Empowerment job design and satisfaction of the blue-collars’ motivational needs: A case study of Étoile du Rhône and Rastatt Mercedes-Benz factories
Independent thesis Advanced level (degree of Master (One Year)), 10 credits / 15 HE creditsStudent thesis
The main purpose of this research is to study the impact of the empowerment Job Design (JD) techniques on the satisfaction of the blue-collars’ motivational needs in the context of assembly line system in the automotive industry. We have developed this purpose aiming to make a theoretical contribution due to the fact that only a few studies were developed and were linked to the empowerment model developed by Conger and Kanungo (1988) which is a JD model relevant for the context of assembly line work which is qualified as repetitive and monotone. To fulfil this gap, we have established a conceptual model based on the empowerment model developed by Conger and Kanungo (1988) and theories of motivational needs. We conducted our thesis with the following research question as guideline:
What are the effects of the empowerment job design on the satisfaction of the blue-collars’ motivational needs in an automotive assembly line system context?
Our objective of this research question was: to study the impact of the empowerment Job Design techniques on the blue-collars’ motivational needs thanks to a case study as research design. This research is made independently to the effects of the context on the blue-collar’s motivation. We have conducted a quantitative study from a positivist and objectivist perspective in two MB (Mercedes-Benz) factories: ELC Étoile du Rhône in France (sample part factory) and Rastatt MB (engine factory) in Germany. Also, we have made questionnaires to distribute these to the blue-collars located in these two MB factories which allowed us to get 67 respondents. The set of 15 questions that constitutes our questionnaire dealt with how the empowerment JD techniques affect their motivational needs. Once the data were collected, we used SPSS for statistical analysis. We retrieved some specific analysis such as descriptive statistics, correlations and regressions. In addition to that, we used Cronbach’s Alpha to test the reliability of our results.
We measured the impacts of the empowerment JD techniques (participative management, feedback, modelling contingent/ competence based reward, goal setting and job enrichment) on the motivational needs (existence needs, relation-oriented needs and growth-oriented needs).
The results of our findings definitely went in the way that the empowerment JD techniques have a positive impact on the satisfaction of the blue-collars’ motivational needs. Indeed, our analysis indicated positive correlations of all of the empowerment JD techniques on the motivational needs except the JD technique "modelling contingent/ competence based reward". Also, we found that the impacts on the relation-oriented needs (RN) were the strongest ones.
Thus, we hope that this paper will help the assembly line managers to become aware of their blue-collars’ potential in order to increase their performance and to improve their employees job satisfaction.
Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2015. , 85 p.
assembly line system, automotive industry, blue-collars, empowerment, Job Design, motivation, motivational needs, need satisfaction
IdentifiersURN: urn:nbn:se:umu:diva-109193OAI: oai:DiVA.org:umu-109193DiVA: diva2:855838
Master's Programme in Management
Bonnedahl, Karl Johan, Senior lecturer
Nylén, Ulrica, Senior lecturer