonged to engaged category in this organization. It is interesting to
note that only male employees belonged to the disengaged category. The study
also revealed the employees belonging to the age group of 20-25 are the more
engaged compared to those in the higher age groups.

The study conducted by Shanawaz and Jaffry (2011) was designed to


investigate the influence of organizational culture and human resource practices
on the development of psychological contract as such and two dimensions of it,
transactional and relational. Data was collected from 95 full-time working
employees based on convenience and snowball sampling from information
technology/information technology enabled services (IT/ITES) companies
situated in two metros in India. The results indicated that only HR practices,
taken collectively, influence the psychological contract of IT/ITES professionals.
The results further indicated that only maintenance and retention dimensions of
HR practices impacts relational contract and no dimension of culture has any
influence on it. However, three dimensions each of culture and HR practices
influence transactional contract. This suggests that HR managers need to ensure
that the HR policies, practices and culture are all well in place to reap the
positive benefits of a balanced psychological contract.

The study conducted by Suri and Prasad (2011) added to the increasing
body of knowledge in the sphere of transformational leadership. Their study
empirically

established

the

relationship

between

self-awareness

and

transformational leadership in IT industry in Hyderabad. A sample of 130


managers was drawn from software product development organizations. The
analysis revealed that increase in self-awareness help increase transformational
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leadership. The increase in self-awareness increases the capability to monitor


leaders behaviour and leaders can then adapt to and effectively lead with a wider
range of business challenges. The study also supported Metcalfe and Metcalfe
model of transformational leadership (due to strong correlations within
components of the transformational leadership). Self-awareness also has a
positive correlation between transformational leadership components.

Work-life balance can be defined as the perfect integration between work


and life, both not interfering with each other (Priscilla, 2011). In her article
work-life balance, the HR perspective, she emphasized the need for
maintaining wok-life balance of employees for the good of the employees as well
as the organizations. With the advent of globalization, the demands of workplace
are ever-increasing and have become highly dynamic. BPO companies are not an
exception to this. Employees spend more time at the work place rather than at
home which negatively contribute to their quality of work-life. Although
businesses are witnessing new heights, the work-life balance of employees is no
longer in control. Growing number of suicides, divorces, disturbed families and
relationships, outrage or conflicts in the organizations etc. are some reflections of
disturbed work-life balance of the employees. The author concludes her article
saying that it his high time employers must draw out strategies or plans to cope
with the problem and help the employees to enjoy their work and live life to the
fullest.
The article written by Mishra and Mohanty (2011) on career planning
and development in IT companies, offers a contemporary perspective on the
themes of career planning, career development and career pathing by
highlighting the practices of an IT company. According to them, an
organizations productivity is not only measured in terms of profit, growth, new
products and customer satisfaction, but also in terms of employee satisfaction
through effective career planning and development initiative. HR managers face
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numerous challenges on a continuous basis when it comes to improving career


planning and development initiatives for an organizations survival. The idea that
individuals go through distinct but interrelated career stages is widely recognized
and accepted. The authors have developed a simple version of the concept which
includes five stages, namely, pre-work stage, establishment stage, advancement
stage, maintenance stage and retirement stage.

Attitudes do not, usually, exist in isolation. It is likely, for example, that


ones attitude toward where one works is linked with ones attitudes toward the
work itself, co-workers, the location of the workplace and so forth, says Raina
and Shahnawaz 2011). Their study explored how satisfied managers are with
their organization and also how they perceive HR practices such as scope for
advancement, objectivity, and rationality, wages and benefits, job characteristics
and leadership. The sample consisted of 51 executives from the BPO industry
having offices in Delhi and National Capital Region (NCR). Data were collected
using an attitudinal survey scale and the results were analyzed with the help of
SPSS package using mean score, standard deviation, correlation and regression.
It was found that scope for advancement, wages and benefits are the most
important factors as predictors of company satisfaction. It has also been proved
that job attributes like redesign of work, job enrichment, job enlargement,
autonomy, restructuring work around teams and feedback enhance satisfaction at
the workplace, which in turn results in higher performance.

The study done by Pradeep and Prabhu (2011) is a comparison between


selected public and private sector enterprises and the data comprises of 43 middle
level managers and 156 subordinates. The paper looks first at various factors that
add to the effectiveness of leadership through Garrett scores. It then discusses
whether there is any differences in the leadership choice between the public and
private sector enterprises. Finally, the relationship between transformational,
transactional, laissez-faire leaderships and employee performance is explored
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through correlation and regression analysis. The results are likely to suggest that
leaders must have the ability to attract/influence their subordinates, be able to set
clear standards of performance to their peers and act as a best role model to the
subordinates. The subordinates expect that their achievements must be
recognized and rewarded either with monetary or with nonmonetary terms. The
Garretts score that gives the preferences of the Middle level managers and the
subordinates from among various leadership styles recommended the
transformational leadership style in both the public and in the private sector
enterprises. The results of correlation and regression analysis suggest that the
transformational leadership style has significant relationships with performance
outcomes; the study thus adds some additional knowledge for a better
understanding of the preferred leadership approach and appropriate style for use
with subordinates in various professional levels.
Teamwork is the ability to work together toward a common vision. And a
leader is a person who guides and has the ability to direct individual
accomplishments toward organizational objectives. It is the fuel that allows
common people to attain uncommon results. With this in mind the role of a
leader is indispensable in the team. This article by Nirmala and Sharon (2011)
deals with the conduct of leaders and team members in the aspect of People and
Task Management Skills.
Human resource plays an important role in the success of any
organization, because most of the problems in organizations are human and
social rather than physical or technical. A good quality of work-life not only
attracts new talent but also retain the existing talent. Quality of work-life has
been defined as "the quality of relationship between employees and the total
working environment". This study by Jeyarathnam and Malarvizhi (2011)
attempts to evaluate the quality of work-life of sugar mill employees and analyze
the relationship between the productivity and quality of work-life. Data were
collected through questionnaire from a sample of 190 employees from sugar

100

mills in Erode district in Tamilnadu. The results of the study showed the intensity
of working conditions and the behavioral aspects of the employees in the study
area. It concludes that the basic strategy for improving the quality of work life is
to identify employees important needs and to satisfy those needs. The study also
indicated that dissatisfaction might happen due to lack of recognition, tedious
work, unhealthy peer relations, poor working conditions, low self-esteem,
occupational stress, heavy work load, monotony, fatigue, time pressures, job
insecurity, instability of job.
Studies conducted in 2010
The study conducted by Kheradmand, Mohammadreza and Lotfi (2010),
contributes to the literature on QWL by testing the relationship between QWL
and job performance. A questionnaire was used to survey a sample of 35
employees in Dadevarz Jooya Company in Iran. The results indicated a
significant positive relationship between QWL and job performance. A two
factor model with correlated factors was postulated and supported. Analysis
showed that the two constructs are highly correlated.
Singh (2010), in her study on the perception of work-life balance policies
among software professionals, tried to find out their perceptions on work-life
balance policies. The sample size for this study was 133 respondents from two
organizations. The study provided the management an approach to assess the
awareness of WLB policies and to measure their perceived importance which
was a major contribution by the researcher.
Garg (2010) conducted a study to find out the relationship between
distress and quality of life. The study was conducted among the private sector
bank employees in Chandigarh city. The researcher found that there is significant
negative relationship between distress and quality of life. But after introducing
stress management techniques, the quality of life increased and distress level
significantly decreased as per the researchers findings.

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Ravindran and Vijayalakshmi (2010) conducted a study in Nokia Siemens


Networks, Bangalore, to identify the factors influencing stress among employees.
The study used descriptive research design as it reveals the existing facts. The
sample size was 100 out of 250 employees. The type of sampling used was
convenience sampling and a structured questionnaire was used to collect the
primary data and the secondary data were collected through company records,
journals etc. The study revealed that lengthy working hours, ambitious targets set
by the employer and working at night are the major factors influencing stress
among the employees in the company.
The dynamic work environment and high pressures have created lot of
stress among women. Shikari (2010) in her article Juggling work and life
shares the experiences of different women executives in dealing with work stress
and handling family life simultaneously in order to create and maintain work life
balance.
Ay and Avsaroglu (2010), in their research on accountants professional
burnout, job and life satisfaction examined whether the burnout and job
satisfaction of accountants differed according to some variables. The Maslach
burnout inventory and Job satisfaction scale were used to collect data. The
research population consisted of the accountants in Turkey. Sample of the
research consisted of 1,494 randomly chosen participants from this group. Data
collection was initiated by sending the data collection tools to the accountants via
mail and e-mail in September, 2008 and required data was obtained in June,
2009. According to the results of the study, it was determined those in terms of
gender, male accountants experienced more emotional burn out and female
accountants experienced more job satisfaction. The significant differences in
terms of gender, age group, workplace, working area, working style, workplace
type, level of income variables, burnout and job satisfaction were determined in
this research. Concurrently, it was discovered that there was negative correlation
between burnout and job satisfaction.

102

Much attention has been given to the explosion in business process


outsourcing (BPO) operations in India. Little concern, however, has been paid to
the performance of Indian service workers in these fast-paced and sometimes
turbulent environments. Using a sample of 160 service workers from a privately
held BPO firm in India, Combs, Clapp-Smith and Nadkarni (2010) examined the
relationship between Indian service workers hope and their performance
outcomes. Regression and structural equation model analyses indicated a
significant positive relationship between Indian service workers levels of hope
and their performance. These promising results highlight the importance of
measuring and managing employee hope to maximize employee productivity and
performance. By effectively developing and managing levels of employee hope,
Indian BPO firms can combat employee problems such as attrition, stress, and
burnout that have plagued the BPO industry. Hope may also help mitigate the
influence of aspects of Indian culture on human resource management practices
in Indian BPOs.
In this globalized world, parents are searching for equitable life between
their family and work roles, says Abrar and Ghouri (2010). Their study explored
the insight aspects and difficulties of dual earners family and work-life. Two
thousand two hundred (2,200) questionnaires were distributed in organizations of
Karachi, Pakistan. The key findings of this study exposed the individuals family
and work role identity and explained that value principles are the cause of role
tenancy choices and decisions made by dual-earner parents. Gender based
parental role identities evenly account a work role identity or salient parental role
identity. Dual earners experience the concerns and rewards of work and family
role accumulation. Family role participation rewards and conflicts arose for
mothers and fathers with their family related life. Balancing work and family,
their related issues and concerns are important for dual earners, regardless of
their occupational field. Dual-earner parents also experience the inter-role

103

conflict and overload, which hurt their work or family domain. It makes intricacy
to fulfill ones role in response to fulfilling other role successfully.
Oladele and Mabe (2010) carried out a study to understand the job burnout
and coping strategies among extension officers in North West province, South
Africa.

Simple random sampling technique was used to select 40 extension

officers to examine the incidence of job burnout and coping strategies. Data were
collected with a structured questionnaire and analyzed using frequency counts,
percentages and multiple regression analysis. The results showed that majority of
the extension officers were male (52.5%) with the mean age of 42.5 years,
married (72.5%) and 82.5% were Christians. Eighty-five percent of the extension
officers had diploma as their educational qualification and a mean of 14 years as
working experience. The result revealed that extension officers experienced 29
out of the listed 44 job burnout symptoms, which include cynicism/negativism
(1.87) agitation (1.85) accident proneness (1.75) and loss of patience (1.72). The
most prominent coping strategy as indicated by extension officers were
maintaining an active personal social life outside of work (2.50), maintaining
healthy relationship with co-workers (2.47), development of structural and
personal support system (2.45) and maintaining healthy relationship with
superior officers (2.47). Significant determinants of job burnout were gender (t =
2.46), educational level (t = -3.02), studying for higher degree (t = -2.30) and
number of farmers covered (t = -2.20). The study recommended that extension
officers should be exposed to training and techniques to cope with job burnout.
Katsuro et al., (2010) in their study sought to assess the impact of
occupational health and safety (OHS) on productivity in the commercial food
industry. The objective of the study was to explore occupational health and safety
(OHS) problems of different work areas and their impact on productivity. The
research targeted production supervisors, shop floor employees and industrial
clinic nurses. Questionnaires, interviews and observations were used as research
instruments to collect data. The study found out that OHS related problems

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negatively affect workers productive capacity in the food industry resulting in


reduced worker output. Workers developed a negative attitude and low morale
towards work. High incidents of accidents at work also occurred. The study
recommended that food industry factories should upgrade their OHS through
training programs and use up-to-date equipment.
The study carried out by Rehman et al., (2010) explored the relationship
between work rewards and job satisfaction with moderating effect of age
differences. It was an empirical study and a sample of eighty four full time
employees of FESCO (Faisalabad Electric Supply Company, Pakistan) was
taken. The results of this study revealed that job rewards are proved to be strong
determinant of job satisfaction. Job satisfaction was more related to extrinsic
rewards for employees than intrinsic rewards. The age differences were found to
have moderating effect on job satisfaction as it increases with rise in age.
The study of Okereke and Daniel (2010) examined staff welfare and
organizations productivity, using Patani Local Government Council in Delta
State, Nigeria as a reference. The methodology was primarily qualitative and
involved use of In-Depth Interviews (IDIs) and Focus Group Discussion (FGDs)
to secure information from employees at the Council. Motivational models and
conflict theory of Dahrendorf were used as the theoretical framework. The theory
presupposes social changes as an inevitable outcome of activities of societal
elements, typified in the contrasting positions of the management and employees
that could retard motivation and employee performance. Data revealed general
awareness about staff welfare among the employees and ability to identify the
elements of welfare. There was absence of staff welfare in the council. The
working environment was poor, in terms of office accommodation and furniture,
paucity of working materials, scarcely available monetary incentives and
unreliable health and safety facilities, which altogether reduced morale (job
satisfaction) and efficiency in job performance. The authors recommended
pragmatic efforts to enhance employees job capabilities through training; to

105

improve working conditions of the employees and their general welfare in order
to elicit job satisfaction and motivation for increased productivity.
The drivers of outsourcing emanate from organizational initiatives,
improvement focus, financial and cost objectives or growth objectives. Despite
the increasing practical significance of this phenomenon, the academic literature
is limited to a handful of studies concerned with the delegation of accounting
functions. There are different drives and phases in the process of outsourcing but
little is known on what drives accounting outsourcing and its process. Based on
an in-depth case study, Hamzah et al., (2010) tried to understand the drivers and
processes in accounting outsourcing. This study examined the mechanisms and
practices adopted in accounting outsourcing in a Malaysian company. Interviews
were conducted with vendor and client of the company studied. The findings
revealed that there is no firm basis used by the company studied for evaluating its
outsourcing decision.
Afzal et al., (2010) explored the experiences of mid-career professional
working mothers exercising integration among work, family and selves in the
context of the city of Faisalabad, Pakistan. It has been examined that the family
systems, joint and nuclear, affected them and their careers. The sample included
22 professional working mid-career mothers, ranging from 33 to 48 years of age,
having at least one independent child, living either in nuclear or joint family
system. The researchers used the interview technique for collecting the data.
Qualitative in-depth interviews were audio-taped. An interview inventory was
prepared beforehand and its validity was checked in consultation with the
research supervisor and other experts in the university. The study showed that the
professional working mothers were responsible in performing their domestic and
professional roles, besides self-care. The proper incorporation of both roles was
plausible with the stipulation of flexibility from both, work and family system,
joint or nuclear. All women had intense feelings of motherhood; their career was
also of high importance for them as they found it purposeful and satisfying. They

106

felt they were now better able to balance their family, work and individual self as
compared to the start of their careers.
The aim of the study conducted by Arandelovi et al., (2010) was (1) to
test the possibilities of standardized questionnaires for burnout, quality of life,
and work ability in Serbia by investigating interactions of these phenomena in
food manufacturing workers in Serbia; and (2) to determine possible preventive
measures. The study enrolled 489 food manufacturing workers in the region of
Nis (Serbia) during the period from January 2008 to February 2009. Authors
included three standardized questionnaires: for burnout (CBI), quality of life
(ComQoL-A5), and the work ability index (WAI) in the Serbian language. The
results of the study indicated high scores in personal (60.0) and work burnout
(67.9), lower scores for objective (66.2%SM) and subjective quality of life in
enrolled subjects (69.2%SM), and an excellent work ability index in most
workers (65.8%). The questionnaires tested are reliable instruments in the
Serbian region. Burnout, quality of life, and work ability are significantly
interrelated categories in food manufacturing workers. There was a high degree
of work burnout that has not yet been accompanied with significant impairment
of quality of living and work ability in exposed workers. That is why a
salutogenic approach in the prevention of this phenomenon, by health-promotion
programs in the workplace, would be the method of choice for burnout
improvement.
In recent years, workaholism has become prevalent throughout
organizations and has captured the attention of organizational leaders as well as
the academic and scientific community, believes Adkins et al., (2010). Most
research in this area has focused on the negative consequences of work-holism,
specifically work-life imbalance. One area of research that has largely been
ignored is the potential influence of demographic variables on the relationship
between workaholism and work-life imbalance. Therefore, the current study
focused on how cultural origin might influence the intensity of this relationship.

107

Based on relative deprivation theory and previous empirical work, it was


expected that cultural origin would moderate the relationship between
workaholism and work-life imbalance. Specifically, it was predicted that
Caucasian participants would score higher on levels of workaholism than black
participants, and that the relationship between work-holism and work-life
imbalance would be stronger for Caucasians than for blacks. The results revealed
that high levels of workaholism were significantly correlated with high levels of
work-life imbalance. However, results also indicated that cultural origin did not
moderate the relationship between workaholism and work-life imbalance, and
there was no significant mean difference between Caucasian and Black
participants on measure of work-holism. These findings are important in that it is
essential for employers to be aware of workaholic tendencies so they can better
handle the negative consequences that result for the organization, and also help
them promote the well-being of their employees.
Budhwar, Luthar and Bhatnagar (2010) highlighted the context within
which business process outsourcing (BPO) has rapidly grown in India and the
critical need to investigate the dynamics of human resource management (HRM)
practices and systems in this sector. Using a mixed method approach involving
both in depth interviews and self-completing questionnaires, they analyzed the
nature of HRM systems in BPO organizations operating in India. The analysis
was based on a sample of fifty one (51) BPO companies, a majority of which are
located near the capital of New Delhi. The results focused on the nature and
structure of work and organization of Indian BPOs, as well as the strategic role
played by HRM in such organizations. Furthermore, the findings highlighted the
way specific HRM practices such as recruitment, performance appraisal, training
and development, and compensations are implemented. The study suggested the
existence of formal, structured, and rationalized HRM systems in Indian BPOs.
A number of insights related to HRM policies and practices were shared by the
HR managers interviewed, shedding more light on the inner workings of the

108

Indian BPO companies and their challenges. The analysis provides original and
useful information to both academicians and practitioners and opens avenues for
future research on the nature of HRM systems and practices in the Indian BPO
industry.
The purpose of the

exploratory research conducted by Burke et al.,

(2010) was to examine the relationship of a measure of work intensity with


potential antecedents and consequences. A questionnaire was developed and pretested. It included a new 15-item measure of work intensity. Data were collected
from 106 respondents enrolled in three university business courses using
anonymously completed questionnaires. Regression and factor analyses were
used in developing the measure and testing the relationships.

The 15-item

measure of work intensity was found to have high internal consistency and
reliability. Work intensity was significantly related to respondents' organizational
level and work status. In addition, respondents indicating higher levels of work
intensity also reported working more hours, a higher workload, and greater job
stress. Work intensity was unrelated to organizational values supporting workpersonal life imbalance, three workaholism components, or to indicators of work
engagement. Factor analysis of the work intensity measured produced three
factors: emotional demands, job demands, and time demands; the first two were
fairly consistently related to other study variables, whereas time demands were
not. The study developed a work intensity measure and examined its properties
and correlates, something that is lacking in the literature.
Much attention has been given to the explosion in business process
outsourcing (BPO) operations in India. Little concern, however, has been paid to
the performance of Indian service workers in these fast-paced and sometimes
turbulent environments. Using a sample of 160 service workers from a privately
held BPO firm in India, Combs et al., (2010) examined the relationship between
Indian service workers' hope and their performance outcomes. Regression and
structural equation model analyses indicated a significant positive relationship

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between Indian service workers' levels of hope and their performance. These
promising results highlight the importance of measuring and managing employee
hope to maximize employee productivity and performance. By effectively
developing and managing levels of employee hope, Indian BPO firms can
effectively combat employee problems such as attrition, stress, and burnout that
have plagued the BPO industry.
Cross-national comparisons generally show large differences in life
satisfaction of individuals within and between European countries. The work
done by Drobnic et al., (2010) addresses the question of whether and how job
quality and working conditions contribute to the quality of life of employed
populations in nine strategically selected EU countries: Finland, Sweden, the UK,
the Netherlands, Germany, Portugal, Spain, Hungary, and Bulgaria. Using data
from the European Quality of Life Survey 2003, they examined relationships
between working conditions and satisfaction with life, as well as whether
spillover or segmentation mechanisms better explain the link between work
domain and overall life satisfaction. Results showed that the level of life
satisfaction varies significantly across countries, with higher quality of life in
more affluent societies. However, the impact of working conditions on life
satisfaction is stronger in Southern and Eastern European countries. The study
suggested that the issue of security, such as security of employment and pay
which provides economic security, is the key element that in a straightforward
manner affects peoples quality of life. Other working conditions, such as
autonomy at work, good career prospects and an interesting job seem to translate
into high job satisfaction, which in turn increases life satisfaction indirectly. In
general, bad-quality jobs tend to be more effective in worsening workers
perception of their life conditions than good jobs are in improving their quality of
life. The authors discussed the differences in job-related determinants of life
satisfaction between the countries and considered theoretical and practical
implications of these findings.

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Javornik and Jana (2010) analyzed the determinants of global life


satisfaction in two countries (the Netherlands and the U.S.), by using both selfreports and responses to a battery of vignette questions. They found global life
satisfaction of happiness is well-described by four domains: job or daily
activities, social contacts and family, health, and income. Among the four
domains, social contacts and family had the highest impact on global life
satisfaction, followed by job and daily activities and health. Income had the
lowest impact. It was also found that American response styles differed from the
Dutch in that Americans were more likely to use the extremes of the scale (either
very satisfied or very dissatisfied) than the Dutch, who were more inclined to
stay in the middle of the scale. Although for both Americans and the Dutch,
income was the least important determinant of global life satisfaction, it was
more important in the U.S. than in the Netherlands. Indeed life satisfaction varied
substantially more with income in the U.S. than in the Netherlands.
The main purpose of the study initiated by Sidin et al., (2010) was to link
work-family conflict, quality of work and non-work lives, quality of life and
social support (supervisor and spouse supports). Specifically, it sought to address
three different roles of social support that have theoretical and empirical support
and the mediating roles of quality of work life and quality of non-work. The
SEM-based approach has been used to study supervisor and spouse supports as
moderators between work-family conflict and quality of life; independent
variables of work-family conflict; independent variables of quality of life. The
main findings were: work-family conflict had relationship with quality of life;
quality of work life and non-work life are ``partial'' mediators between workfamily conflict and quality of life; and, among the various roles of social support,
its role as an independent variable of quality of life gives the best results. The
research was based on a cross-sectional study conducted in Malaysia and
addressed only the spouse and supervisor supports as components of social
support. The research has developed a comprehensive model linking work-family

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conflict, quality of work and non-work lives, and quality of life and has studied
the role of social support.
India is known as the Business Process Outsourcing (BPO) capital of the
world, hence safeguarding health of millions of youngsters employed in this new
growing economy is an occupational health challenge, says Mishra et al., (2010).
The study conducted by them was with the objectives of assessing the prevalence
of tobacco use and for an understanding of the factors responsible for initiating
and continuing its use. The main aim, however, was to assess the effect of
different tobacco cessation intervention strategies, thus identifying effective
methods to assist these employees to quit tobacco. The study was

a 4-arm

cluster randomized trial of 18 months duration among 646 BPO employees,


working in four different BPO units. The employees were invited to participate in
interviews following which tobacco users of each BPO were offered specific
tobacco cessation interventions to assist them to quit tobacco use. The study
revealed that the prevalence of tobacco dependence is 41%, mainly cigarette
smoking. The tobacco quit rate is similar (nearly 20%) in the 3 intervention arms.
Significantly higher reduction in tobacco consumption of 45% was seen in Arm 4
with the use of pharmacotherapy. BPO employees change jobs frequently, hence
follow-up remains a major challenge. Inaccessibility of pharmacotherapy in the
developing countries should not deter tobacco cessation efforts as good tobacco
quit rates can be achieved with health education and behavioral therapy. Tobacco
cessation should be an integral activity in all BPOs, so that the employees receive
this service continuously and millions of Indias youths are protected from the
hazards of tobacco.
The business process outsourcing (BPO) industry in India is evolving
rapidly, and one of the key characteristics of this industry is the emergence of
high-end services offered by knowledge processing outsourcing (KPO)
organizations. These organizations are set to grow at a tremendous pace. Given
the people-intensive nature of this industry, efficient employee management is

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bound to play a critical role. The literature lacks studies offering insights into the
HR challenges involved and the ways in which they are addressed by KPOs. In
this context, the purpose of the study conducted by Raman et al., (2010) was to
attempt to fill this gap by presenting findings from an in-depth case study of a
KPO organization. To achieve the research objective the authors adopted an indepth case study approach. The research setting was that of a KPO organization
in India, which specializes in offering complex analytics, accounting and support
services to the real estate and financial services industries. The results of this
study highlighted the differences in the nature of work characteristics in such
organizations as compared to call centers. The study also highlighted some of the
key people management challenges that these organizations face like attracting
and retaining talent. The case company adopted formal, structured, transparent
and innovative human resource practices. The findings indicated that such
enlightened human resource practices stand on the foundations laid by an open
work environment and facilitative leadership.
The current generation of workers places greater attention on work-life
balance than the prior generation. The employee recruiting process in
professional services firms will have to take this into consideration if they are to
effectively compete in the marketplace for employees. The study of Smith and
Katherine (2010) examined research questions regarding work-life balance
perspectives of millennial job candidates. Results of the study indicated that
millennial regard work-life balance as important to a person's quality of work,
job performance, ethical decision-making, and long-term job satisfaction.
The issue of the quality of work-life has risen in popularity due to
concerns about the economic and social sustainability of European societies.
Throughout the continent, global competition, technological change and the
intensification of work are common developments which are seen to affect the
well-being of the workforce. Nevertheless, European countries differ
substantially in terms of job quality. According to earlier research, employees in

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Sweden and Denmark (and to lesser extent in Finland) report a higher quality of
work tasks than elsewhere in Europe. The aim of the work done by Hartikainen
et al., (2010) was to investigate, in a cross-national context using multivariate
techniques, whether job quality in Finland really is divergent from that of other
Nordic countries and rest of the Europe. Empirical analyses were based on the
fourth wave of the European Working Conditions Survey (EWCS) collected in
2005. In this study the authors used data from the 25 member states of the
European Union and Norway (n=21,196 interviews). The results supported
earlier findings that Finland lags behind other Nordic countries in terms of work
discretion and the perceptions of being well paid. Instead, Finnish employees
were less worried about health issues. When comparing Finland to Scandinavia,
authors did not find major differences in the amount of highly skilled jobs,
insecurity nor the quantity of jobs requiring great effort. They also examined the
associations of the dimensions of job quality to job satisfaction. The results
indicated that the subjective aspects of job quality were more important
determinants of job satisfaction, and that there were only modest differences in
the determinants of job satisfaction between country clusters.
Studies conducted in 2009
Rajagopal and Abraham (2009) conducted an empirical research in the IT
sector to assess the prominence of higher order needs among eighty information
technology professionals in Bangalore. The respondents did not give much
importance to physiological and belonging needs but the higher order needs
were given much prominence as per the empirical evidences. The two major
hypotheses developed for the study were: (1) the need for physiological and
belongingness is low among the IT professionals and (2) the need for safety,
self-esteem and self actualization is high among IT professionals. The
hypotheses were supported and contradicted Maslows principles on need
hierarchy.

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Charpe (2009) in her study on reducing back pain and improving


performance among software professionals, concluded that

employers with

personnel who are required to sit for long periods of time to perform their job
duties should take preventive measures that may reduce the risk of back pain.
The findings of the study revealed that fitness program helps to reduce the
symptoms of back pain in software professionals and increase the performance.
Hence she suggested that interventions like ergonomics and fitness programs can
prove to be beneficial in reducing the problem and increase the performance of
the workers. Thus a comprehensive fitness program was designed for the
workforce to ensure that both workers efficiency and productivity could be
sustained.
Many BPO employees acknowledged high levels of stress associated with
their jobs. Hence, BPOs need to consider measures that would alleviate some of
this stress. Ambitious performance targets, strict deadlines and close monitoring
may not be sustainable in the long-run and BPOs must review current practices
and build in measures to counter employee burnout. Several youth had indicated
recreational facilities as one of the best features of their BPOs and employees
need to be provided opportunities to use these facilities. This was revealed in the
study conducted by Vaid (2009) among unmarried young people working in the
BPO sector in Gurgaon. All the study participants had college education, most
were living away from their families, many reported that their families held nontraditional attitudes and that communication within the family was open. Of
course, all were earning well. In these respects, the sample of young people in
this study, particularly young women, is very different from youth in India more
in general.
The 10th National Economic and Social Developmental Plan of the
Government of Thailand considered quality of human beings. Quality of human
life is affected by quality of working life (QWL). Professional nurses had
responsibility for patients quality of life. Thus, professional nurses should have a

115

quality of working life more effectively before they could help patients. Personal
factors have relationships with the quality of working life. Thus, the study
conducted by Boonrod (2009) was to describe the level of the QWL, to examine
the

relationships

between

job

characteristics,

organizational

climate,

organizational commitment, and job satisfaction with the QWL and to predict the
QWL among professional nurses at Phramongkutklao Hospital, Bangkok. Two
hundred and thirty-one professional nurses, who had worked for at least 3 years,
were selected by stratified random sampling from 12 departments at
Phramongkutklao Hospital. The questionnaires were developed, consisting of
personal factors, job characteristics, organizational climate and commitment, job
satisfaction and QWL. Content validity was examined by nine experts.
Reliability was obtained at 0.97 by means of Cronbachs alpha coefficient. The
overall mean score of the level of quality of working life among professional
nurses was at a moderate level (mean = 3.412, SD = 0.459). Personal factors like
age, marital status, education, position, experience, salary and wards had no
relationships with the QWL. Job satisfaction was positive and related at a high
level, while organizational commitment, organizational climate, and job
characteristics were positive and related at a moderate level to the QWL
significantly at 0.001 level (r = 0.724, 0.694, 0.640, and 0.334). Multiple
regression analysis factors affecting QWL indicated that professional nurses
associated negative factors with job characteristics and positive factors with job
satisfaction, organizational commitment, and organizational climate at 62.10
percent (R2 = 0.621). (QWL = 0.762 + 0.336 Job satisfaction + 0.265
Organizational climate + 0.250 Organizational commitment - 0.118 Job
characteristics). In order to develop the QWL among professional nurses at
Phramongkutklao hospital, it was suggested that nursing administrators should
promote their job satisfaction, organizational commitment, organizational
climate, and job characteristics. Professional nurses who have better QWL, are
more likely to stay in their positions and provide better nursing care.

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Since the 1980s there have been major changes in workplace organization
resulting from the application of new information and communications
technologies (ICTs). The study conducted by Hector et al., (2009) used a sample
of the working population to estimate the extent to which new technology has
affected the quality of working life in New Zealand. The study addressed a range
of questions relating to workplace satisfaction, from gains in the autonomy of
workers and job variety to the extent to which workers now feel more closely
monitored. It also addressed the relationship of new workplace structures
resulting from technology adoption to more flexible working arrangements such
as telecommuting. The findings of this survey largely disabused the extremists,
with no finding that overall workplace satisfaction is significantly higher or
lower as a result of new ICT. Those who hoped that new technology would give
workers greatly enhanced autonomy, and make work more challenging, fulfilling
and meaningful will find little support here. Neither is there any evidence of
significant telecommuting, though flexibility in working hours does appear to
have increased. Self-managing teams may have replaced line supervisors to some
extent. But teams have their own dynamics and impose very real expectations on
their members, so there is no incompatibility here with the apparent sense that
pressure is higher in the more technologized workplaces.
Azahan et al., (2009) opine that a citys quality of life is often linked with
its environment and the infrastructures provided in the city. There is an argument
that if a city has good quality of life, it is because of its environment and the
infrastructures are good, and of high standard. This study examined the quality of
life status of Seremban, one of the intermediate cities in Malaysia based on three
components i.e. urban dwellers readiness, urban environment and urban
accessibility. However, rather than assessment made through physical
perspective, this research used urban dwellers perspective to justify the quality of
life status. 550 respondents from various socioeconomic backgrounds
participated in this research. The results showed that all the three components are

117

significantly contributed to the Serembans quality of life status. However, the


score for urban dwellers readiness component is higher than urban environment
component (64.2%) and urban accessibility component (60.0%) that is 68.7%. It
was also found that the quality of life of Serembans urban dwellers is quite
homogeneous, although they are from various socioeconomic backgrounds. The
findings show that Seremban has a potential to be one of the better cities to live
and to be developed in the future, as it is pertinent with its function and status as
an intermediate city.
Fursman (2009) reports the findings from a multi-method study on long
working hours and their impact on family life. It draws on data from the New
Zealand 2006 Census, a review of literature, and a small qualitative study
involving in-depth interviews with seventeen families with dependent children in
which at least one partner was working long hours. The study found that parents
working hours were driven by the requirements of their jobs, income, and the
cultures of their workplaces, as well as the satisfaction work provided. Many
parents felt unable to reduce their hours, despite believing that their hours had a
variety of negative impacts on family life. A number of factors mediated the
impact of long hours of work, including the availability of extended family for
childcare and support; having flexible work arrangements and control over hours
of work including both the number of hours and when hours were worked; and
how satisfied spouses were with both the number of hours of paid work and the
impact of these hours on the availability of the long-hours worker to spend time
with children and to do a share of the household chores. The article concludes by
noting that long hours are just one factor among many that affect family
functioning and wellbeing.
Increasing turnover of frontline staff in call centers is detrimental to the
delivery of quality service to customers, says Budhwar et al., (2009). Their study
aimed to present the context for the rapid growth of the business process
outsourcing (BPO) sector in India, and to address a critical issue faced by call

118

centre organizations in this sector - the high employee turnover. Following a


triangulation approach, two separate empirical investigations were conducted to
examine various aspects of high labor turnover rates in the call centre sector in
India. Study one examined the research issue via fifty one (51) in-depth
interviews in as many units. Study two reported results from a questionnaire
survey with 204 frontline agents across eleven (11) call centers regarding
employee turnover. The study revealed a range of reasons - from monotonous
work, stressful work environment, adverse working conditions, and lack of career
development opportunities; to better job opportunities elsewhere, which emerged
as the key causes of increasing attrition rates in the Indian call centre industry.
Cheung et al., (2009) adopted the conservation of resources model (COR,
Hobfoll Am Psychol 44:513524, Hobfoll in Stress, culture, and community: the
psychology and philosophy of stress, Plenum, New York) to examine the
associations among emotional labor, work family interference, and quality of
work life. Cross-sectional, self-reported data were obtained from 442 Hong Kong
Chinese service employees. Correlation and hierarchical regression analyses
showed that surface acting was a salient correlate of work-to-family interference,
even when organizational display rules and employees demographic information
were controlled. Furthermore, quality of work life had partially mediated the
relationship between surface acting and work-to-family interference. However,
deep acting and expression of naturally felt emotion did not relate to work-tofamily interference. Finally, the researchers found that family-to-work
interference was a salient correlate of the use of surface acting in workplace. This
study provided useful information of how adopting different emotional labor
strategies related to work family interference. Based on the results, the use of
deep acting should be promoted in workplace because it related positively to
quality of work life and it did not amplify the work-to-family interference. While
past studies often explored the role of emotional labor as the precursor of work
family interference, this study is among the first attempt to examine family-to-

119

work interference as the antecedent of emotional labor. Additionally, they had


also confirmed the role of quality of work life as an important mediator between
emotional labor-work-to-family interference.
The study of Cook et al., (2009) examined the quality of life of single
mothers making the mandatory transition from welfare to work. The Australian
government purported that the benefits of making this transition would include
higher incomes, better social participation, and improved wellbeing. It is
currently unknown, however, how single mothers engaged in welfare to work
programs evaluate their quality of life. Quality of life scores for 334 single
mothers engaged in welfare to work in Australia were compared with normative
data. Participants reported significantly lower quality of life scores than the
general population for all quality of life domains, highlighting the need to
carefully examine welfare to work policies to ensure they promote participants'
quality of life.
Previous research suggests that higher education employees experience
comparatively high levels of job stress. A range of instruments, both generic and
job-specific, has been used to measure stressors and strains in this occupational
context. The Work-related Quality of Life (WRQoL) scale is a measure designed
to capture perceptions of the working environment and employees responses to
them. The study conducted by Edwards et al., (2009) explored the factor
structure of the WRQoL scale for higher education employees. Survey data were
collected from workers in four higher education institutions in the UK (n =
2136). Confirmatory factor analysis methods were used to investigate the
explanatory power of the scale using a six-factor model (job and career
satisfaction, general well being, home work interface, stress at work, control at
work and working conditions). A first-order confirmatory factor analysis model
fitted the data well, whilst a second-order model produced an acceptable fit.
Levels of WRQoL for each factor are consistent with those found in other studies
of academic employees. Overall, higher education employees in the sample were

120

dissatisfied with their jobs and careers, were generally dissatisfied with working
conditions and control at work and reported that they are stressed at work.
Results provide evidence to support the use of the WRQoL psychometric
instrument as both a multi-dimensional and uni-dimensional measure to assess
the quality of working life of employees in higher education.
Fernandez, Rocha and Maria Da (2009) investigated the impact of
psychosocial aspects on the quality of life of teachers from municipal schools in
Natal, Brazil. In this descriptive study with a cross-sectional design, a sample of
242 elementary school teachers was included. The authors used the World Health
Organization Quality of Life (WHOQOL-brief) to assess the quality of life as
well as questions about the level of control and the psychological demand of
work from the Job Content Questionnaire. The overall evaluation of quality of
life showed that the physical and environmental domains had the lowest mean
scores. According to the psycho-social aspects, most of the subjects (67
individuals = 32.1%) were characterized as having active work (high demand and
control), followed by 54 teachers (25.8%) with demanding work (high demand
and little control). These two groups have shown to be more affected in the
assessment of physical (p < 0.001), psychological (p < 0.001), and environment
(p < 0.001) domains of quality of life. Teachers who had tasks characterized as
active and demanding were more affected in the quality of life domain. This
finding suggested the need for greater investment in health-promotion policies
among teachers.
The study carried out by Hunter, Banning and James (2009) examined
open-ended responses from 295 college students to questions regarding how they
define the construct of calling, how having a calling influences their career
development, and the extent to which the term "calling" may apply to areas of
life other than work. Results indicated that students perceived a calling as
originating from guiding forces, co-occurring with unique fit and well-being,
having altruistic features, and extending to multiple life roles. These results

121

largely support recent conceptualizations of calling in the career development


literature, and suggest themes to explore in counseling with clients who desire to
approach work as a calling.
Hammig and George (2009) investigated the prevalence and mental health
effects of an unequal work-life balance including potential gender differences. A
cross-sectional study based on a representative sample of the Swiss employed
population aged 20 to 64 (women: n = 1661; men: n = 1591). Based on a singleitem measure, more than every seventh employee in Switzerland indicated major
difficulties combining work and private life. In certain socio-demographic
categories, up to 30% showed such work-life conflict (WLC). For both genders,
work-life imbalance turned out to be a risk factor affecting mental health.
Employees with self-reported WLC presented a significantly higher relative risk
for poor self-rated health (women: aOR = 2.6/men: aOR = 2.0), negative
emotions and depression (aOR = 3.0/3.1), low energy and optimism (aOR =
2.1/1.6), fatigue (aOR = 2.4/2.6), and sleep disorders (aOR = 1.8/1.5) compared
to employees with no WLC. In Switzerland, work-life imbalance is not a
marginal phenomenon among the workforce and needs to be addressed as a
notable public and mental health issue.
Mc Graw, Heidtman and Daniella (2009) surveyed legal firms in the state
of New South Wales and assessed the provision of Work/Life Balance options
and the factors that predict their uptake. The four research questions were: does a
greater range of WLB options offered by a firm lead to a higher take up rate by
employees?; how important is top management support for WLB in influencing
employee uptake?; how important is top management support for equal reward
and promotion of employees using WLB options in predicting its use?; how does
the level of support in an employees' personal life affect their perception of the
value of WLB options. Top management support for WLB and the equal
treatment of employees who use WLB options were found to be positively
correlated in line with findings from earlier studies. However, the range of WLB

122

options on offer and perceptions of personal support outside of work were not
found to be positively correlated.
The aim of the study conducted by Merecz and Wojciech (2009) was to
indicate psycho-social stressors at work that significantly affect sickness absence
workers. Study subjects included a group of 233 randomly selected women
employed as post-office clerks. Sickness absence data covered the period of
2004-2006. The psycho-social factors were assessed by means of the Subjective
Work Characteristics Questionnaire. The hazard ratio (HR) of sickness absence
was analyzed using the Cox regression model, separately for short- (1-9 days)
medium- (10-29 days) and long-term (30 days and above) sickness absence. The
short term sickness absence risk was significantly related with the post-office
size-in the offices employing 8-12 workers, the risk was by 50% lower compared
to those employing a smaller number of workers (HR = 0.49; 95% CI: 0.27-0.90)
and unpleasant working conditions (dirt), which contributed to the increased risk
(HR = 1.30; 95% CI: 1.12-1.50). In the case of a 10-29-day absence, the risk was
slightly elevated by the demand of long-term vigilance, financial responsibility,
and strictly determined breaks at work. In the model of long-term sickness
absence, a significantly higher risk was noted when the number of employees
was 16-25 compared to a smaller number of employees (HR = 2.92; 95% CI:
1.09-7.82), non-occupational, self-assessed workload was high (HR = 2.97; 95%
CI: 1.34-6.62) or moderate (HR = 2.22; 95% CI: 1.11-4.44) compared to selfassessed low workload, and the work space was limited (HR = 1.21; 95% CI:
1.00-1.47). The analysis showed a significant effect of stressogenic work
conditions on the patterns of sickness absence. The findings may help in
developing programs intended to reduce sickness absence through limiting the
prevalence of unfavorable conditions at workplaces.

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Increasing evidence from the empirical economic and psychological


literature suggests that positive and negative well-being are more than opposite
ends of the same phenomenon. Two separate measures of the dependent variable
may therefore be needed when analyzing the determinants of subjective wellbeing. Boes et al., (2009) investigated asymmetries in the effect of income on
subjective well-being with a single-item measure of general life satisfaction.
Using data from the German Socio-Economic Panel 1984-2004, and a flexible
multiple-index ordered profit panel data model with varying thresholds, they
found that income has only a minor effect on high satisfaction but significantly
reduces dissatisfaction.
The purpose of the research conducted by Wickramasinghe, Kumara and
Saman (2009) was to identify competency requirements that discriminate
between knowledge process outsourcing (KPO) and IT-enabled business process
outsourcing (ITES-BPO) industries. There are 25 firms operating in Sri Lanka
that fall into the category of ITES-BPO/KPO. HR managers of the 25 firms and a
random sample of 117 employees from those 25 firms responded to the survey.
In addition to descriptive statistics, independent sample t-test and logistic
regression were used in the data analysis. The findings revealed that there are
differences in competency requirements for KPO and BPO services. Further,
demographic variables, namely, age, level of education, and total years of
industry experience shape competency requirements. Despite greater volume of
theoretical foundations and empirical evidence for people management in
BPO/KPO services, specific literature investigating and comparing competency
requirements, recruitment, selection and training of ITES-BPO and KPO
employees is scarce. Therefore, a research addressing those in a South Asian
country that is considered as active and promising destination for ITESBPO/KPO services could provide practitioners with key information that could
enable them to make informed managerial decisions.

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The study conducted by Frain and Malachy (2009) did an initial analysis
of variables generally associated with empowerment towards perceived beliefs
concerning quality of work life domains for individuals with disabilities. The
model examined the domains of importance, satisfaction, control and degree of
interference of disability that an individual feels towards work. The internet
based study used results from 70 individuals with disabilities in varying aspects
of work. The variables composing empowerment that correlated strongly with the
work domains include: self-advocacy, self-efficacy, perceived stigma, and family
resiliency as measured through coping. Quality of Life concerning work was
measured through the DSC-C a domain specific QOL instrument.
The study of Lee, Singhapakdi and Sirgy (2009) further validates a needbased measure of quality of work life (QWL) developed by Sirgy et al. (Soc
Indic Res 55:4656, 2001). They conceptualized the QWL construct in terms of
employee satisfaction with two sets of major needs: lower- and higher-order
needs. Lower-order needs comprise health/safety needs and economic/family
needs. Higher-order needs involve social needs, esteem needs, self-actualization
needs, knowledge needs, and aesthetic needs. The results from a survey of
marketing professionals largely supported the construct validity and predictive
validity of the QWL measure. As expected, QWL has positive influence on esprit
de corps, job satisfaction, and organizational commitment among marketing
managers.
Studies conducted in 2008
Many factors determine the meaning of quality of work-life (QWL), one
of which is work environment. A group of workforces that is greatly affected in
QWL as a result of dynamic changes in work environment is information
technology (IT) professionals. The study conducted by Rethinam and Ismail
(2008) reviews the meaning of QWL, analyses constructs of QWL based on
models and past research from the perspective of IT professionals in many

125

countries and in Malaysia. The constructs of QWL discussed were: health and
well-being, job security, job satisfaction, competency development, work and
non-work life balance. The study concludes that QWL from the perspective of IT
professionals is challenging both to the individuals and organizations.
The purpose of the research carried out by Dolan et al., (2008) was

to

test a theoretically driven model of the relationship between job demands,


employees motivation and resources, and supervisory support on employees
quality of work lives and their general health. The study used large survey data
that were collected in the years 1995, 2002, and 2003 respectively, drawn from
the public health care employees sector in Catalonia (Spain). Albeit crosssectional methodology, the study embraces an additional retrospective and
longitudinal design. The 2002 cross-sectional study (n 2,926) supported the
assertion made by stress researchers regarding the extent to which both job
demands and lack of supervisory support predict low QWL and negative health
outcomes: perceived motivation, resources and capabilities also appear as
determinants but to a lesser extent. The stability of the results obtained was tested
retrospectively by cross-legging the model for the 1995 survey (n 2,901). In
addition, a follow-up study (i.e. longitudinal) was conducted in 2003 (n
10,003) to see whether the model still holds. By and large, the three-level design
showed the stability of the prediction in the same direction.
The purpose of the study by Ramstad (2008) was to answer the question:
how can organizations be developed in a way that it improves simultaneously
performance and the quality of working life (QWL)? The focus was particularly
on diverse organizational and management practices and the nature of
development process.

The empirical data consisted of self-assessments of

development projects implemented at workplaces as a part of the Finnish


Workplace Development Programme (1996-2005). The self-assessments have
been gathered separately from management, staff and experts used in the project.
The data are based on a sample of 1,113 responses from 409 development

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projects. The research approach was solution-oriented, seeking factors that can
promote concurrent improvements in both performance and the QWL.
Concerning the work, management and organizational practices, the findings
showed that comprehensive development of organization, i.e. implementation of
practices is associated with simultaneous improvement in performance and the
QWL. Second, concerning the nature of development method, the study showed
that employee participation in planning and implementation phase, close
collaboration during the process, the methods used by the experts and external
networking were related to simultaneous outcomes at workplaces.
Ongori and Evans (2008) conducted a study among the employees
working in public sector organizations in Botswana. They found that the stress at
work affects the employees in many ways leading to poor quality of work life
which was the main reason for employee turnover in most of the organisations.
The researchers suggested that managers should develop the appropriate
measures to minimize occupational stress.

Sen Gupta and Adhikari (2008) made a study on civil hospital nurses in
West Bengal on role stress among nurses. They measured ten types of role
stressors on 89 civil hospital nurses using a modified version of ORS scale
translated into their local language, Bengali. The prominent role stressors were
identified (role expectation conflict, inter-role distance and role overload) along
with their consequences and also recommendations were made to cope up with
the stress.

A survey was carried out by Bhuyar et al., (2008), in Pune and Mumbai to
find out the mental, physical and social health problems of call centre workers. In
their study they found majority of the workers facing sleep disturbances
associated with mental stress and anxiety, circadian rhythm disturbances due to
night shifts, physical problems like muscular-skeletal disorders, obesity, eye and

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hearing problems and psychosocial problems like family life disruption, use of
tobacco and alcohol and faulty eating habits.
Gupta (2008) in her study on stress among BPO employees discussed and
stated that because of immense pressure in dealing with their clients day and
night, the BPO employees could not balance their professional and personal
lives. She also found out that since

employees are becoming aware of their

health, are adopting alternatives to lead a normal healthy life. The corporate and
in-house clinics are also working together to help the employees to combat stress
in the workplace.
The major objective of the study conducted by Saad et al., (2008) was to
find out the employees perception of their work-life quality in a private
university. Previous studies indicated that employees perception on work life
quality significantly influenced their job satisfaction. 251 employees in the
university participated in this study. Ten variables to measure Quality Work Life
(QWL) were examined namely support from organization, work-family conflict,
relationship with peers, self competence, impact on job, meaningfulness of job,
optimism on organizational change, autonomy, access to resources and time
control. All these variables were tested for their relationship with job satisfaction.
The test indicated that each of the QWL variables on its own is a salient predictor
of job satisfaction. However, 7 QWL variables are no longer significant
predictors for job satisfaction when all the 10 QWL variables were entered into
the regression equation. Using multiple linear regressions, only 3 QWL variables
(meaningfulness of job, optimism on organizational change and autonomy) were
found to be significantly related to job satisfaction. However, they only explained
28.8% of the variance in job satisfaction, F (10, 240) = 11.134, p<.05.
Noah (2008) carried out an investigation of the existing level of worker
participation in management decision making within Nigerian work environment.
The study involved a survey in which a total of two hundred and twenty seven

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(217) non management employees drawn from two work organizations in Lagos
(Flour Mills Nigeria Plc and Niger Insurance Plc) were used as subjects.
Interview schedule and in-depth interview were the main research techniques
adopted for data collection while percentage distribution and chi-square
statistical techniques were used to analyze the data collected for the study.
Results showed that employees in both organizations demonstrated high interest
in participation in the decision making process within their respective work
places. However, the actual level of involvement in management decision
making demonstrated by the employees was found to be relatively low. There
was significant relationship between education and employees involvement in
decision making at Flour Mills Nigeria Plc. In Niger Insurance Plc, there was
significant relationship between age and employees involvement in decision
making as well as between frequency of employees consultation and
organizational commitment. The study revealed a growing desire of nonmanagement employees in the Nigerian work environment to exercise greater
involvement in the decision making process of their enterprises.
Thavannoor and Rajagopal (2008) conducted a study to identify and
analyze the factors which contribute to work life imbalances among the middle
level executives of IT sector in Bangalore city. The study was conducted on 72
executives selected randomly. A well-designed questionnaire was used to collect
the desired information from the subjects. The study revealed that less time for
self and family, regularly doing office work at home, work delegating difficulty,
work more than 55 hours per week and week-end work were found to be
contributing to the work-life imbalance experienced by the employees. The
empirical evidences on the various factors related to work life imbalance
highlighted the magnitude of the problem faced by the IT professionals,
especially at the middle level, irrespective of gender, at the early stages of life.
The mobilization and full use of people in their activities have
consequently occurred by the changes in management practices that occurred in

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organizations, says Timossi et al., (2008). They conducted a study with the
objective of proposing an adaptation from the model of Walton (1975). The
criteria were transcribed in the interrogative form and the scale of answers was
converted into a Likert scale with five alternatives. The verification of the inner
consistency of the instrument was achieved from the Cronbachs alpha
coefficient (0.96). Such result guarantees a very high consistency to the
instrument adopted. It can be concluded that the adaptation from the Model of
Walton, proposed in their study, allows, through more clarified questions and a
more objective scale of answers, its application to people with low schooling
level, guarantying the obtaining of reliable results without changing criteria and
objectives of the original instrument.
According to Kalliath and Brough (2008), although the term workfamily
balance is widely employed, an agreed definition of this term has proved elusive.
After reviewing the current, somewhat confusing, array of definitions commonly
expressed within the literature, they opined that the current definitions of work
family balance are of limited value for both the theoretical advancement of the
construct and for practical human resource interventions. They reviewed six
conceptualizations of workfamily balance found in the literature: (1) multiple
roles; (2) equity across multiple roles; (3) satisfaction between multiple roles; (4)
fulfillment of role salience between multiple roles; (5) relationship between
conflict and facilitation; and (6) perceived control between multiple roles. Based
on this review they distilled the core meaning of workfamily balance as it has
evolved in the literature and proposed a new definition of workfamily balance.
Also they encourage further research to consider this new definition, specifically
in terms of the development and validation of a measure that taps the new
definition of workfamily balance.
In order to examine the antecedents of success of business process
outsourcing relationships, Daityari, Saini, and Gupta (2008) conducted an
empirical study of 124 business process outsourcing relationships in some of

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Indias most established BPO vendors. The hypothesis stated that the degree of
control and partnership quality would have a positive interactive association with
outsourcing success. This was tested using Hierarchical Regression Analysis and
Median Split Analysis. Results of both analysis indicated that while degree of
control does not have significant positive relationship with outsourcing success,
partnership quality nor its interaction with degree of control enjoyed any
relationship of significance with outsourcing success.
Approximately one fifth of workers are engaged in some kind of shift
work. The harmful effects of shift work on the health and work-life balance of
employees are well known. A range of organizational interventions has been
suggested to address these negative effects by.

Whitehead et al., (2008)

undertook a systematic review of experimental and quasi-experimental studies,


from any country, in any language, that evaluated the effects on health and worklife balance of organizational-level interventions that redesign shift work
schedules. Twenty-seven electronic databases (medical, social science,
economic) were searched. Data extraction and quality appraisal were carried out
by two independent reviewers. Narrative synthesis was performed. The review
was conducted between October 2005 and November 2006. Twenty-six studies
were found relating to a variety of organizational interventions. No one type of
intervention was found to be consistently harmful to workers. However, three
types were found to have beneficial effects on health and work-life balance: (1)
switching from slow to fast rotation, (2) changing from backward to forward
rotation and (3) self-scheduling of shifts. Improvements were usually at little or
no direct organizational cost. However, there were concerns about the
generalizability of the evidence, and no studies reported on impacts on health
inequalities. This review reinforces the findings of epidemiologic and laboratorybased research by suggesting that certain organizational-level interventions can
improve the health of shift workers, their work-life balance, or both. This

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evidence could be useful when designing interventions to improve the experience


of shift work.
The research carried out by Danford et al., (2008) measures the effects of
workplace partnership and selected high performance work practices on four
different dimensions of employee experience. Whilst the partnership-high
performance work systems nexus seems to have little impact on employees job
satisfaction or sense of attachment, it does, however, have a negative impact on
both workplace stress and employee evaluations of union performance. The
analysis thus questions common assumptions about the inevitability of mutual
gain and the necessity of employer/union partnership.
Organizations wield great power over the structure of contemporary life.
Using the rhetorical method of cluster analysis, Hoffman, Cowan and Renee
(2008) investigated the construction of work/life issues on web sites of
companies on Fortune's 2004 list of 100 best companies to work for. By
identifying key terms and the terms that clustered around them, they uncovered a
corporate ideology of work/life: 1) work is the most important element of life; 2)
life means family; 3) individuals are responsible for balance; and 4)
organizations control work/life programs. Authors concluded that organizational
work/life programs may increase, rather than decrease, the amount of control
organizations exercise over personal life. They also explored the implications of
this finding as well as directions for future research.
Studies conducted in 2007
Axtell et al., (2007) proposed that an important prerequisite for helping
customers is the capacity to take the customer's perspective. If this is the case,
then it is also important to consider the factors that might facilitate perspective
taking. To investigate this, 347 customer service agents in a UK call centre were
surveyed on the antecedents and outcomes of customer-oriented perspective
taking. Managers also supplied ratings of helping behavior for 141 of the service

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agents. Structural equation modeling showed positive relationship between


perspective taking and self-reported helping, and this relationship was partially
mediated by empathy. Perspective taking was also positively related to managers'
ratings of helping but this relationship was not mediated by empathy. In turn,
service agents' perspective taking was predicted by the perceived reciprocity of
customers and by having a positive customer role orientation (which was itself
predicted by job enrichment). Predictors of helping customers included
perspective taking, empathy, and having an integrated understanding of the call
centre's services. Enhancing employees' perspective taking and their integrated
understanding of the organization's services might thus be hitherto neglected
avenues for enhancing the quality of customer service.
Ballou et al., (2007) examined the concept of work life quality for
corporate employees. The increased complexity of modern business in the era of
global competition has led to increased stress for all participants. Their study
revealed that corporations which focus on creating a more satisfied and loyal
work force can be shown to improve their financial performance by all
accounting metrics.
With talent management becoming an area of growing concern in the
literature, the purpose of the study conducted by Bhatnagar (2007) was to
investigate talent management and its relationship to levels of employee
engagement using a mixed method research design. The first phase was a survey
on a sample of 272 BPO/ITES employees, using Gallup q12 or Gallup
Workplace Audit. Focus group interview discussion was based on reasons for
attrition and the unique problems of employee engagement. In the second phase,
one of the BPO organizations from the phase I sample was chosen at random and
exit interview data was analyzed using factor analysis and content analysis. The
results were in the expected direction and fulfilled the research aims of the
current study. In the first phase low factor loadings indicated low engagement
scores at the beginning of the career and at completion of 16 months with the

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organization. High factor loadings at intermediate stages of employment were


indicative of high engagement levels, but the interview data reflected that this
may mean high loyalty, but only for a limited time. In the second phase factor
loadings indicated three distinct factors of organizational culture, career planning
along with incentives and organizational support. The first two were indicative of
high attrition.
Voice disorders are common among teachers, with adverse consequences
for their work and quality of life. The study of Jardim et al., (2007) focused on
factors associated with voice-related quality of life among female teachers in the
municipal school system in Belo Horizonte, Southeast Brazil. A cross-sectional
study with 2,133 female teachers was conducted, using the Voice-Related
Quality of Life (VRQL) questionnaire, which has two domains: socio-emotional
and physical. Teachers were grouped into quartiles based on the distribution of
the final score in each domain. Those in the lowest quartile were then compared
with all the others for a number of factors, using multiple logistic regression
analysis. Less creativity at work and poor relationship with pupils were
associated with worse voice-related quality of life in both domains. Mental
disorders (GHQ12 > 4) were associated with worse voice-related quality of life
in the socio-emotional domain, and intra-class noise with worse voice-related
quality of life in the physical domain. Improvements in working conditions are
key factors for achieving better voice-related quality of life among teachers.
A literature review of 105 studies on the effects of extended daily working
hours was conducted by Peter (2007). Potential negative effects of extended
working hours are discussed by the author: more accidents on the job; more
accidents off the job; reduced duration and quality of sleep due to moonlighting;
sleepiness; reduced alertness; fatigue; adverse effects on performance; prolonged
toxic exposure; adverse effects on health; increased absenteeism; problems
communicating with managers and problems while driving home. Potential
positive effects of extended working hours are discussed: Less travel time and

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costs; more time for the family, social life, and domestic duties; increased
satisfaction with working hours; fewer handovers; and less overtime. No firm
conclusions can be drawn because of the partly contradictory results and the
methodological problems of many studies. However, caution is advised when
considering the introduction of extended work shifts, particularly where public
safety is at stake. A checklist is provided (concerning work load, breaks, staffing
level, systematic assessments of health and safety factors) to support decisions
for or against the use of extended work shifts.
The quality of work-life has been focused and defined by the European
Commission (EC). In the study conducted by Royuela et al., (2007) the authors
compared the EC definition with the academic one and tried to see how close
they are. They also analyzed the possibility of applying the institutional
definition to the Spanish case through the development of specific indicators.
The main conclusions were that QWL is increasingly important for policy
makers. In addition, it is essential to have objective indicators and to conduct
surveys in order to reliably measure QWL.
Quality of work-life (QWL) has been gaining increasing attention in
health care settings, says Sale et al (2007). According to them, no QWL data for
cancer centers have been published. A participatory approach was used to
develop a QWL survey that was administered to staff in Year 1 (Y1) and Year 2
(Y2) in a Canadian ambulatory cancer center. The findings revealed that overall
staff QWL scores were moderate in Y1 and Y2; however, there was considerable
variation among four main employee groups (physicians, nurses, physicists,
radiation therapists). The survey data provided a benchmark against which other
cancer centers could be compared.
The study carried out by Tamagawa et al., (2007) aimed to explore the
criteria for shift work tolerance and to investigate the relationships between
personality traits and states and shift work tolerance. Eighty-nine policemen and

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police women completed a questionnaire, once during consecutive night shifts


and again during rotating shifts, and their responses were used to assess anxiety,
emotional control, positive and negative effect, health complaints, sleep quality,
difficulties in social and domestic life, and perceptions about shift work. Both the
criteria for tolerance and the relationship between tolerance and personality
varied according to shift type. Night shift tolerance involved four factors-somatic
health, flexibility, sleep and sleep need-while rotating shift tolerance involved
three factors-somatic health, flexibility and fatigue. Tolerance of shift work was
associated with anxiety, repressive emotional style and mood. During night
shifts, anxiety was the most influential personality factor for the somatic health
and sleep dimensions of shift tolerance. During rotating shifts, positive and
negative moods, rather than trait personality factors, were important predictors of
the somatic health and fatigue shift tolerance dimensions. These results suggest a
mechanism for more effective matching of workers to suitable shift schedules.
Vanlaar et al., (2007) developed and tested the psychometric properties of
the Work-Related Quality of Life scale (WRQL) for healthcare workers. As
problems associated with stress and job satisfaction are evident for healthcare
workers and nurses, a reliable tool to assess employees' quality of working life is
required. However, previous research has produced inconsistent factor structures
and inadequate psychometric properties for a range of quality of working life
measures. This new scale expanded the concept of quality of working life by
incorporating a broad six-factor structure derived from a theoretical review of the
field. Authors used data from a 2003 survey of 953 healthcare workers. Eightysix per cent of the sample was female and 36% had been employed by the
organization for 1-5 years. Approximately 50% of workers were employed fulltime. Both exploratory and confirmatory factor analysis using split-half data sets
produced a good fit and a reliable 23-item, six-factor measurement model of
Work-Related Quality of Life. The factors generated were labeled: Job and

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Career Satisfaction, General Well-Being, Home-Work Interface, Stress at Work,


Control at Work and Working Conditions.
The research by Wright et al., (2007) provides further clarification to the
age-old quest to better understand the happy/productive worker thesis. Using data
from 109 managers employed by a large (over 5000 employees) customer
services organization on the West Coast of the United States, both job
satisfaction (r=.36, p<.01, 95% CI=.18 to .52) and psychological well-being
(PWB; r=.43, p<.01, 95% CI=.26 to .58) were associated with supervisory
performance ratings. Using Fredrickson's (2001) broaden-and-build model as the
theoretical base, the authors found that PWB moderates the relation between job
satisfaction and job performance. Consistent with Fredrickson's model,
performance was highest when employees reported high scores on both PWB and
job satisfaction. This moderating effect of PWB may account for some of the
inconsistent results of previous studies.
The study conducted in Cochin International Airport Pvt. Ltd. by
Chirayath (2007) attempted to highlight the occupational stress factors and
discussed the impact of stress on the employees performance. In her study it was
revealed that out of 75 employees surveyed, 40 employees underwent
occupational stress which in turn affected their quality of work life as per
empirical findings.
Chimanikire et al., (2007) studied the factors affecting job satisfaction
among academic professionals in tertiary institutions of Zimbabwe against the
backdrop of high brain drain in the sector. A total of eighty respondents were
selected randomly from departmental lists and interviewed using structured
questionnaires. Key informants such as administration personnel were also
interviewed using semi-structured schedules. The results of the study showed that
a greater proportion of the academic staff was not satisfied with their jobs.
Reasons for dissatisfaction include high volume of work, inadequate salaries,

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allowances, loans to facilities purchase of housing stands and cars. The study
highlighted the need to craft a responsive incentive package that addresses the
concerns of academic staff on issues related to job satisfaction and thus save
from international migration to other countries.
Quality of work-life includes some objective and subjective factors which
may condition operations and other inner aspects concerning the quality of
relationships and methods of management, says Argentero et al., (2007). They
conducted a study to analyze the quality of work-life indicators in a cohort of
Italian health workers. Semi-structured interviews were conducted, to assess the
quality of work life through the identification of the most important indicators
and to evaluate the degree of satisfaction and the importance of each indicator.
112 health operators were interviewed. All workers belonged to the same local
health service in North West Italy. The results of the study pointed out some
macro areas which are relevant to define work life quality of the analyzed
sample: relationships with colleagues, work organization, taking care of patients,
professional ability and professional growth. The weekly number of patients
seemed to be important to determine the differences among the workers in the
quality perceived in their work life. The collected data contribute to define which
indicators must be taken into consideration in order to complete an evaluation of
the quality of health organizations; this includes also the subjective variables
connected to the quality of the work-life.
Cleveland et al., (2007) opine that smaller, more efficient workforce hotel
organizations are competing to retain highly valued managers. According to
them, work stress and burnout are often cited as precursors to work and family
stress, and together these factors influence employee intentions to leave an
organization. However, work and family issues have received little attention in
the hospitality and tourism literature. Using focus groups and semi-structured
interviews with three groups of participants (new entrants into the hotel industry,
hotel managers, and their spouses), the authors explored the connections among

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work characteristics, work stress, and the workfamily interface. Results of the
multisource qualitative research suggested that long, unpredictable hours created
individual and family-related stress. Furthermore, there was agreement among
the three sources regarding the stressors and benefits associated with working in
the hotel industry.
Studies conducted in 2006
Tsigilis, Zachopoulou and Grammatikopoulos (2006) examined the
perceived levels of burnout and job satisfaction of Greek early educators, across
public and private sector. One hundred and seventy eight childhood educators
participated in the study. 108 were working in the public sector, 67 in private
sector, whereas three did not respond. Participants were administered the
Employees Satisfaction Inventory (ESI, Koustelios and Bagiatis, 1997) and the
emotional exhaustion subscale of the Maslachs Burnout Inventory (MBI,
Maslach and Jackson, 1986). Results showed that early educators experienced
moderate levels of emotional exhaustion. Public sector early educators were
more satisfied from the job itself than their counterparts in the private sector.
Regression analysis showed that job satisfaction facets which contributed to early
educators burnout varied as a function of their workplace. In particular,
satisfaction from the nature of the job and working conditions negatively
contributed to the prediction of public sector early educators emotional
exhaustion levels. On the other hand, increased levels of satisfaction from the
nature of the job and immediate supervisor were associated with reduced private
sector early educators emotional exhaustion levels.
Though work-life balance is a European Union policy priority, within
Europe there are considerable variations in the nature & extent of supports that
national governments have offered to dual-earner families. In general, the Nordic
welfare states offer the highest level of supports, although other countries, such
as France, have historically offered extensive childcare supports to working

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mothers. Crompton (2006) examined national variations in reported levels of


work-life conflict, drawing upon questions fielded in the 2002 Family module
International Social Survey Programme (ISSP) surveys for Britain, France,
Finland, Norway & Portugal. They found evidence of a 'societal effect' in the
cases of Finland & Norway, in that significantly lower levels of work-life
conflict are reported in these countries even after a range of factors have been
controlled for. However, support for childcare in France does not appear to have
had a similar impact. Further explorations of the data revealed that the domestic
division of labor is relatively traditional in France and that this is associated with
higher levels of work-life conflict.
The study of Ginevicius et al., (2006) revealed multidimensional nature of
organizational culture. When investigating its influence on success, only
performance influencing dimensions must be under consideration as per finding
of their study. The authors suggest the ways for reducing their number: content
analysis and hierarchical structuring method. The system (list) of dimensions was
formed by using the mentioned methods. Questionnaire was made. Relationship
between dimensions and their influence on performance was tested.
Hsu and George (2006) carried out a study describing the quality of
working life of nurses in Taiwan. The purpose of the study was to gather data on
which to base a questionnaire to be used in further research. Nurses often
complain of overwork and underpay. Problems persist with nurses' job
satisfaction, stress, organizational commitment and intent to leave. 'Quality of
working life' is a system of analyzing how people experience work: it relates to
job satisfaction, intent to leave, turnover rate, personality and work stress.
However, reliable information on hospital nurses' quality of working life is
limited. A descriptive study was carried out with a convenience sample. A total
of 16 focus groups in one medical centre and five regional hospitals informed a
quality of working life framework. Each group had three to five participants who
were registered nurses in medical or surgical wards with at least two years'

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nursing experience, and who held a position below assistant nurse manager. The
data were collected in 2000.

A total of 56 nurses' quality of working life

categories were identified and fitted into six dimensions: socio-economic


relevance, demography, organizational aspects, work aspects, human relation
aspects and self-actualization. The authors

focused on issues emphasized by

focus group participants. These were managing shift work within the demands of
family life; accommodation; support resources; and nurses' clinical ladder system
and salary system.
The relative lack of research on employees' reactions to performance
appraisal feedback is the primary impetus for the study of Jawahar (2006) which
advances this important, but neglected, research area by investigating potential
predictors and consequences of satisfaction with appraisal feedback. Survey
responses from 112 employees were matched with their performance ratings
from two different appraisal periods to test specific hypotheses. Results indicate
that satisfaction with rater and previous performance ratings influence
employees' satisfaction with appraisal feedback. Satisfaction with appraisal
feedback was positively related to job satisfaction and organizational
commitment and negatively related to turnover intentions. Supervisory status
moderated the relationship between satisfaction with appraisal feedback and
subsequent performance such that the relationship existed only for supervisory
employees who, in addition to receiving feedback about their own performance,
also provided feedback to their subordinates.
Occupational mental health research has been focusing on the relationship
between work stress and depression. However, the impacts of work stress on
anxiety disorders and of imbalance between work and family life on workers'
mental health have not been well studied. The study of Wang and Li (2006)
investigated the association between levels of perceived work stress and of
imbalance between work and family/personal lives and current mood/anxiety
disorders. It was a cross-sectional study using data from the Canadian

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Community Health Survey-Mental Health and Well-being (CCHS-1.2)


(n=36,984). Mood and anxiety disorders were measured using the World Mental
Health-Composite International Diagnostic Interview. The one-month prevalence
of mood and anxiety disorders among those with a work stress score at the 75th
percentile value and above was 3.6% and 4.0%. Among those who reported that
their work and family/personal lives never balanced in the past month, the 1month prevalence of mood and anxiety disorders was 21.2% and 17.9%. In
multivariate analyses, work stress and imbalance between work and
family/personal lives were independently associated with mood and anxiety
disorders. There was no evidence that perceived work stress interacted with
imbalance between work and family/personal lives to increase the likelihood of
having mental disorders. Gender was associated with anxiety disorders, but not
with major depressive disorder and mood disorders.
A mathematical model was developed by Whitt and Ward (2006) to help
analyze the benefit in contact-center performance obtained from increasing
employee (agent) retention, which is in turn obtained by increasing agent job
satisfaction. The contact-center performance may be restricted to a traditional
productivity measure such as the number of calls answered per hour, or it may
include a broader measure of the quality of service, e.g., revenue earned per hour
or the number of problems successfully resolved per hour. The analysis was
based on an idealized model of a contact center in which the number of
employed agents is constant over time, assuming that a new agent is immediately
hired to replace each departing agent. The agent employment periods are
assumed to be independent and identically distributed random variables with a
general agent-retention probability distribution, which depends on management
policy and actions. The steady-state staff-experience distribution is obtained from
the agent-retention distribution by applying renewal theory. An increasing realvalued function specifies the average performance as a function of agent
experience. Convenient closed-form expressions for the overall performance as a

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function of model elements are derived when either the agent-retention


distribution or the performance function has exponential structure. Management
actions may cause the agent-retention distribution to change. The model
described the consequences of such changes on the long-run average staff
experience and the long-run average performance.
Chirayath (2006), made an attempt to determine the relationship between
personality types and stress management/stress resistance ability and ways to
cope with stressful situations. The study was conducted among both the
executives and nonexecutive employees of BHEL in the department of Projects
and Maintenance. The study investigated various sources of stress, stress coping
strategies and remedial measures in order to create a stress-free environment
which leads to better quality of working life of employees.
Chirayath (2006) conducted a study among female cashew workers in
Kollam district of Kerala to identify the sources of stress and coping mechanisms
adopted by the workers so as to enhance the quality of their working life. The
study also intended to identify the groups necessary for counseling. A sample of
155 female cashew workers from 39 cashew factories was selected for the study.
The psychological variables identified for the study were job stress, familyinduced stress, job satisfaction, and ways of coping, personality components and
manifestation of stress in terms of symptoms. The findings of the study showed
that the women workers have both job stress and family-induced stress, majority
of respondents reacted in a passive way to the stress coping mechanisms. Hindu
Chetty caste in particular was more active in coping with stress.
A high quality of work-life (QWL) is essential for organizations to attract
and retain employees, says Saraji and Dargahi (2006). Their research aimed to
provide insights into the positive and negative attitudes of Tehran University of
Medical Sciences (TUMS) Hospital employees from their quality of life. A
cross- sectional, descriptive and analytical study was conducted among 908

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TUMS hospital employees by questionnaire at 15 studied hospitals. A stratified


random sampling technique was used to select respondents as nursing, supportive
and paramedical groups. The results showed that the majority of employees were
dissatisfied with occupational health and safety, intermediate and senior
managers , their income, balance between the time they spent working and with
family and also indicated that their work was not interesting and satisfying.
TUMS hospital employees responding to this survey have a poor quality of work
life. The authors suggested more training and education for TU MS hospital
managers on QWL.
The demand for work-life-balance solutions by employees and managers
is expanding at an unprecedented rate, says Bird (2006). As a result, work-life
balance is an increasingly hot topic in boardrooms and government halls today.
Further, he asserts that over the coming decade it will be one of the most
important issues that executives and human resource professionals will be
expected to manage. Executives now recognize that organizational objectives and
individual work-life objectives are not either/or choices, he continues. It is not
Do we get the most out of our people? Or do they have lives? Instead it is,
The way we get the most out of our people is by encouraging each of them to
have a life. It is the job of the senior management team and specifically HR to
make this happen in ways that are consistent with the organizations business and
customer-service objectives. Unfortunately, even as the demand for work-life
solutions has skyrocketed, many work-life efforts have fallen short of their
promise and potential to deliver the desired results for the individual and the
organization. Positive new trends in the field, however, show that results can live
up to expectations, the conclusion authors have arrived at.
The number of call centers has increased rapidly over the last decade as
technological advancements have increased the geographical reach and potential
applicability of call centre operations to a wide variety of industries and business
functions (Hannif, 2006). These developments have been followed closely by an

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influx of research on various aspects of call centre operations. Issues associated


with job quality have arisen from various call centre studies; often incidentally as
researchers examine other facets of call centers and their functioning. However,
there is yet to be a study that deliberately and systematically examines job quality
in this context, despite its being widely accepted that job quality is an issue of
increasing significance in this sector. His study on the job quality in call centers
took the first step towards addressing this deficit by conducting a review of the
extant call centre literature, and collecting and reporting on the findings that
emerge which can be associated with the concept of job quality.

A job

characteristics approach was used to evaluate this evidence in relation to specific


themes and categories derived through the job quality literature. Important links
between the job quality and call centre literatures were highlighted; major issues
associated with the quality of call centre work are discussed, and key gaps in the
research are revealed.

Finally, some direction for future research also was

proposed, particularly, the need for investigation into the key determinants of job
quality in the call centre context; an examination of how job quality may be
improved; and the impact of key job quality factors on employees and
organizations.
Werner (2006) studied about the work dysfunctions and their
consequences as experienced by call center agents using a focus group
methodology. The sample comprised of four different groups of randomly
selected call center agents with a total of twenty seven participants. The findings
of the study revealed that stress is the primary harbinger of other dysfunctions,
many exacerbated by the stressful nature of the shift work and the resultant worklife imbalance. Stress encountered due to ineffective systems and poor training
process. Work space ergonomic considerations were thought not to add to call
center dysfunction.
Research findings from several countries suggest that academic work has
become comparatively stressful, with potentially serious consequences for the

145

workforce and the quality of higher education. Kinman, Jones and Fiona (2006)
examined work demands, work-life balance and well-being in UK academic
staff. Job demands and levels of psychological distress were high and working
during evenings and weekends was commonplace. Most academics surveyed,
however, were at least moderately satisfied with their jobs. Work-life balance
was generally poor and most respondents wished for more separation between
their work and home lives. Academics that reported more work-life conflict and
perceived a greater discrepancy between their present and ideal levels of worklife integration tended to be less healthy, less satisfied with their jobs, and more
likely to have seriously considered leaving academia. On the whole, academics
that perceived more control over their work, more schedule flexibility and more
support from their institutions had a better work-life balance. These factors,
however, failed to moderate the relationship between work demands and
perceptions of conflict between work and home.
The Brazilian army is worrying about the quality total in an increasing
form, observes Campos and Souza (2006). They conducted a study to determine
the preponderant variables in quality of working life by means of multivariate
analysis using Waltons (1973) criteria. A sample of 150 army personnel was
selected as the respondents from South Brazil. A 26 polar affirmation
questionnaire was developed using Waltons criteria. Data was analyzed using
factor analysis and cluster analysis. The multivariate analysis concluded that 26
variables can be reduced into an acceptable five factor model.
The human factor plays an important and crucial role in the development
of any country, says Jayamma and Naik (2006). They conducted a study among
the employees of Life Insurance Corporation of India (LIC) of Kadapa division
in Andhra Pradesh. The objectives of this study were to examine the quality of
work life of employees in terms of economic and social aspects, to evaluate the
practices of quality of work life in LIC of India and to suggest measures to
improve the quality of working life of employees. The study revealed that most

146

of the employees were satisfied in terms of salary and other benefits. Social and
affiliation needs were partially satisfied. The study suggested placing the right
person in the right job to utilize his/her abilities optimally and to improve the
working conditions and ambience of the work place.
Studies conducted in 2005
An issue of relationship between exposure to psycho-social factors and
health status of employees was presented by Dudek and Bodan (2005) in a
review of literature. It is difficult to find hard evidence that could reliably
confirm this relationship. Methodological difficulties encountered in measuring
psycho-social factors and health effects and designing research procedures are
responsible for equivocal study results, according to them. However, a huge
number of articles presenting the results of numerous studies made them
convinced that many human organs are targets of dangerous impact of stress
evoked by job conditions. Bearing in mind that work processes and working
conditions become more and more stressogenic, one can expect that in the near
future psycho-social factors will form a group of the most dangerous health
hazards. Therefore, it is an urgent challenge facing the occupational health
service (OHS) to adapt its system of prevention to the specificity of threats, and
thus better protect employees against harmful impact of the psycho-social
factors.
In recent years prominent companies have migrated call centre services to
India provoking much-publicized fears for the future of UK employment. The
study of Taylor and Bain (2005) challenges the widely-held assumption that offshoring voice services is a seamless undertaking, principally through an
investigation of the Indian call centre labor process. This enquiry is informed
initially by an analysis of the political-economic factors driving off-shoring and
shaping the forms of work organization to have emerged in India. A critical
review of literature on call centre work organization provided a conceptual

147

framework, through which Indian developments are analyzed. Data comes from
fieldwork conducted in India and a complete audit of the Scottish industry,
through which UK trends can be evaluated. The authors concluded that the
Indian industry reproduces in exaggerated and culturally-distinctive forms, a
labor process that has proved problematical for employers and employees alike in
the UK and elsewhere.
The aim of the study of Li et al (2005) was to test the reliability and
validity of the Chinese version of the 23-item effort-reward imbalance (ERI)
questionnaire and to analyze its association with job dissatisfaction in a sample
of Chinese healthcare workers. A self-reported survey was conducted, in
university hospitals of China, among 192 male and 608 female healthcare
workers. Appropriate internal consistencies of the three scales: effort, reward,
and over commitment, were obtained. Exploratory factor analysis replicated the
theoretically assumed structure of the ERI construct in men and women.
Evidence of criterion validity was obtained from cross-correlations of the scales
and from their correlations with gender, education and job dissatisfaction.
Finally, all three scales were associated with an elevated odds ratio of job
dissatisfaction, and the effect was strongest for the ERI ratio as predicted by
theory. Based on the results of this study the Chinese version of the ERI
questionnaire is considered a reliable and valid instrument for measuring psychosocial stress at work. It is applicable to Chinese working populations and, in
particular, to the healthcare sector.
The work of Munozdebustillollorente et al., (2005), examined the relation
between the characteristics of the job performed and the level of subjective
satisfaction of workers. In other words: whether job satisfaction reflects the
characteristics of jobs, and therefore, can be used as an indicator of job quality.
Two different approaches were followed. First, using the International Social
Survey Program of 1997, authors explored whether differences between
countries in job satisfaction can be explained by variables usually considered to

148

be related to job quality, such as working hours, wages, etc. Second, they studied
the relationship between certain objective measures of job quality and job
satisfaction in a given country, using Spain as a case study. In both cases the
results did not support the use of job satisfaction as a measure of job quality.
Quality-of-work-life includes broad aspects of the work environment that
affect employee learning and health. Canadian Health Care Organizations
(HCOs) are being encouraged to monitor QWL, expanding existing
occupational health surveillance capacities. In this context, Cole et al (2005)
conducted a study to investigate into the understanding, collection, diffusion and
use of QWL indicators in Canadian HCOs. Towards this purpose, they obtained
cooperation from six diverse public HCOs managing forty one (41) sites. They
reviewed documentation relevant to QWL and conducted fifty eight (58) focus
groups/team interviews with strategic, support and programme teams. Group
interviews were taped, reviewed and analyzed for themes using qualitative data
techniques. Indicators were classified by purpose and HCO level. Results
indicated that QWL indicators, as such, were relatively new to most HCOs, yet
the data managed by human resource and occupational health and safety support
teams were highly relevant to monitoring of employee wellbeing (119 of 209
mentioned indicators), e.g. sickness absence. Monitoring of working conditions
(62/209) was also important, e.g. indicators of employee workload. Uncommon
were indicators of bio-mechanical and psycho-social hazards at work, despite
their being important causes of morbidity among HCO employees. Although
imprecision in the definition of QWL indicators limited links with other HCO
performance measures and inadequate HCO resources for implementation were
common, most HCOs cited ways in which QWL indicators had influenced
planning and evaluation of prevention efforts. The suggestions included increase
in targeted HCO resources, inclusion of other QWL indicators and greater
integration with HCO management systems which could improve HCO decisionmakers access to information relevant to employee health.

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Soft-skills training pertain to social and customer handling skills in


addition to cultural sensitization of Indians to other cultures. Soft-skills are very
important for the success of BPO firms, yet there is not much in the literature that
addresses soft-skills training of BPO workers. The research carried out by
Subramanian (2005) attempted to bridge the gap. He studied about the soft-skills
training at a large business process outsourcing firm located in Bangalore, India.
It adopted a qualitative approach using a combination of methods such as the
long interview, secondary sources research and actual observation. The results
are used to develop a framework for future studies in this area. The results
showed that the BPO industry is likely to be a long-term phenomenon in an
increasingly global world. Countries such as India are currently emerging as
major BPO players. It is a young industry that provides the vast potential of
globalization to millions of educated young people in emerging economies. It is
also an industry that has the potential to displace several million white-collar
workers in the US, UK and other developed countries. This may cause political
actions from those countries or private actions such as the verbal abuse issues
from disgruntled elements. Because of the tedium and the long and abnormal
hours of work involved in BPO firms in India, health problems for BPO workers
are likely to continue and be a source of concern to the management and the
government. This may continue to result in job attrition, according to the authors.
Naveen (2005) attempted to identify the physical and psychological health
problems faced by the call handlers and also to know the existing working
practices in these call centers. An eight part questionnaire covering topics like
general

information,

working

conditions,

workstation,

health

aspects,

psychological factors, consumed items was used in the three call centers situated
in Bangalore, which had agreed to be a part of the study. In all, 176 call handlers
participated in the study. Majority of the respondents were in the age group of
21-30 yrs and were males. 119 (67.6%) had less than a year of experience
working in the call centers. 94 (54.3%) respondents had rotation shift duties and

150

144 (81.8%) worked on an average for 8-12 hrs per day. 157 (89.2%) of the
respondents knew to adjust their work station. Hot-desking was not a popular
practice among the call handlers and 127 (72.2) of them had permanent
workstation. The respondents either got three or four breaks per shift of 30 to 45
minutes, which also included a meal break. Voice is an important tool of the call
handlers and more than 50% of the respondents had some problems related to
their vocal health. The call handlers use display screen equipment for 12 to 18
hours per day to aid them in their activities in the call centre and the most
common complaint was headache. More than 50% of the call handlers had no
personal headsets and 22 (12.5%) complained of problems related to their ears.
126 (71.6) of the respondents had musculoskeletal pain and the commonest
region being the neck and the back. 81 (47.36%) had their body mass index
(BMI) in the normal range. The symptoms related to gastrointestinal symptoms
include, gastritis 29 (16.5%) and change in the quality and quantity of food
noticed by more than 50% of the respondents. Respiratory symptoms like
common cold, dry cough or productive cough was less among the call handlers.
Call centre work had interfered with the call handlers interaction with family
members and social life. Unmarried respondents were found to be significantly
more under stress when compared to married respondents. There was significant
association between work experience and short temperedness, muscular- skeletal
disorders and sleep disturbance.
Studies conducted in 2004
Research carried out by Evandrou (2004) on family, work and quality of
life, explored changes in economic and social roles across four birth cohorts
passing through mid-life in Britain. The relationship between multiple role
responsibilities and a range of indicators of quality of life, including material
resources, health and engagement in social activities were investigated. The
research was based upon secondary analysis of four different surveys: the 2000
British Household Panel Study, the 199495 Family and Working Lives Survey,

151

the 1985, 1990, 1995, and 2000 General Household Surveys, and the
Longitudinal Retirement Survey (1988/89 and 1994). A particularly interesting
finding was that being caught in the middle, in terms of having simultaneous
care-giving responsibilities to dependent children and frail parents whilst in paid
work, has been atypical. Only one-in-nine British women, and one-in-ten British
men, aged 45-49 years (born in 1941-45) occupy all three roles concurrently, but
multiple role occupancy is increasing across cohorts, particularly the
combination of caring and paid work. Role occupancy significantly affects the
accumulation of pension entitlements (particularly second-tier pensions), with the
effect that many women who have fulfilled the important social roles of career
and parent will face a low income in old age. Where adverse health outcomes
were found, parental role in mid-life was most frequently associated with such
poor health, suggesting that continued parental demands in mid-life may have
negative health consequences.
The study of Lee et al., (2004) provides a meta-analysis on the
relationships between organizational tenure and three broad classes of job
behaviors: core-task behaviors, citizenship behaviors, and counterproductive
behaviors. Across 350 empirical studies with a cumulative sample size of
249,841, the authors found that longer tenured employees generally have greater
in-role performance and citizenship performance. It is interesting that
organizational tenure was also positively related to some counterproductive
behavior (e.g., aggressive behavior and non sickness absence). Most of these
relationships remain statistically significant even after controlling for the effects
of chronological age. The authors also observed that the tenure performance
relationship was stronger for younger workers, for women, for non-Caucasians,
and for college-educated workers. Finally, the authors found evidence of a
curvilinear relationship between organizational tenure and job performance.
Although the relationship of organizational tenure with job performance was

152

positive in general, the strength of the association decreases as organizational


tenure increases.
The empirical investigation made by Zin (2004) was aimed to determine
the pattern of the relationships between the perceived presence of quality of work
life (QWL) factors and organizational commitment using samples from
professional engineers in Malaysia. Engineers in private sector were selected to
participate in this study. A total of 250 sets of questionnaires were sent to the
selected organizations, and 152 useable questionnaires representing a response
rate of 60.8% were used for statistical analysis. A QWL measure consisting of
seven factors: growth and development, participation, physical environment,
supervision, pay and benefit, social relevance, and workplace integration was
developed based on Walton's (1975) conception. The three-component model
and measure of organizational commitment developed by Allen

and Meyer

(1990) was adopted in this study. Results of regression analysis indicated that
only two QWL factors, growth and development and pay and benefit, were
significant in explaining organizational commitment were also discussed.
America's work force has undergone a transformation over the past forty
years. The Census Bureau reported that in 1997 only 17% of all families
conformed to the 1950s model of a wage-earning dad, a stay-at-home mom, and
one or more children. Since the late 1950s, growing attention has focused on
families in which both partners work; these relationships are called dual-earner
marriages. Societal changes such as the number of women entering the
workforce and the economic need for two incomes to support a family have
impacted the American labor force. Married coupled families in which husband
and wife both work accounted for 53.2% of the workforce in 2000. These
workers face problems in balancing work responsibilities with home
commitment. Literature supports that work-life conflict poses problems to both
employees and business. Organizations look to their employees for productivity
and efficiency, which is compromised by work-life conflict in the form of

153

absenteeism, decreased employee satisfaction, and poor job performance.


Employees look to their employers for personnel practices to help alleviate the
stress they experience in balancing home and work responsibilities. Fourteen
organizations in northern-lower Michigan participated in the study conducted by
Littlefield (2004) with employees representative of healthcare, education,
banking, insurance, tourism, and the manufacturing industries. A Likert-type
scale was used to assess the perception of 278 members of dual-career families
on how helpful eighteen personnel practices were in alleviating work-life
conflict. The rankings of the personnel practices were examined and implications
to business and industry were made.
Studies conducted in 2003
Women are largely under-represented in the Information Technology (IT)
workforce. The research of Carayon, Marchand and Schwarz (2003) examined
the factors related to the work environment that may contribute to the high
turnover of women in the IT workforce. There is substantial research providing
support for the relationship between job and organizational factors, on one hand,
and quality of working life (QWL) (e.g. low job satisfaction and high job strain),
on the other hand. They conducted secondary data analysis of questionnaire
survey collected from a sample of 1,278 employees of a single organization.
Authors examined the impact of gender and job type (i.e. IT job versus non-IT
job) on various indicators of quality of working life, as well as on the relationship
between job and organizational factors (i.e. feedback, autonomy, skill variety,
task significance, task identity and work pressure) and QWL. Results showed
that IT workers reported higher job satisfaction and lower job strain than non-IT
workers. Gender had no impact on QWL. Feedback and autonomy were
consistently related to job satisfaction, and work pressure was consistently
related to job strain, irrespective of gender and type of job. On the other hand,
women IT workers job satisfaction was affected by work pressure, and women
IT workers job strain was affected by task significance. Women IT workers job

154

strain was not affected by autonomy, whereas job strain experienced by non-IT
workers was affected by autonomy.
A Finnish participatory action research (PAR) case study was conducted
by Kalliola (2003) among home care workers for the elderly. The staff planned
and carried out an organizational change from hierarchy to semi-autonomous
group organization. The PAR process, following the ideas of socio-technical
thinking, provided the staff with space for learning by doing and for creating
organization cohesiveness. The case was part of a programmatic development of
municipal services, aimed at improving simultaneously the productivity of these
services and the quality of working life of the agency staff, thus addressing
current problems of the public sector from the viewpoint of organizational
assessment. According to the quality of working life performance measurements
used, the case was successful. The study provides evidence for the usefulness of
team-based service delivery and shows some significant aspects of the PAR
process from the viewpoints of the participants and the researcher.
The investigation carried out by Lund (2003) examined the relationship of
information adequacy to job satisfaction and organizational culture in a
healthcare organization with both office and field personnel. Information
adequacy was assessed in four areas: personal performance, organizational
policies, organizational performance, and organizational objectives. Comparisons
of field and office personnel indicated that they did not differ on information
adequacy or job satisfaction; they did, however, differ on several dimensions of
organizational culture. Also, the relationship of information inadequacy to job
satisfaction and organizational culture differed for employees depending on
whether they worked primarily in the field or primarily in the office. Implications
of the findings were drawn for organizations with a dispersed-network structure.
Call centers have been one of the few booming branches in recent years.
The main task of call centre operators is to interact with customers by telephone,

155

usually supported by computer systems. It has been argued that call centre work
is a modern form of Taylorism, because it is characterized by routine tasks and
low level of control for the employees. Moreover, it has been suggested that there
is a high level of stress at work, both with regard to the work tasks and to the
interactions with customers. In the study conducted by Zapf et al (2003) a
sample of 375 call centre employees from eight different call centers was
compared with a sample of noncall centre workers (N=405) in terms of job
characteristics, job stressors, and emotional labor (emotion work). The results
showed that call centre workers had worse job characteristics, but were better off
with regard to most job stressors compared to representative comparison groups
of no-service workers, service workers, and workers in human services
respectively. Moreover, compared to the other groups, customer service
representatives (CSRs) had to express less negative emotions, but were most
frequently exposed to states of emotional dissonance. A comparison of the
working conditions of the eight call centers revealed that in most call centers the
working conditions could be substantially improved. In addition, various call
centre parameters such as inbound vs. outbound, or in-house vs. external service
centers were examined. The strongest effects were found for the percentage of
time spent on the telephone. With some exceptions, the results support the view
that the majority of call centers have been established to organize mass service
for customers that the work in the call centers is characterized by routine work
and low task control, and that call centre employees are required to suggest a
friendly smile when they are on the phone.
In the 1990s workers in Australia were increasingly subjected to negative
work pressures. Irregular work patterns, work intensification, and the
transformation of the notion of career, often in the name of flexibility, were
increasingly common. This period was also characterized by scant regard for the
quality of working life of young people in entry-level employment, which is
often portrayed as a transition stage prior to their admission into the full-time

156

core workforce. The study by Roan and Diamond (2003) explored the
experiences of twenty-two young people at the beginning of their careers, in the
hospitality and retail industries, with reference to three quality of working life
(QWL) elements: hours flexibility, work-life balance and career potential.
Qualitative evidence revealed a variety of experiences but, on balance, suggested
a negative quality of working life and limited commitment to their current
industry. In conclusion, the research suggested that these industries must pay
more attention to QWL issues in order to attract and retain quality staff.
The rapid rise of the service sector, and in particular the call centre
industry has made the study of emotional labor increasingly important within the
area of occupational stress research. Lewig and Dollard (2003) examined the
emotional demands (emotional labor) of call centre work and their relationship to
the job satisfaction and emotional exhaustion in a sample of South Australian call
centre workers (N=98) within the theoretical frameworks of the job demand
control model, the effort reward imbalance model, and the job demands
resources model. Qualitatively the research confirmed the central role of
emotional labor variables in the experience of emotional exhaustion and
satisfaction at work. Specifically the research confirmed the pre-eminence of
emotional dissonance compared to a range of emotional demand variables in its
potency to account for variance in emotional exhaustion and job satisfaction.
Specifically, emotional dissonance mediated the effect of emotional labor
(positive emotions) on emotional exhaustion. Furthermore emotional dissonance
was found to be equal in its capacity to explain variance in the outcomes
compared to the most frequently researched demand measure in the work stress
literature (psycho-social demands). Finally, emotional dissonance was found to
exacerbate the level of emotional exhaustion at high levels of psycho-social
demands, indicating jobs combining high levels of both kinds of demands, are
much more risky.

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Studies conducted in 2002


Cinamon, Rich and Yisrael (2002) explored between-and within-gender
differences in the importance of life roles and their implications for work family
conflict. In the earlier research (Cinamon & Rich, 2002), they found three
profiles of workers who differ in attributions of importance to work and family
roles: persons who assigned high importance to both the work role and the family
role (Dual profile); participants who ascribed high importance to the work role
and low importance to the family role (work profile); and participants who
attributed high importance to the family role and low importance to the work role
(family profile). Authors used these profiles to clarify the relationship between
gender and work-family conflict. Participants were 126 married men and 87
married women who were employed in computer or law firms. Significant
between- and within-gender differences were found in the distribution of
participants to profiles. Men were equally distributed throughout the profiles,
whereas women were underrepresented in the Work category. More women than
men fit the Family profile, and more men than women fit the Work profile. No
gender differences were found for the Dual profile. Women reported higher
parenting and work values than men did. Between-gender differences in workfamily conflict were apparent, as were within-gender differences across profiles.
Results demonstrated the value of examining both between- and within-gender
variation in studies of gender and work-family conflict.
Turnover rates for hospital nurses have been increasing in recent years,
which is partially a result of increasing pressure on nurses from higher
productivity expectations in a managed care environment. Improving nurse
retention is a difficult challenge to managers since the bureaucratic cultural norm
of hospitals, with its hierarchical structures, rules, and regulations, and heavy
emphasis on measurement of outcomes and costs, may not be the culture most
conducive to enhancing nurses' job satisfaction and commitment. Accordingly,
the study conducted by Gifford et al., (2002) investigated the relationships

158

between unit organizational culture and several important job-related variables


for nurse retention in the labor and delivery units of seven hospitals. Data
analysis showed that unit organizational culture does affect nurses' quality of
work life factors and that human relation cultural values are positively related to
organizational

commitment,

job

involvement,

empowerment,

and

job

satisfaction, and negatively related to intent to turnover. These findings suggest


that although increasing recruitment of nurses and improved compensation and
benefits strategies may offset hospital nurse shortages in the short term,
improving quality of work life may be a more practical and long-term approach
to improving hospital nurse retention.
Stress and burnout for health care professionals have received increasing
attention in the literature. Significant administrative, societal and political
changes have impacted on the role of workers and the responsibilities they are
expected to assume. Most writers suggest that social work is a highly stressful
occupation, with stress deriving in particular from role conflict between client
advocacies and meeting agency needs. The article written by Lloyd and
Chenoweth (2002) reviewed the social work literature with two questions in
mind: Are social workers subject to greater stress than other health professionals?
What factors contribute to stress and burnout among social workers? Authors
found that most of the literature was either anecdotal or compared social worker
stress with general population norms rather than with stress levels of workers in
comparable professions. Such empirical research as is available suggests that
social workers may experience higher levels of stress and resulting burnout than
comparable occupational groups. Factors identified as contributing to stress and
burnout included the nature of social work practice, especially tension between
philosophy and work demands and the organization of the work environment.
There was some evidence that supervision and team support are protective
factors.

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Quality of work has been frequently defined in terms of work conditions.


Work conditions, described in theoretical models (as the Job Demand-ControlSocial support model, the Effort-Reward Imbalance model and the Vitamin
model) are presented as important predictors of wellness/health outcomes.
Although empirical findings have clearly illustrated the predictive power of these
models, limitations and inconsistent results support the exploration of additional,
complementary perspectives. In this context, Pomaki (2002) suggested a personcentered, self-regulatory approach to quality of work life. In his article
predicting quality of work life: from work conditions to self-regulations,
personal goals are presented as the core predictor of wellness and health. Within
Motivational Systems theory (MST), personal goals help employees direct and
organize behavior. The strategies and processes involved in goal pursuit are
predictive of goal attainment. The opportunity to attain goals or the frustration of
ones goals is the key to health and wellness. Although there are several
theoretical models and theories describing the cognitive and emotional processes
involved in the pursuit of personal goals, empirical research concentrating on
such phenomena at the workplace has been scarce. The authors conducted an
overview of studies investigating the relationship between personal goals and
wellness/health outcomes among employees which is discussed in this article.
Although most of the studies stem from different theoretical models, they
focused on goal processes that are common with MST processes in an attempt to
provide constructive and systematic conclusions. Goal processes were
significantly predictive of wellness indicators and work-related outcomes in
cross-sectional as well as longitudinal studies.
A descriptive study was conducted over duration of two years by Labiris
et al.,(2002), assessing the impact of the quality gaps, and the quality of work life
(QWL) index on the performance of a state hospital department. The medical and
paramedical staff of the Patissia Eye Clinic in Athens, Greece was enrolled in the
study and the QWL index for each health-care provider was estimated. Providers

160

with higher educational backgrounds or higher ratings in the hospital hierarchy


presented with better scores in the QWL index. A random sample of 400
glaucoma

patients

was

interviewed

and

responded

to

predetermined

questionnaires. Quality gaps in the overall diagnostic and therapeutic approach


were detected mainly in the responsiveness and empathy quality dimensions.
The performance of the department was evaluated by assessing the percentage of
patients with satisfactory target (intraocular pressure or IOP) as an objective
index of efficiency, the percentage of patients with satisfactory alertness as an
objective index of quality, and the percentage of patients with satisfactory
compliance as a prognostic index for long-term efficacy. The QWL index and the
quality gaps had a direct impact on the alertness and the compliance of the
patients, reducing the overall performance of the department.
The study carried out by Aminah (2002) supports that inter-role family
conflict occurs when the cumulative demands of multiple roles at home and at
work become too great to manage comfortably.
Studies conducted in 2001
The study conducted by Goodman et al., (2001) used the competing
values framework as a tool to investigate the relationships between
organizational culture and several important job related variables. The findings
indicated that group cultural values are positively related to organizational
commitment, job involvement, empowerment and job satisfaction, and negatively
related to intent to turnover. While hierarchical cultural values were negatively
related to organizational commitment, job involvement, empowerment and job
satisfaction, it was positively related to intent to turnover.
Maslach and Leiter (2001) in their article on job burnout opined that
burnout is a prolonged response to chronic emotional and interpersonal stressors
on the job, and is defined by the three dimensions of exhaustion, cynicism, and
inefficacy. According to the authors, the past 25 years of research has established

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the complexity of the construct, and places the individual stress experience
within a larger organizational context of people's relation to their work. Recently,
the work on burnout has expanded internationally and has led to new conceptual
models. The focus is on engagement, the positive antithesis of burnout and
promises to yield new perspectives on interventions to alleviate burnout. The
social focus of burnout, the solid research basis concerning the syndrome, and its
specific ties to the work domain make a distinct and valuable contribution to
people's health and well-being, they believe.
A new measure of QWL was developed, based on need satisfaction and
spillover theories by Sirgy et al., (2001). The measure was designed to capture
the extent to which the work environment, job requirements, supervisory
behavior, and ancillary programs in an organization are perceived to meet the
needs of an employee. The authors identified seven major needs, each having
several dimensions. These are: (a) health and safety needs (protection from ill
health and injury at work and outside of work, and enhancement of good health),
(b) economic and family needs (pay, job security, and other family needs), (c)
social needs (collegiality at work and leisure time off work), (d) esteem needs
(recognition and appreciation of work within the organization and outside the
organization), (e) actualization needs (realization of ones potential within the
organization and as a professional), (f) knowledge needs (learning to enhance job
and professional skills), and (g) aesthetic needs (creativity at work as well as
personal creativity and general aesthetics). The measures convergent and
discriminant validities were tested and the data provided support to the construct
validity of the QWL measure. Furthermore, the measures nomological
(predictive) validity was tested through hypotheses deduced from spillover
theory. Three studies were conducted; two studies using university employees
and the third using accounting firms. The results from the pooled sample
provided support for the hypotheses and thus lent some support to the
nomological validity to the new measure.

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Tausig (2001) examined the possibility that alternate work schedules


affect perceived work-life imbalance in their study unbinding time: alternate
work schedules and work life balance.

The results showed that alternate

schedules per se do not unbind time. However, perceived control of work


schedules increases work-life balance net of family and work characteristics. The
most consistent family characteristic predicting imbalance is being a parent. The
most consistent work characteristic predicting imbalance is hours worked.
Once there is control for hours worked, women and part-timers are shown to
perceive more imbalances. Younger and better educated persons also perceive
more work-life imbalance. However, they also report higher levels of schedule
control and since schedule control improves work-life balance, it may be more
important for unbinding time than schedule alternatives.
Monis and Sreedhara (2001) carried out an empirical study of five Indian
and five foreign MNC BPO firms operating in India, ranked among the top 100
by the International Association of Outsourcing Professionals (IAOP) for the
year 2009. The data was collected using both qualitative and quantitative
methods from 243 employees of Indian MNCs and 163 employees of foreign
MNCs who constituted one per cent of the population under study. The study
found

that, on an average, the level of satisfaction towards the career

development practices is at 69.71 per cent and 69.82 per cent among the
respondents of Indian and foreign MNC BPO firms respectively, both of which
constitute satisfied on the scale. Regression analysis, using a significance level
of 5 per cent, shows that three of the variables, namely, the variables of I have a
clearly established career path (p=.001), Viewing BPO sector as a long-term
career option (p=.000) and Having a dynamic career path is a must in order to
retain the outstanding and highly-performing employees (p=.018) are
significantly influencing the satisfaction of the respondents of Indian MNCs and
two of the variables, namely, the variables of I have a clearly established career
path (p=.000) and Having a dynamic career path is a must in order to retain the

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outstanding and highly-performing employees (p=.042) are significantly


influencing the satisfaction of the respondents of foreign MNCs towards the
career development practices and all the other variables have emerged as the
insignificant variables. Interestingly, all the significant variables are positively
associated with the satisfaction of the respondents and all the variables used in
the present study collectively account for 38.9 per cent (R square = .389) and
41.5 per cent (R square = .415) of the satisfaction of the respondents of Indian
and foreign MNC BPOs respectively towards the career development practices.
Studies conducted in 2000
A meta-analysis has confirmed that conflict between work and non-work
life is associated with impaired psychological well-being and other negative
outcomes (Allen et al., 2000). Work family conflict is a form of inter-role
conflict in which the general demand of time devoted to the job interferes with
the involvement of family related responsibilities. They emphasized that
problems associated with family responsibilities are additional sources that may
diminish QWL among IT professionals. They additionally assert that when an
employee has higher work responsibility there will be more spillover of negative
work outcomes on family life. The demands of managing higher responsibility at
work and home are also a potential source of stress because it allows a spillover
to family life thus creating an imbalance working environment.
Burnout is most often described as a concept with three separate
dimensions: emotional exhaustion, depersonalization (lack of empathy), and
reduced accomplishments at work. Falkum (2000) wanted to study the
descriptive validity of the concept, which may be measured by the Maslach
Burnout Inventory. The Maslach Burnout Inventory was mailed to 1,476
members of the Norwegian Medical Association. The response rate was 73%.
The dimensional structure of the instrument was examined by principal
component analysis, and the identified factors correlated with validated measures

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of job satisfaction and depression. The dichotomized factors were combined in


eight different ways, and the specificity of the resulting types was studied. The
three original dimensions were reproduced, and the internal consistency of the
factors was good (Cronbach's alpha ranging from 0.91 to 0.69). There were high
correlations between emotional exhaustion and both job satisfaction (r = -0.54)
and depression (r = 0.72). Emotional exhaustion seemed to be the least specific
of the burnout dimensions. For the purpose of reasonable descriptive validity, the
burnout notion should be based on both emotional exhaustion and
depersonalization. With the applied dichotomization thresholds, this implies that
3% of Norwegian physicians are burned out.
Job satisfaction at the reference desk is an important consideration. It not
only affects quality of life and the overall level of life satisfaction experienced by
the reference staff; it also affects reference work. Satisfied employees maintain
attitudes and engage in activities conducive to reference service effectiveness.
Life satisfaction and job satisfaction are related in a reciprocal manner, with life
satisfaction having the stronger effect.
The study on the effects of life satisfaction and job satisfaction of
reference librarians and their work by Landry (2000) found a moderate positive
relationship between life satisfaction and job satisfaction. A moderate negative
relationship was found between life satisfaction and the desire to find a
comparable job in another library.
Using data from the National Study of the Changing Workforce-1992, on
a sub-sample of workers in dual-earner families, Moen et al., (2000) examined
the strategies they used to manage work/life pressures, as well as how these
strategies, along with workers' life stage and work conditions, predict multiple
measures of psychological life quality (low work/family conflict, stress, and
overload, along with high coping/mastery). The authors found that strategies and
work conditions are gendered, with workers in dual-earner couples most apt to be

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in neo-traditional arrangements (husbands in professional and/or long-hour jobs


and wives working fewer hours, often in non-professional occupations). Life
quality is gendered as well, with women in dual-earner arrangements reporting
more stress and overload, as well as lower levels of coping/mastery than men.
However, the factors associated with life quality are similar across gender, with
conditions at work serving as key predictors of life quality indicators for both
men and women. Specifically, having a demanding job and job insecurity are
associated with low life quality, while having a supportive supervisor is
positively linked to life quality outcomes. Work hours and work-hour preferences
matter as well. Men and women in couples where both spouses work regular (3945) full-time hours, tend to score high on indicators of life quality, while those
working long hours and those preferring to work less, are less likely to do so.
Studies conducted in 1999
Carayon and Smith (1999) presented a macro-ergonomic model of work
design that is applied and tested to examine Total Quality Management (TQM) in
the public sector. According to the model, TQM can influence different aspects
of work design and quality of working life (QWL). Questionnaire data collected
in two public sector organizations in the USA showed that TQM can have both
positive and negative impact on work design and QWL. The main positive
impact of TQM was found on job content, job control and participation, and
social relationships. The main negative impact of TQM was on workload,
uncertainty, and clarity of job duties. The impact of TQM on QWL was mixed.
The results showed that the impact of TQM on work design and QWL varied
very much across the six participating departments, as well as within the
departments.
The aim of the study conducted by Slakoper (1999) was to compare the
quality of life of shift workers and non-shift workers. Satisfaction with various
aspects of life and the overall satisfaction were examined by means of the

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Quality of Life Scale (QLC). A total number of 107 chemical industry workers
participated in the study, of whom 56 worked in shifts and 51 worked in regular
hours. The results revealed that the average satisfaction with the present job and
financial status was lower in shift workers than in the non-shift workers (P <
0.05). The differences in the two predictors of life quality did not affect the
overall satisfaction with life in either group.
Studies conducted in 1998
The idea that R&D professionals typically spend a considerable amount of
their time working as members of teams makes sense. After all, plenty of
research indicates that the use of cross-functional teams improves the
effectiveness of product development efforts. However, the increasing use of
cross-functional teams raises an important question for researchers and R&D
practitioners: does the use of cross-functional teams improve the quality of work
life for Cordero? Di Tomaso (1998) addressed this question in study of 1,714
R&D professionals working on projects. They suggested that being a member of
a cross-functional team may be more demanding than working as a member of a
functional project group. On the other hand, they expect that working on a crossfunctional project team may be more rewarding than working in a functional
project group. Their study tested these hypotheses by examining the relationships
between measures of the extent to which respondents work on cross-functional
teams and five measures each of the participants' job demands and positive job
outcomes. The study identifies positive relationships between working on crossfunctional teams and the five positive job outcomes standard: job growth, job
security and membership in successful teams, earning money and job
satisfaction. The study found less consistent and weaker relationships between
working on cross-functional teams and the five job demands studied.
Specifically, the study identified positive relationships between working on
cross-functional teams and the following job demands: effort, job involvement,
and considering a lot of difference of opinion. The results of this study did not

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find a conclusive relationship between cross-functional team membership and


time pressure. And contrary to expectations, the study found a negative
relationship between working on cross-functional teams and job stress.
Comparing the responses of participants who work on project teams with those
who do not, the results of the study indicate that respondents who work on
project teams face greater job demands than positive job outcomes. However,
working on cross-functional teams seems to increase positive job outcomes more
than job demands. In other words, working on cross-functional teams appears to
increase the quality of work life for the technical professionals in this study.
Burke (1998) proposed three hypotheses to explain the work-family
relationship. The first is spillover, where the events of one environment affect
the other; the second is compensation, where the individuals attempt to
compensate in one environment for what is lacking in the other and the third is
where the environments can be described as independent. Accordingly, IT
based employers that have been slow to respond to the continuing pressures have
contributed to a growing incidence of work-life conflict among their employees.
The spillovers between work and personal life have serious implications on
employees QWL. It has also been argued that the conflict related to work and
personal demands can lead to negative health outcomes for employees, may
decrease organizational commitment, job satisfaction and increase burnout,
which will eventually lead to poor QWL.
The article stress at work by Richards (1998) starts by describing the
role of stress in modern work life which is subject to profound changes. It
explains why unambiguous terms and the application of theoretical concepts are
needed to advance scientific knowledge in this field. Stressor is defined as an
environmental demand or threats those taxes or exceeds a person's ability to meet
the challenge. Strain is the person's response to an unmet stressor in
psychological (especially emotional) and physiological terms. Coping refers to
efforts mobilized to reverse the threat or to meet the demands. Stressful

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experience delineates that part of strain reactions that reaches the awareness of
the involved person. Next, three prominent theoretical concepts are introduced
termed

person-environment

fit,

demand-control,

and

effort-reward

imbalance. Person-environment fit describes stressful experience, first, as


result of a misfit between supplies at work and needs of the working person,
second, as result of a misfit between demands and abilities. The demand-control
concept claims that strain is contingent on the combined effects of high
demands and low control, especially low decision latitude, at work. The model of
effort-reward imbalance posits that lack of reciprocity between efforts spent
and rewards obtained at work (high effort and low reward) elicits strain. In this
approach, rewards include money, esteem, and career opportunities including job
security. Selected findings from epidemiologic investigations are summarized
that document adverse health effects of stress at work as defined by these
concepts. Finally, practical implications of these findings for the design of
preventive measures at work are briefly discussed, and future directions are
outlined, emphasizing the promise of combining the concepts mentioned, of
studying the work-non work interface, and of conducting theory-based
intervention studies.
The study carried out by Priebe et al., (1998) examined the attitudes
towards work, work incentives, and the impact of work on quality of life for
people with schizophrenia and investigated whether these findings differ among
western countries. The authors interviewed 24 randomly selected subjects with
schizophrenia and schizo-affective disorder (12 employed and 12 unemployed) at
each of three sites: Boulder, Colorado, United States; Berlin, Germany; and
Berne, Switzerland. No significant differences were found in the subjects'
attitudes toward work or subjective well-being, although Swiss patients had a
higher cost-of-living-adjusted income. Unemployed subjects reported a lower
subjective reservation (minimum financially worthwhile) wage than employed
subjects in Berlin and Berne, whereas the reverse was true in Boulder. When

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subjects from all sites were combined, employed patients displayed less
psychopathology and significant advantages in terms of objective and subjective
measures of income and well-being. They were also more likely to stress the
importance of work. The results suggest that work is associated with a markedly
better quality of life for people with schizophrenia, but the disability pension
programs in the United States might introduce work disincentives.
Studies conducted in 1997
The aim of the study carried out by Schoonwinkel and Klopper (1997)
was to describe guidelines for a personal and professional development
programme to facilitate the quality of work-life experienced by psychiatric
nurses in a hospital. An explorative and descriptive research design with a
qualitative research orientation was employed. The study was divided into three
phases. In phase one the needs, desires and expectations of psychiatric nursing in
a hospital nursing service were explored and described. In phase two the factors
in a nursing service which influence the quality work-life of nurses, were
explored and described. Consequently, the last phase of the study was conducted,
being inferred from data of phases one and two which lead to the conceptual
framework upon which the guidelines and programme are based. A personal and
professional development programme for psychiatric nurses to facilitate quality
of work-life experienced, consisting of three parts, was described to enclose
aspects of the psychiatric nurse's internal and external environments, as well as
patterns of interaction between the internal and external environments.
Organizations in Hong Kong were surveyed by Catherine and Chiu (1997)
to gauge how women-friendly they were and how their human resource managers
viewed the effect of women-friendly HRM policies and practices on employees'
quality of work life. It was found that only about half of the policies mentioned
in the questionnaire were practiced by less than 10 per cent of the organizations.
Principal component analysis conducted showed that organizational women-

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friendliness was multi-facet in nature. Using these facets women friendly


dimensions (WFDs) - as criteria and controlling for size, the study found that
firms with American and European origins were more women-friendly than
Hong Kong firms. Furthermore, when American companies were compared to
Hong Kong companies, it was on the WFD of career development that the former
were significantly higher than the latter. In contrast, when comparing European
organizations with Hong Kong organizations, it was the WFD of flexibility on
which the two differed most markedly.
Studies conducted in 1996
Air Force radar controllers represent an excellent example of night shift
workers, as they are obliged to demonstrate perfect alertness during working
hours. Puca et al., (1996) set out: a) to assess the quality of life in these shift
workers; b) to identify those with shift work syndrome and c) to evaluate the
possible effects of triazolam both on their quality of life and sleep. The results
reveal an impairment of the quality of life in shift workers, independently of the
presence of a circadian rhythm sleep disorder. Quality of life was more severely
impaired in subjects with circadian rhythm sleep disorder. Hypnotic therapy
brought about an improvement both in the sleep disorder and in the quality of life
of subjects affected by shift work syndrome. Selective alertness tests failed to
demonstrate any "sedative carry-over" in the treated patients.
Studies conducted in 1994
What are the positive and negative work experiences reported by teachers,
and how do these contribute to their quality of work life? The study of Hart
(1994) reported structural equation analyses conducted on questionnaire data
obtained during three studies from 1539 Australian primary and secondary
school teachers. Drawing on perceived quality of life research it was
hypothesized that psychological distress and morale would be separate outcomes
of positive and negative work experiences. Results confirmed that psychological

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distress and morale operate on different dimensions. Three structural equation


models showed that positive experiences were stronger determinants of morale
than psychological distress, whereas negative experiences were stronger
determinants of psychological distress than morale. Psychological distress and
morale contributed equally to teachers' overall quality of work life. When
examined simultaneously it was found that positive experiences contributed only
to morale whilst negative experiences contributed only to psychological distress.
These findings challenge conventional wisdom and suggest that it is not possible
to enhance morale by reducing negative experiences, nor is it possible to reduce
psychological distress by focusing on positive experiences.
The study of Igbaria (1994) assessed the job involvement of 464
professionals and managers in the information systems (IS) field and investigated
the role of involvement in influencing the quality of work life. Results showed
significant variation in the level of job involvement displayed by IS employees
and differential patterns of relationships among the study variables for IS
personnel with low, moderate, and high levels of job involvement. The findings
indicated that involvement serves as a complex moderator role in the pattern of
relationships of work experiences, and of job characteristics with career
expectations and career outcomes. It has both linear and non-linear relationships
with several of the study variables. While in some cases, high levels of job
involvement tend to enhance the beneficial effects of work experiences on the
quality of work life; in others such involvement tends to heighten the negative
effects of role stressors.
Home health care has undergone startling changes in the past decade and,
in the process, become a strategically important ingredient of health care
delivery. However, the question remains whether home health care organizations
can deliver the benefits anticipated for integrated care delivery systems. The
answer to this question depends to a great extent on whether home health care
organizations build vibrant, visionary leadership capable of transforming

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organizations and motivating staff to deliver high quality and low cost services.
The research work of Smith and Piland (1994) examined a case study of
transformational leadership as it relates to the quality of working life for nurses,
homemakers, and staff. The findings indicated that leader behavior is strongly
associated with homemakers', and to lesser extent staff members' job satisfaction,
job involvement, and propensity to remain with the organization. These job
attitudes have been shown to be related to higher job performance.
Studies conducted in 1992
From the additive models of overall quality of life, two hypotheses were
derived about the relationships among work-family conflict, work-leisure
conflict, job satisfaction, family satisfaction, leisure satisfaction and global life
satisfaction in the research carried out by Rice and Mc Farlin (1992). In
supporting these two hypotheses, path analyses of survey data from a national
probability sample of United States workers (n = 823) showed: (1) the direct
paths between work-non work conflict and global life satisfaction were nonsignificant; and (2) the indirect paths between work-non work conflict and global
life satisfaction, which are mediated by job satisfaction and non work
satisfaction, were all significant. Further analyses indicated that, in general, the
magnitude of these path coefficients was not significantly moderated by socio
demographic variables. Discussion considered the role of additive models as
conceptual frameworks for studies concerned with the effects of work
experiences on the overall quality of life.
The study carried out by Fields and Thacker (1992) examined changes in
union and organizational commitment after the implementation of a joint unionmanagement quality of work-life (QWL) program. The results indicated that
company commitment increased only when participants perceived the QWL
effort as successful, but union commitment increased irrespective of the
perception of QWL success. The purpose of the present investigation was to

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advance understanding of the influence of participation in a quality of work-life


(QWL) endeavour on both company and union commitment. Although there are
many definitions of QWL, there is agreement that in unionized organizations,
QWL refers to a cooperative effort on the part of union and management
representatives to involve employees in the day-to-day decision-making process
at work. Such union-management efforts can affect both the company- and
union-related attitudes of participants.
The study of Sheridan (1992) investigated the retention rates of 904
college graduates hired in six public accounting firms over a six-year period.
Organizational culture values varied significantly among the firms. The variation
in cultural values had a significant effect on the rates at which the newly hired
employees voluntarily terminated employment. The relationship between the
employees' job performance and their retention also varied significantly with
organizational culture values. The cultural effects were stronger than the
combined exogenous influences of the labor market and the new employees'
demographic characteristics. The cultural effects were estimated to have resulted
in over six million dollars' difference in human resource costs between firms with
different cultural values.
Studies conducted in 1990
Efraty and Sirgy (1990) conceptualized quality of work life (1990) in
terms of need satisfaction stemming from an interaction of workers' needs
(survival, social, ego, and self-actualization needs) and those organizational
resources relevant for meeting them. It was hypothesized that need satisfaction
(or QWL) is positively related to organizational identification, job satisfaction,
job involvement, job effort, and job performance; and negatively related to
personal alienation. A survey study was conducted by the authors based on a
sample of 219 service deliverers to the elderly in a large mid-western city. The
results were consistent with the hypotheses.

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The paper by Vieira (1990) refers to an introductory study about "Quality


of work life" (QWL), subject which requires a growing importance in certain
organizations. At first it is a discussion on the origin of this movement and its
conceptualization by some authors. Afterwards two approaches to QWL are
exposed-the classical and the situational. This is a classification used by the
authors themselves to emphasize the original, conventional concept of QWL and
to differentiate it from the second approach which is really situational and which
has a broader sense, adapting to reality and to the context of the organization.
The paper concludes with a reflection on the future courses of organizations, its
human resources and QWL.
The

study of

Golembiewski and Sun (1990) sought to determine

whether the high success rates observed in a large survey of QWL evaluative
studies (N=231) can be substatially explained in terms of the lack of rigor of
research methodology and design as the literature critical of QWL often
proposes. The study found statistically significanl support for a positive-findings
bias hypothesis, but rigor explained less than 7% of the variance in outcomes.
This implies only modest support for the position that attractive QWL results can
be substantially accounted for by a positive-findings bias.
Studies conducted in 1989
Kraut, Dumais and Koch (1989) found out the impact of computerized
record system on the work lives of customer service representatives in a large
utility company. Computerization of even a small component of a job can have
profound effects on job effectiveness and employment quality, but these effects
do not conform to simple models. Authors have shown that after service
representatives began using a computerized record system, their work lives
changed. The changes associated with computerization were as large as any other
natural source of variation that they could identify in this setting. Moreover, the
methods allowed the researchers to conclude with reasonable certainty that the

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changes they found were the result of technology, broadly conceived, and were
not the result of methodological artefacts, pre-existing differences between
groups, or extraneous, historical factors. Researchers concentrated on solving
methodological problems in establishing the causal impact of technology,
because until they can distinguish causal impact from methodological artefact,
more sophisticated questions about the generality of effects, mediation of effects,
and direction of causation cannot be addressed at all.
In theory, QWL programs entail a cooperative mode of labor-management
relations that should enhance organizational productivity and employee
satisfaction. In practice, however, municipal QWL programs have been unstable
and often restricted in scope to relatively unimportant decisions. This article by
Accordino (1989) explores why municipal QWL programs are started and
sustained, yet why they fail to become more vital parts of organizational decision
making.
Krim and Arthur (1989) in their article quality of work life in city hall:
towards an integration of political and organizational realities, written with the
intention of offering general lessons for public sector QWL activities, concluded
that managers, not unlike the public-sector manager featured earlier, have lent
critical support to the QWL program at vital junctures. It was not always clear
that these managers understood QWL's possibilities for either the city or its
employees, but they did respond to the positive reinforcement of "good press"
and the negative reinforcement of possible "bad press." The leader of the major
municipal union that refused to cooperate, while still reluctant about QWL
efforts in the city, has subsequently been more flexible in other labourmanagement initiatives within the state. The leader of the participating municipal
union has reaffirmed a personal commitment to the QWL program since the
management facilitator crisis and has subsequently come to lend much stronger
vocal support for the program's possibilities. These people, along with others

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influential in the city program, have experienced the role of the media and how
through it the quality of work life program can affect their own political agendas.
Studies conducted in 1986
The study carried out by Williamson and Alexander (1986) attempted to
test the "central concept" of QWL by examining the relationship between
negotiated QWL-related issues and organizational productivity and employee
absenteeism. QWL is operationalized in this research to include only those
labour contract clauses which address the control of one's own life in the work
environment. (Glacer, 1976; Makarov, 1982; Walton, 1974) This research is not
a direct test of the impact of a QWL program. Rather, the test is distal in nature,
examining whether or not the inclusion of negotiated contact clauses relating to
control of one's own life in the work environment produces increases in
productivity and/or decreases in absenteeism.
Studies conducted in 1985
Steinberg initiated with twenty employees a semi-autonomous production
group in one of their depots in 1983. During the ten ensuing years, this group
exemplified one of the most interesting experiences in Quebec relating to the
quality of life at work. Pelletier (1985) followed the evolution of this project
from its birth to its completion in October 1983. He highlighted the results
obtained for the company as well as those concerned with the social welfare of
the employees. He described the problems encountered, the successes obtained
and the traps to look for when setting up programs on the quality of life at work
or in any other model of work organization.
Rice et al., (1985) developed a preliminary conceptual model for
examining the effects of organizational work on the perceived quality of life
(PQL) which defines PQL as affective beliefs (hot cognitions) concerning the
status of one's life. The potential influences of work on PQL are considered in
terms of effects mediated by the perceived quality of work-life versus those
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mediated by the perceived quality of non-work life; person-changing versus


environment-changing effects; and first-party versus second-party effects.
Studies conducted in 1983
The paper by Moos (1983) describes the development of scales to assess
the perceived social-environmental quality of work and family settings. The use
of these scales in comparing and contrasting work and family settings and in
examining their role as contexts for adaptation and growth is illustrated. Some
tentative conclusions about social-environmental influences on individual and
family adaptation are drawn and practical applications for planning ecologically
oriented interventions are discussed.
The study by Katz, Kochan and Gobeille (1983) analyzed the relationship
among plant-level measures of industrial relations performance, economic
performance, and quality-of-working- life programs. The analysis employed
pooled time-series and cross section data from 18 plants within a division of
General Motors for the years 1970-79. The empirical results showed strong
associations between industrial relations and economic performance measures
and limited support for the hypothesis that quality-of-working-life efforts
improve both kinds of performance.
Studies conducted in 1982
Volvo is convinced that there are great possibilities to create more
effective job design solutions. Johnson (1982) carried out a study in Volvo on the
quality of work life and he suggested a new strategy on production technology
and works organization which was developed in the early 70s. Since then the
concept of flexible technology, team work and a spirit of collaboration has
diffused to all the different product groups. The base for this development must
be new technology, the capability and knowledge among the employees
combined with a managerial approach that mobilizes the potential of good
working ability. The changed directions both include moving toward
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craftsmanship in assembly operations as well as automation in manufacturing


whenever feasible.
Studies conducted in 1980
The study of Abdel-Halim (1980) examined the moderating effects of
employees higher order need strength (HONS) on the relationship between job
performance and job satisfaction. Data were collected from a sample of 123 nonsupervisory employees in a large retail-drug organization in the Midwest.
Moderated regression and subgroup analyses were performed on the data, and the
results provide support for the moderating role of HONS. Specifically, job
performance is positively related to intrinsic as well as extrinsic sources of job
satisfaction for strong HONS individuals while no such relation is found for
individuals with weak HONS
Studies conducted in 1978
While concern for the quality of working life (QWL) is by no means new
it is never-the less true that there has been an enormous amount of research,
experimentation and commentary in this field in recent years. A particular
confluence of forces ever-accelerating technological change; rapidly-shifting
attitudes, life-styles, and social institutions; and the paradox in many countries of
a customary prosperity threatened by doubts as to future economic performances
at least in part responsible for the burgeoning interest in the field. But important
also is its multidisciplinary nature, which has afforded to social scientists of
varied orientations the opportunity to participate in a new intellectual growth
industry. It is somewhat surprising; therefore, that QWL is a subject on which
economists have remained relatively silent. The purpose of the study by Newton
(1978) was to suggest certain areas of common interest between economists and
other social scientists in the QWL field. First, they attempted to show the
relevance for QWL research of two recent and provocative attempts to modify
traditional micro-theory. The authors argued that they are important particularly

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in lending a perspective to the QWL field, in suggesting to economists a


rethinking of their traditional mechanistic approach to the production process,
and its accompanying assumptions of a maximizing calculus, which leave little
room for qualitative workplace considerations. Secondly they attempted to
include some QWL variables in a simple model of aggregate labor input
designed to draw attention to the potentially crucial role of work humanization.
Before examining some of the features of the "new micro-theory", however, a
brief explanation of what is meant by "quality of working life" would seem to be
in order.
Studies conducted in 1977
The case developed by Drexler and Lawler (1977) describes the beginning
of the quality of work life project in which the authors were responsible for
measurement activities. In this role, the authors have attended meetings, read
correspondence and documents concerning the project, conducted interviews,
and administered questionnaires. The project was a part of a programmatic effort
jointly sponsored by the national quality of work centre, Washington, D.C. and
by the institute for Social Research at the University of Michigan. The objective
of the program was to improve the quality of the work life of the employees.
Studies conducted in 1975
Cherns (1975) in his article perspectives on the quality of working life
mentioned that QWL owes its origins to the marriage of the structural, systems
perspective of organizational behaviour with the interpersonal, human relations,
supervisory-style perspective. Its basic assumptions are: (1) that organizations
have a technical system that (2) sets the parameters for the operation of its social
system, consisting of (3) patterns of interactions that are partly task based and (4)
partly in the service of preserving the integrity of the system itself; and (5) that
the objectives of any organization allow a choice among technologies; (6) that
people have their own needs, some of which they expect to have satisfied in their

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work, and (7) others which may emerge, and require satisfying, in the work
situation. Associated with these assumptions or axioms are certain values: (1)
Autonomy is preferable to dependence, (2) High levels of skill are preferable to
low, (3) Learning is good.(4) A high degree of self-investment in work is good,
provided the work itself and the work situation offer opportunities for growth and
self-realization.
2.3

CONCLUSION
This chapter narrated the origin and development of the concept of the

quality of work life over the years. This concept originated in the United States,
slowly spread in different parts of the world and became the hottest word in the
corporate lexicon.
The review of literature clearly shows that this concept is explored from different
angles by industrial psychologists, management theorists and academicians all
over the world and lots of research works have been taken up. Today quality of
work life is a more sophisticated industrial management tool in the hands of
managers to make the organizations a better place for working, learning and
living. It has been realized that for the successful running of any enterprise,
proper handling of human factor is of paramount importance. And this human
factor, according to Jucius, (1975) refers to a whole consisting of inter-related,
inter-dependent and interacting physiological, psychological, sociological and
ethical components. At the same time, it should be noted that this human aspect
of an organization is very often subjective, qualitative and dynamic, with ones
own aspirations and intentions. As Sheldon (1923) puts it, no industry can be
rendered efficient so long as the basic fact remains unrecognized, that is
principally human. It is not a mass of machines and technical process, but a body
of men. It is not a complex of matter but a complex of humanity. It fulfills its
function not by virtue of some impersonal force, but by human energy. Its body
is not an intricate maze of mechanical devices, but a magnified nervous system.

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The theoretical background of the study given in Chapter 1 and the review
of related studies given in Chapter 2 have led the researcher to throw certain
research questions. This further led researcher to make certain assumptions and
hypotheses. These are incorporated in the methodology which is given in the next
chapter, that is, Chapter 3.

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