Study identifies way for employers to retain casual workers

December 17, 2019

Job enrichment may be an important tool for retaining seasonal frontline staff, according to a new University of Waterloo study.

"Managers can use job enrichment to make work more engaging and to develop a bond between staff and the organization," says David Drewery, a PhD candidate in Waterloo's Department of Recreation and Leisure Studies. "Job enrichment aims to design work conditions in ways that maximize meaning, responsibility and knowledge." The study surveyed 124 seasonal student workers who had just completed a four-month-long summer job to find out whether they intended to return the following year, and the motivations behind their intentions.

It found that positive feelings about work in general (work engagement) and a psychological attachment to the organization accounted for a strong desire to return to work. Both work engagement and organizational commitment were higher when students perceived that their jobs were enriched.

"Commitment was particularly important, which means that simply making work 'fun' is not enough to retain staff," said Drewery. "Staff need to find their work meaningful, and must feel a deep connection to the organization.

"Retaining contingent staff is a key management issue because turnover is very expensive," Drewery said. "We already know that job enrichment can have great benefits for full-time employees, but this is the first study to show that part-time and casual frontline staff also benefit from job enrichment."

The research did not study the role of compensation in job retention, but rather other motivations of employees who were at the beginning of their careers.

"These results show that managers need to set clear expectations, remind frontline staff of the positive impact they have on their clients, give staff the tools they need and then trust them to use them appropriately," said Drewery. "These are the building blocks of job enrichment."

The study, Retaining contingent frontline staff through job enrichment: the case of seasonal student workers, was authored by David Drewery and published in Managing Sport and Leisure.
-end-


University of Waterloo

Related Employees Articles from Brightsurf:

How initiatives empowering employees can backfire
Strategies meant to motivate people in the workplace may have unintended consequences -- depending on who's in charge.

Some employees more likely to adhere to information security policies than others
Information security policies (ISP) that are not grounded in the realities of an employee's work responsibilities and priorities exposes organizations to higher risk for data breaches, according to new research from Binghamton University, State University of New York.

Covert tobacco industry marketing tactics exposed by former employees
Tobacco companies use covert marketing tactics and exploit loopholes in Australian tobacco control laws to promote their products despite current tobacco advertising bans, finds new research from University of Sydney and Cancer Council NSW.

How employees' rankings disrupt cooperation and how managers can restore it
First prize is a Cadillac Eldorado, second prize a set of steak knives, third prize you're firedĀ».

Employees less upset at being replaced by robots than by other people
Generally speaking, most people find the idea of workers being replaced by robots or software worse than if the jobs are taken over by other workers.

Some LGBT employees feel less supported at federal agencies
Workplace inequality is visible when it involves gender and race, but less so with sexual identity and gender expression.

Workplace interventions may improve sleep habits and duration for employees
Simple workplace interventions, like educating employees about the importance of sleep and providing behavioral sleep strategies, may produce beneficial results, according to a new review.

To keep the creative juices flowing, employees should be receptive to criticism
Though most firms today embrace a culture of criticism, when supervisors and peers dispense negative feedback it can actually stunt the creative process, according to a new study co-authored by Yeun Joon Kim, a Ph.D. student at the University of Toronto's Rotman School of Management.

How a positive work environment leads to feelings of inclusion among employees
Fostering an inclusive work environment can lead to higher satisfaction, innovation, trust and retention among employees, according to new research from Binghamton University, State University of New York.

How susceptible are hospital employees to phishing attacks?
A multicenter study finds high click rate for simulated phishing emails, potential benefit in phishing awareness training.

Read More: Employees News and Employees Current Events
Brightsurf.com is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to Amazon.com.