Academic journal article Public Personnel Management

The Effects of Family-Friendly Policies on Job Satisfaction and Organizational Commitment: A Panel Study Conducted on South Korea's Public Institutions

Academic journal article Public Personnel Management

The Effects of Family-Friendly Policies on Job Satisfaction and Organizational Commitment: A Panel Study Conducted on South Korea's Public Institutions

Article excerpt

Over the past decade, the composition of the global labor force has experienced drastic changes, developing into a heterogeneous workforce (Chin, Lee, Lee, Son, & Sung, 2012; Riccucci, 2002). In particular, the proportion of women participating in both U.S. and South Korea's labor pool continues to grow steadily since the 2000s (Ali, Kulik, & Metz, 2011). In the United States, for example, female labor participation has increased drastically from one third of the working population in 1960 to more than 50% in the 2010s (U.S. Census Bureau, 2011). Likewise, female participation in Korea's workforce has increased from 37.2% in 1965 to 50% in 2012 (Statistics Korea, 2013). Accordingly, organizations have begun to discuss the imperative need to support female employees by encouraging work-family balance, which is related to outcomes such as job satisfaction, organizational commitment, and turnover rate (Beauregard & Henry, 2009; Huang, Lawler, & Lei, 2007). Under these circumstances, governments and firms now adopt various family-friendly policies such as maternity leave, child care leave, and child care subsidy to better address social demands.

In line with these changes, scholarly interest is now given in seeking the effects of family-friendly policies on work motivation, such as job satisfaction and organizational commitment (Caillier, 2012, 2013; Clifton & Shepard, 2004; Saltzstein, Ting, & Saltzstein, 2001). Findings on the relationships between family-friendly policies and work motivation are controversial. While some studies find a negative relationship between family-friendly policies and motivation (Saltzstein et al., 2001), others find a positive relationship (Caillier, 2012, 2013; Saltzstein et al., 2001). Most of these studies examine the effects of family-friendly policies using cross-sectional data (Clifton & Shepard, 2004; J. Kim & Wiggins, 2011; Lee & Hong, 2011; Saltzstein et al., 2001). To date, there are few studies that analyze the effects of family-friendly policies using longitudinal data (Bae & Goodman, 2014; Caillier, 2016).

The purpose of this study is to investigate whether family-friendly policies such as child care leave, maternity leave, and child care subsidies have positive relationships with job satisfaction and organizational commitment. The contribution of this research on previous literature on family-friendly policies is twofold. First, this study explores the causal relationship between family-friendly policies and work motivation by using longitudinal data from 2006 to 2013. Whereas previous research looks into the effects of family-friendly policies on work motivation, few studies investigate the relationship using panel data. Bae and Goodman (2014) and Caillier (2016), for instance, explore the effects of the number of family-friendly policies on organizational performance and turnover rate using organizational-level panel data. This study builds on previous research by looking into the impact of various family-friendly policies on job satisfaction and organizational commitment based on panel data at the individual level. Furthermore, few studies, until now, examine the different effects of the official adoption and actual eligibility of telework programs (Bae & Kim, 2016; Caillier, 2013). In most cases, previous literature does not consider whether employees are actually entitled to receive the officially adopted family-friendly policies in the workplace. Therefore, we examine beyond the existence of family-friendly policies adopted by organizations and instead investigate the effects of these policies based on eligibility for employees. This study aims to supplement previous research by examining the effects of employees' eligibility of family-friendly policies on job satisfaction and organizational commitment.

Theoretical Background and Literature Review

Family-Friendly Policies in South Korea

Family-friendly policies in South Korea's organizations can be divided into two broad categories: leave policies and parental policies. …

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