Describe the core characteristics model of job enrichment. Explain how this model can provide guidance to practicing managers.
According to the core characteristics model of job enrichment that is shown in Figure 14.7 of the textbook, an enriched job will be high on the following core job characteristics:
• Skill variety the degree to which a job requires a variety of different activities to carry out the work and involves the use of a number of different skills and talents of the individual.
• Task identity the degree to which the job requires the completion of a “whole” and identifiable piece of work; that is, one that involves doing a job from beginning to end with a visible outcome.
• Task significance the degree to which the job has a substantial impact on the lives or work of other people elsewhere in the organization or in the external environment.
• Autonomy the degree to which the job gives the individual substantial freedom, independence, and discretion in scheduling the work and in determining the procedures to be used in carrying it out.
• Feedback from the job itself the degree to which carrying out the work activities required by the job results in the individual obtaining direct and clear information on the results of his or her performance.
The core job characteristics directly impact three critical psychological states. Skill variety, task identity, and task significance affect experienced meaningfulness of work; autonomy influences experienced responsibility for the outcomes of the work; and feedback affects knowledge of actual results of work activities. The critical psychological states, in turn, influence the following job outcomes: high internal work motivation, high growth satisfaction, high general job satisfaction, and high work effectiveness. The core job characteristics will not affect everyone in the same way. Employees who have high growth-need strength and the requisite knowledge and skills, and are satisfied with the work context will respond more favorably to enriched jobs.
For those employees who will likely respond favorably to job enrichment, managers can improve core job characteristics. Managers can do this in the following ways:
• Form natural units of work make sure that the tasks people perform are logically related to one another and provide a clear and meaningful task identity.
• Combine tasks expand job responsibilities by pulling together into one larger job a number of smaller tasks previously done by others.
• Establish client relationships put people in contact with others who, as clients inside and/or outside the organization, use the results of their work.
• Open feedback channels provide opportunities for people to receive performance feedback as they work and to learn how performance changes over time.
• Practice vertical loading give people more control over their work by increasing their authority for planning and controlling activities previously done by supervisors.
Source: Management, 11th Edition & 12th Edition- John R. Schermerhorn