Job satisfaction among customer contact employee hospitality industry
What is job satisfaction?
Job satisfaction has a close relationship with organizational behavior wherefore it became one of the studied in organizational behavior. Organizational behavior is a field of study that investigates the impact that individuals, groups and structure have on behavior within organizations for the purpose of applying such knowledge towards improving an organization’s effectiveness. In the other word, organizational behavior focused to the study about how the disciplines influence organization’s performance. The main disciplines are psychology, social psychology, anthropology and political science. According to Bateman and Strasser (1984), Sikorska (2005), and Kim et al. (2005), job satisfaction and organizational commitment having positive relationship that has been reported in several studies.
Job satisfaction can be defined as a positive feeling about his or her job. The employee will feel satisfied if they have a positive feeling toward their job. And if they are dissatisfied, means they have a negative feeling toward the job. According to the Locke (1969, 1976) job satisfaction is a pleasurable or positive emotional state resulting from the appraisal of one’s job or job experiences. In the simple way, job satisfaction defines what makes people come to work happily and not to quit their job. Job satisfaction is the result of the perception of employee of how well their job in providing the things that is viewed as important. As opinion from Levinson (1997) and Moser (1997), job satisfaction is so important in that its absence often leads to apathy and reduced on organizational commitment. The lack of job satisfaction is the main factor of quitting a job (Alexander, Litchtenstein and Hellmann, 1997; Jamal, 1997).
Dimensions of Jobs Satisfaction
Dimension of jobs satisfaction or known as facets are using by employee to judging their job satisfaction. Luthan (1988) declared the three important dimensions about job satisfaction, such as:
Job satisfaction is an emotional response to a job satisfaction. As it cannot be seen, it can only be inferred.
Job satisfaction determined by how well the outcome exceeds the expectation. For example, when the employee feel that he/she are working more hard than other employee in the department but the other person receiving more rewards than the hard worker, he will probably have a negative attitudes toward their work, the supervisor and or collages. Otherwise they will have positive attitudes toward their job when they feel that people treated him/her well and paid by a good salary.
The work, promotion opportunities, pay, supervision and coworkers are the characteristics that most important for Luthan.
The 5 facets that mention by Luthan which is work itself, promotion opportunities, pay, supervision and coworkers are very important for the employee to stay satisfied and happy. Pay satisfaction is how the employee feels about their salary, whether it enough or not for them. Next is the promotion satisfaction, it is employees’ feeling about the company’s promotion policy. The supervision also influences the satisfaction of employees. When the quality of supervision is good or higher, the satisfaction rate also will increase. Forth is coworker, it is important for hotel to make sure that between the workers there are a good communication and socialization. Last but not least is the work itself. It is how the employee feels about their working place whether they interesting or challenging.
According to the research that conducted by Chuang, Yin and Jenkins (2008), the hotel chefs have a low satisfaction in the salary, paid vacation and the promotion from hotel. It support the 5 facets of job satisfaction influence the employee satisfaction.
Job Satisfaction Theories
One of the popular theory of job satisfaction defined by Herzberg et al (1959), also called the Motivation-Hygiene Theory. He concluded that such factors as pay, promotion, supervision, coworker and the satisfaction with the work itself are judging their job satisfaction. Herzberg proposed that job satisfaction influenced by 2 factors those affecting people attitudes about work; motivator and hygiene. See the figure below to understand more.
Quality of Supervision
Physical working conditions
Relationship with others
Job security http://2.bp.blogspot.com/_DR4j8G8MPCo/TKtAAvskEqI/AAAAAAAAABM/G5ju8RznK64/s1600/sad-face.jpg
Opportunities for personal growth
Figure 1.1 Herzberg Theory
According to Herzherg’s theory, motivators are intrinsic factors that will satisfy people for the psychological needs (Hancer and George, 2003, p. 86), such as personal interest, responsibility for task, achievement, advancement to higher level task, interesting job, and moral values. These psychological needs related to the self fulfillment.
Hygiene factors such as status, job security, salary and fringe benefits are mentioned as extrinsic factors that related to working conditions and environment (Kosmoski, 1997). It concerned to job context or extrinsic factors like how people are treated at work. The lack of hygiene level can cause job dissatisfaction, but their present will not motivate or create satisfaction. These are extrinsic factor to the work itself and it also includes aspect like working conditions, coworkers, quality of supervision, salary, company policy and administration.
He proposed several key findings as a result of this identification:
Employee seldom feels satisfied by the good environment, but when the environment is bad, it will make them dissatisfied.
The prevention of dissatisfaction is just as important as encouragement of motivator satisfaction
Hygiene factors become the major factor causing dissatisfaction and unmotivated with the work environment.
All hygiene factors are equally important, although their frequency of occurrence differs considerably
Hygiene improvements have short-term effects – any improvements result in a short-term removal of, or prevention of, dissatisfaction
Hygiene are the basic and starting point in order to lead to satisfaction
2.1.1 Applying Herzberg’s Theory within the Workplace
Employee dissatisfied and unmotivated
Employee satisfied and
Employees not dissatisfied but unmotivatedIn order for employee to doing well in work, they need to be motivated by the job of leaders.
Figure 1.2 Applying Herzberg’s Theory in Workplace
When the employee feels they are not satisfied enough and unmotivated, the company needs to fulfill their hygiene factors such as give the competitive salary, create a pleasant working place or safe working condition. After the hygiene factors fulfilled, the employees will still unmotivated but they are not dissatisfied anymore. Therefore the company needs to take next step which is motivated their workers, for example like praise the employee when they did a job well, give responsibility or allow the employee to use their creativity in the work. When the company uses this theory and applies it properly, it is believed the company would have happy and motivated workers.
2.2 Maslow’s Theory
Maslow’s Theory or what is often called Hierarchy of Needs model was developed by Abraham Mashlow in 1940-1950s in USA and until now the theory is still popular and used to motivate people, management training and personal development. Basis of this theory is that human beings are motivated by the unsatisfied needs. And the lower needs must be met first before higher needs can be satisfied. According to Maslow, there are few basic needs to be fulfilled such as physiological, survival, safety, love and self esteem so that people do not act selfish. These needs named deficiency needs. When we are motivated to satisfy those needs, we will move towards growth and self actualization.
Hierarchy of needs often describes as pyramid where the fundamental needs are at the bottom and at the top is self actualization. The figure below will show the pyramid of hierarchy of needs.
Figure 1.3 Pyramid of Hierarchy Needs
The figure above shows the needs of employee from the basic to the highest need. There are 5 needs that should be fulfilled in order to motivate and satisfy the employee. Those 5 needs are:
Physiological needs. These needs are the strongest needs because they are the requirement for human survival. They consist of food, water, air, sex and shelter.
Safety needs. After the physiological needs all are satisfied, then people will require the need of safety. Safety needs include financial security, personal security, health and well-being, and safety against accidents or illness.
Belongingness and love needs. Once a person has met physiological and safety needs, the next class which is belongingness and love needs become important. This aspect involves emotionally based on relationships such as friends, family and to giving love and to be loved. Human need to feel a sense of belonging and acceptance whether in the place their work, family and also society.
Esteem needs. All human need to be respected and to have self esteem and self respect. Esteem needs could be internal and external. Internal needs are related to self esteem such as self respect and achievement. And external needs are like social status and recognition. According to Maslow, there are two kinds of esteem needs, the lower and the higher. The lower one is the need for status, recognition, fame, prestige and attention. And the higher is the need for self respect, the need of strength, competence, mastery, self confidence, independence and freedom.
Self actualization happen when all the other needs are satisfied, then self actualization will activate. Self actualization is the desire for growth and self fulfillment and to become the best of one is capable of becoming or achieving one’s potential.
2.2.1 Applying Maslow Theory within the Workplace
Maslow’s Theory Level
What the organization could do?
Competitive salary, cafeteria, good working conditions
Safe working condition, company benefit, job security
Work social events, good team work, friendly supervision
Feedback via appraisal, praising the staff, promotion and job title
Stimulating responsibilities, challenging job and allow creativity in job
Table 1.1 Applying Maslow Theory in Workplace
2.3 Linking of Maslow and Herzberg Theory
Hierarchy of Needs Motivation-Hygiene Theory
Hygiene Maintenance Factors
Figure 1.4 Link of Mashlow and Herzberg Theory
Importance of Job Satisfaction
Job satisfaction has been found to be associated with organizational trust (Rich, 1997) and helps increase employee performance (Arnett et al., 2002). Job satisfaction also serves as a significant predictor in organizational commitment and retention (Hartman and, 1996; Kim et al., 2004; Lalopa, 1997). When hospitality employees are satisfied with their job, they are more willing to:
Provide service that exceeds customers’ expectations (Dienhart and Gregoire, 1993); and
Positively influence guests’ attitude toward the image of the hotel (Spinelli and Canavos, 2000).
In contrast, employees who are dissatisfied with their job are likely to have more occupational stress and be less productive (Savery, 1988). Thus, highly committed, high performing, and happy employees are valuable resources to the hospitality industry. Job satisfaction has been recognized as a component of organizational commitment (Kovach, 1977). It is suggested that job satisfaction is a state of pleasure gained from applying one’s values to a job (Locke, 1969). Spector (1997, p.2) believes that job satisfaction “can be considered as a global feeling about the job or as a related constellation of attitudes about various aspects or facets of the job. “Researchers have found that job satisfaction is correlated with turnover but not to the extent that a predictive model can be created. (Kraut, 1975; Mobley, 1982: Mobley Griffeth, Hand, and Meglino, 1979).
In any service context, employee satisfaction is crucial as it is closely linked to customer satisfaction. It is therefore in the best interest of an organization to devote a substantial amount of effort examining ways to improve as well as maximize the satisfaction an employee has in the workplace. Snipes, Oswald, LaTour, Achilles and Armenakis (2005) explain that previous research has shown that employee job satisfaction is a relevant factor in service quality improvement because employees who feel satisfied with their jobs provide higher levels of customer satisfaction. As customer satisfaction may be directly linked to encounters with staff; it is important to devote a substantial amount of effort in the way employees interact with customers. Bitner (1990) noted that employees should be seen as performers and not just as workers as their behavioral performance is the service quality that customers perceive.
It is generally believed that high job satisfaction will result in higher performance, better attendance, reduced turnover and increased willingness to work with others. On the other hand, low job satisfaction is usually related to lower performance and increased turnover.
Importance of Job Satisfaction for Customer Contact Employees
Customer contact employee defined as the worker who has a direct contact with the customer. In the hospitality industry customer contact employee can be waitress, concierge, Front desk staff, butler or manager.
Job satisfaction and empowerment of employees are the two important factors that influenced service quality (Geralis & Terziovski, 2003; Snipes, Oswald, LaTour, & Armenakis, 2005)Schlesinger and Heskett (1991) suggest Cycle of Success model which show the relationship of job satisfaction and service quality. This model show that “employee satisfaction, which is influenced by internal service quality, leads to increased employee performance, which in turn leads to customer satisfaction, customer loyalty, and increased financial performance of a firm” (Schlesinger & Heskett, 1991). According to Hartline and Ferrel (1996), hospitality industry depends on customer contact employee in terms of service delivery because the delivery of service occurs during the interaction between customer contact employee and customer. Furthermore, customer perception could be influence by the employee contact’s attitude.
Happy customers made by happy employees in a good bottom line (Lashley, 2001). The five dimensions off service quality which is reliability, empathy, tangibles, responsiveness and assurance are delivered by customer contact employees. Moreover, Heskett et al., (1994) proposed “the service profit chain is a model that demonstrates the link between employee satisfaction, service quality, customer satisfaction and business performance. The employees will more likely to work productively for the company if they feel satisfied with their work environment. Customer satisfaction will lead to the loyalty and recommended sales. The loyal customer can increase the sales and profit because they are more profitable.
The hotel needs to make sure the employees satisfied with their work environment, if they are not satisfied, the company can have problem with a cycle of poor employee retention, staff shortages and employees with lack of experience and knowledge. The loyal customer will decrease, means less customer wants to return and it will lead to decline in profit.
Importance of Intrinsic and Extrinsic Factors on Job Satisfaction
Herzberg et al. (1959) develops the theory named as two factor theory which is known as the best theory of job satisfaction. This theory contain of intrinsic (motivation) and extrinsic (hygiene) factor. Intrinsic factor defined as “satisfy people’s psychological needs, such as security, personal interest, responsibility, achievement, advancement and moral values” (Hancer and George, 2003, p. 86). According to Kosmoski (1997), hygiene factors are related to the work conditions and environment such as pay, job security, physical working conditions, relations with collages, company policy and supervision.
Chuang, Yin and Jenkins (2008) have done the research about the intrinsic and extrinsic factors that impacting casino hotel chefs’ job satisfaction. The research found that intrinsic factor is the major factor to the job satisfaction. This research is the same with the previous research that the major factor of employee satisfaction is the intrinsic factors (Kosmoski, 1997; Hancer and Geroge, 2003) and the overall job satisfaction is influenced by the job itself. In this research, the source of low satisfaction of employee was the recognition. Borchgrevink et al.’s (1998) in his studied say that working hard without any recognition creates the negative experience of employee.
Unrelated duties, paid vacation, salary and sick leave days are reported as the extrinsic factors that lead the low satisfaction. Kosmoski (1997), O’Leary and Deegan (2005) say that “these extrinsic factors are the key reasons for changing companies, changing careers, or leaving the hospitality industry”.
Job Satisfaction and Employee Outcome
Brad Bird’s opinion about the importance of job satisfaction is consistently reflected in the actions of leaders in many companies, who carefully monitor job satisfaction and related employee attitudes every year. An added incentive is the increasing competition to win awards for their workplaces. In some company, bonuses depend partly on employee satisfaction ratings. A useful example for organizing and understanding the consequences of job dissatisfaction is the exit-voice-loyalty-neglect (EVLN)model. As the name suggests, the EVLN model identifies for ways that employees respond to dissatisfaction:
Exit includes leaving the organization, transferring to another work unit, or at least trying to get away from unsatisfactory situation. The general theory is that job dissatisfaction increases from time to time and is eventually strong enough to motivate employees to search for better work opportunities in other place.
Voice is any way or trying to change, rather than escape from the unsatisfactory situation. Voice can be a constructive response, such as recommending ways for management to improve the situation, or it can be more formal, such as filing formal grievances or forming a coalition to oppose a decision.
In the original version of the EVLN model, loyalty was not an outcome of dissatisfaction. Rather, it determined whether people want to choose exit or voice, for example high loyalty resulted in voice; low loyalty produced exit. More recent writers describe loyalty as an outcome, but in various and somewhat unclear ways. Generally, they suggest that loyalists are employees who respond to dissatisfaction by patiently waiting some people say and solve the problem while they suffer with the work.
Neglect includes reducing work effort, paying less attention to quality, and increasing absenteeism and lateness. It is generally considered a passive activity that has negative consequences for the organization.
Jobs Satisfaction and Organizational Commitment
Bateman and Strasser (p.95) explain organizational commitment as “multidimensional in nature, involving an employee’s loyalty to the organization, willingness to exert effort on behalf of the organization, degree of goal and value congruency with the organization, and desire to maintain membership”. It is an emotional attachment which is held by individual employees toward their work. “Most of the research has treated job satisfaction as an independent and organizational commitment as a dependent variable” (Gaertner, 1999; Jernigan et al., 2002; Lok and Crawford, 2001; Mowday et al;k 1982). Mowday et al., (1982) suggest that job satisfaction and commitment may be seen in several ways. Job satisfaction is a response to the job or job-related issues while commitment is response to an organization. Because of that, commitment should be more consistent than job satisfaction over time and it takes longer time after employee satisfied with his/her job (Feinstein and Vondrasek, 2001, p. 6). Feinstein and Vondrasek (2001) analyzed about the effects of job satisfaction and organizational commitment toward the employee in restaurant and the result proved that satisfaction level of employee would predict their commitment to the organization. The findings showed that commitment to an organization determined by job satisfaction. Jernigan et al., (2002, p.567). Jernigan et al., (2002) examined the role of specific aspects of work satisfaction play as predictors of organizational commitment type. He found that affective commitment varied with one’s satisfaction with aspect of the work context.
Maxwell and Steele (2003) had done the research among hotel managers and found several factors that would increase the level of commitment, such as
High levels of equal pay
Employer’s interest in them
Co-operation and trust between the employees as well as between the other managers in the hotel
Opportunities to engage in social activities
Those issue above also listed as factors influenced job satisfaction. The payment strategy is included in extrinsic satisfaction variable, the interest of employee is accepted as intrinsic job satisfaction variable, co-operation and trust are intrinsic whereas in terms of working conditions they are general job satisfaction variables, and opportunities to participate in social activities is intrinsic factor. In the other word, “some researchers have admitted that organizational commitment may be an independent variable with job satisfaction as an outcome” (Bateman and Strasser, 1984; Vandenberg and Lance, 1992). Lau and Chong (2002) think that managers who have higher levels of job satisfaction are higher committed to the organization. According to their research, highly commited managers strive for the organizational goals and interests. Because of that, the satisfaction is suggested as an outcome rather than an antecedent. Organizational commitment is a better predictor because it’s a more global and enduring response to the organization as a whole than is job satisfaction. An employee might be dissatisfied with a particular job, consider it a temporary condition and not be dissatisfied with the organization as a whole. But when dissatisfaction spreads to the organization itself, individuals are more likely to consider resigning. If employees have strong organizational commitment, they are more likely to tolerate short periods of unsatisfactory working situations. This second feature is crucial for maintaining employee loyalty during turbulent periods such as when organizational change, takeovers, mergers and restructuring occur.
Job Satisfaction and Performance
The relationship between job satisfaction and service quality has been suggested by the “Cycle of Success” model (Schlesinger and Heskett, 1991). The model says that job satisfaction which is caused by internal service quality, leads to increased job performance, which in turn leads to customer satisfaction, customer loyalty, and increased financial performance of a company.
According to Stuart Wilson, the chief executive of the Australian Shareholders Association, the performance of a company is impacted by the morale of the staff. Organizational behavior scholars have challenged this belief, concluding that job satisfaction minimally affects job performance. There is a moderate relationship between job satisfaction and job performance. In simple words it means happy workers really are more productive workers to some extent.
Job dissatisfaction can lead to a variety of outcomes other than lower job performance (neglect). Some employees continue to work productively while they complain (voice), look for another job (exit), or patiently wait for the problem to be fixed (loyalty). The next explanation is that job performance leads to job satisfaction (rather than vice versa), but only when performance is linked to valued rewards. Higher performers receive more rewards and, consequently, are more satisfied than low-performing employees who receive fewer rewards. The relationship between job satisfaction and performance is not stronger because of many organizations do not reward good performance. And the last explanation is that job satisfaction influences employee motivation but does not affect performance in jobs where employees have little control over their job output (such as assembly-line work).
Job Satisfaction and Customer Satisfaction
Job satisfaction creates a pleasant emotion in employees and leads to a positive work attitude. This positive work attitude will bring positive impact on other workers and customers (Robins, 2007). Jackson thinks all of the employees are considered as representative of their company by any average customer. Therefore if a customer sees that an employee does not have a satisfied, negative and bad attitude a customer may make the wrong assumptions leading the customer to question the trustworthiness of the company and resulting in decreased sales for the company (Dunham, 2007 and Wener, 2007)
The literature offers several explanations of the reason employee satisfaction affects customer satisfaction.
Employee that have contact with customers are in the position where they will develop awareness of respond to customer goal and needs
Satisfied employees are motivated employees so they have motivational resources to deliver adequate effort and care
Satisfied employees are empowered employees. Means that they already have been trained and have responsibilities to understand and serve customer needs and demands
Satisfied employees have a willingness to give a good service. They can deliver a positive perception of the service or product provided.
Kevin Page described that happy customers are the result of happy employees. Increasing in job satisfaction will result in higher customer perception of value, thereby improving the hotel’s profitability. There are two main reasons why job satisfaction could predict customer satisfaction. The first is employees are usually will have positive mood when they feel satisfied with their jobs and working conditions. The employee who are in a good mood show friendliness and positive emotions naturally and frequently and this causes customers to experience positive emotions. The next reason is satisfied employees are rarely think to resign their jobs, so the employee have better knowledge and skills to serve the clients. Lower turnover also enables customers to have the same employees serve them, so there is more consistent service. Some evidence shows that customers build their loyalty to specific employees, not to the organization, so keeping employee turnover low tends to build customer loyalty.
Job satisfaction and turnover
Turnover or called as staff turnover is the rate of which employer gain or loses their employees. High level of job satisfaction will not create zero turnovers but it will help to reduce the turnover rate. While the dissatisfaction encourages the employee to leave their job and switch to other organization, the satisfied employee will think about a lot of factor before they take decision to leave the company. In the other word, job satisfaction is negatively related to turnover; when the rate of satisfaction is high, the turnover will be low and vice versa (Robin, 2001). Hutlin et al. (1985) as a turnover researcher said that there are 2 factors that cause employee to leave their job, namely job satisfaction and perceived job alternatives. Job satisfaction might cause the employee began to think to leave their job and compare with the possibility of jobs to be had and in the end the employee will leave the organization (Mobley, 1977). Gishelli and La Lopa (2001) have been doing research on turnover that occurred at the restaurant managers. In their study, they found that salary and work hours are the main issue. The employees feel that they working very long hours while the salary is just too low.
Job satisfaction and demographic characteristics
According to Mount (2007) and Sarker et al. (2003), job satisfaction and demographic factor such as age has a relationship with a positive linear function. Moreover, employee who has much of work experience and tenure advantages can lead them to adjust their expectations to a more realistic level.
In the studies of employee satisfaction in the Iberian hotel industry, the researchers had done the survey about the impact of demographic characteristic to job satisfaction. They found that the satisfied of hotel employees are influenced by age, gender, education level, the type of employment contract, work shift and salary. First, the older employee are less satisfied than the young employee. The young people who get the job will have a positive feeling to their job. Then, the man worker with a permanent contract is more satisfied than the female and temporary contract. It is reported that the temporary workers have less satisfaction compared with workers with permanent contracts. The next is the salary or wage. There are a positive relationship between satisfaction and salary, the higher the salary, the higher the level of satisfaction. Next, the young employees with high educational level are less satisfies then the low educational level. This is because the worker with high educational level has a higher expectation than the low educational level. And the last but not least is work shift. The result shows that the night shift have higher rate of satisfaction than the morning shift. It is might because the employee have chosen this shift and it suitable for them or perhaps in the morning shift the employee need to work harder.
Job satisfaction and absenteeism
Absenteeism is the personal problem that often happened in the company. Various researches find that there is a relationship between job satisfaction and absenteeism. Luthans (1995) says that job satisfaction and absenteeism have an inverse relationship which is consistent, for example if level of satisfaction is high, then the level of absenteeism will be low and when the satisfaction is low, the absenteeism tends to be high. Means that lack of job satisfaction could leads to absenteeism but in the other word, absenteeism is a possible factor of the low satisfaction (Hulin and Teven, 2008). Employee who continually absent with no apparent reason may be due because of his/her dissatisfaction with the working environment. However, there are dissatisfied employee who still come to work because they do not want their salary to be deduct. But the hotels that provide liberal-sick-leave benefits for workers can encourage the workers to take sick leave (Robins et al., 2003). It is very important for the hotel to give the clear definition about the purpose of the liberal-sick-leave because if employee do not know this clearly, it will leads to absenteeism even for the employee are satisfied with their job. At the end, it can cause a problem for hotel. The study about hotel in Ireland found that the employees with high satisfaction level had much higher attendance than did those with lower satisfaction level.
Figure 1.5 Theoretical Frame Work
H1. There is a relationship between extrinsic factor and overall job satisfaction
Extrinsic factor that related to work conditions and environment has a strong relationship with job satisfaction. Employee will not reach the satisfaction level if their extrinsic factors are not fulfilled. This is support by the research that conducted by Simons and Enz (1995), in their study found that to motivate employee, extrinsic factor is more important than the intrinsic factor. Other research also found that in order to make employee happy, employee status, departments, tenure status, and demographic background were play the important roles.
H2. There is a relationship between intrinsic factor and overall job satisfaction
According to Herzberg theory, intrinsic factor is related to the self-fulfillment. Intrinsic factors have a relationship with overall job satisfaction. But it is not strong as extrinsic factor to job satisfaction. For example, not every employee’s prioritize the achievement, for some employee their purpose to work is salary and the pleasure working environment. Herzberg says that this factors that will lead employee to satisfaction and motivation. However, in several researches, intrinsic factor was not taking a big role of the job satisfaction.
H3. There is a relationship between demographic factor and overall job satisfaction
There are a strong relationship between demographic factor and overall job satisfaction. Previous research found that age and overall job satisfaction have a relationship (Frye and Mount, 2007; Jabulani 2001; Shinnar, 1998). Lam et al. (2001) says that well educated people have higher expectation than the lower profiles, because of that the satisfaction level of well-educated profile will lesser than lower profile.