Academic journal article Journal of Behavioral and Applied Management

Psychological Empowerment and Job Satisfaction of Temporary and Part-Time Nonstandard Workers: A Preliminary Investigation

Academic journal article Journal of Behavioral and Applied Management

Psychological Empowerment and Job Satisfaction of Temporary and Part-Time Nonstandard Workers: A Preliminary Investigation

Article excerpt

ABSTRACT

This study examines several relationships between psychological empowerment and job satisfaction of temporary and part-time nonstandard workers. Data were collected from undergraduate students employed in short-term jobs outside their field of study. This study found two cognitions of psychological empowerment (meaning and impact) to be positively associated with job satisfaction. This study also tested the relationships between organizational tenure and psychological empowerment and organizational tenure and job satisfaction for temporary and part-time nonstandard workers. The results indicate a positive relationship between organizational tenure and psychological empowerment and a negative relationship between organizational tenure and job satisfaction.

Introduction

Nonstandard workers include temporary employees, part-time employees, and contracted employees (Davis-Blake, Broschak, & George, 2003; Kalleberg, 2000; Kalleberg, Reskin, & Hudson, 2000). These work arrangements are common in the U.S. economy (Befort, 2003), and Houseman and Polvika (2000) estimated nonstandard workers make up more than a quarter of the U.S. workforce. However, compared with research on standard work arrangements, research in this area is limited. Even though many nonstandard workers have less permanent work arrangements than their standard counterparts, the increasing presence of nonstandard workers in the U.S. and world economy (Allan, 2002; Broschak & Davis-Blake, 2006; Connelly & Gallagher, 2004) increases the importance of understanding their attitudes and determining how supervisors' actions may shape those attitudes.

The nonstandard workers included in this study are those in temporary and part-time work arrangements. Independent contractors are excluded from this study. Temporary and part-time nonstandard workers commonly work alongside standard workers in an organization's daily operations (Befort, 2003; Broschak & Davis-Blake, 2006). They are likely to find themselves supervised by the management of the organization in which they are currently employed (Belous, 1989; Broschak & Davis-Blake, 2006). Finally, they commonly have fewer skills and receive less compensation for their work (Kallenberg et al., 2000; Levenson, 2000; Welch, 1997). Independent contractors often consider themselves self-employed and experience job stability similar to employees with standard work arrangements (Connelly & Gallagher, 2004; Houseman & Polivka, 2000). These attributes of independent contractors are uncommon for nonstandard workers in temporary and part-time work arrangements. Due to these significant differences, this paper excludes independent contractors and references to nonstandard workers refer to temporary and part-time nonstandard workers unless otherwise specified. This study focuses on two areas of interest related to temporary and parttime nonstandard workers.

The first of these two areas is job satisfaction for temporary and part-time nonstandard workers. Job satisfaction has been studied in the context of nonstandard workers (De Witte & Naswall, 2003; Feldman, 1990; Feldman, Doerpinghaus, & Turnley, 1995; Ellingson, Gruys, & Sackett, 1998; Krausz, Brandwein, & Fox, 1995; Lowry, Simon, & Kimberley, 2002; Marler, Barringer, & Milkovich, 2002; MacNamara, 2003), but most studies compare standard and nonstandard workers to determine who has higher job satisfaction in the workplace (Connelly & Gallagher, 2004). Some research has determined selected antecedents of job satisfaction for nonstandard workers such as job security (De Witte & Naswall, 2003; MacNamara, 2003), or the election by nonstandard workers to be in a nonstandard work arrangement rather than a standard work arrangement (Feldman, 1990; Krausz et al., 1995; Ellingson et al., 1998). This study focuses on actions taken by supervisors that may affect job satisfaction of nonstandard workers. …

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