The Impact of the Work Environment on Employee Performance

Subject: Employee Management
Pages: 7
Words: 1831
Reading time:
7 min
Study level: PhD

Introduction

Managers in the contemporary are faced with the new challenge of creating working environments that are attractive and motivating to their workforce. As it has been revealed, employees’ level of motivation is directly proportional to their productivity in their workplaces. On this basis, organizational management should create a work environment that makes employees derive pleasure and jot from what they do, by making them feel having a purpose in their work place (Nikolaou 2003: 640). With the contemporary work place becoming diverse and quite dynamic, the employees-employer relationship has largely been dependent on both external and internal factors which regulate their interactions. For instance, there is now strong competition in the labour market to attract talent deals, which has made it difficult for contemporary organizations to maintain employee competencies, while at the same time upholding the market standards in production.

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It is important to note that, highly motivated human resources are one of the key competitive advantages among organizations (Stevens & Ash 2001: 511). In this regard, an important element in raising loyalty is the presence of a healthy work environment, appropriate for the survival of the employee. Responsibility for this reason has been down in the human resources management, which must develop policies and a system of incentives and promotion, to help create an environment in which to raise the degree of belonging and loyalty, and therefore have a direct impact on employee performance. With regard to my experience in the Saudi market, many organizations have been frequently losing potential workforce due to unhealthy and unfavourable working environments for their employees. As it has been observed, many of these organizations are not interested in the number of staff who quit their jobs, or the degree of performance. However, with a healthy environment much more profits could be achieved, if the employee force was treated with more attention, as a very important resource for the organizations’ productivity.

Statement of the Problem

As it has been observed, many organizations are being faced with frequent workforce loss due to their inefficient human resources management body. Recent research has shown how there exists a strong correlation between work environment and employees’ performance. With regard to the Saudi markets, many employees’ expectations in social organizations have not been met, since the management seems less responsible at providing a favorable working environment for their workforce (Nowier 2005: 134). This study seeks to establish ways in which the working environment in Saudi Arabian organizations improves employees’ performance.

Goals and Objectives of the Study

This study focuses on improving the work environment through identifying the typical environment for the employee in the Saudi Arabian private and public sectors. More so, this study will address the work environment in the Saudi public and private sectors, as well as make a simple comparison between them. The study also attempts to expound on the concept of a healthy environment and its subsequent impact on the employees’ performance. Basically, this research will examine the following relationships of employees’ motivation with regard to the organizations’ performance:

  1. The relationship between work environment and employees’ performance level
  2. The relationship between working environment and the organizations’ profitability
  3. The most important areas of consideration while seeking favourable work conditions among managers in social organizations
  4. The relationship between working environment and the attitude of employees towards work in both public and private sector

Research Questions

This research will be based on the following research questions:

  1. What are the appropriate requirements among employees in order to be more loyal to their employers in terms of performance?
  2. What is the precise meaning of ‘work environment’?
  3. What particular aspects of working conditions should be considered as healthy for employees’ high performance?
  4. What are the underlying reasons for making working environment among organizations healthy?
  5. Are workplace conditions related to employees’ performance among social organizations?
  6. What are the specific ways in which managers can make working environments for their employees healthy to facilitate higher performance?

The rationale and the significance of the study

Despite many business organizations being profit-oriented, very little concern has been made on the human resources. According to Nowier (2005: 135), many human resource management bodies have largely been focusing on development strategies through innovations, without considering the conditions of workplace in which their human work force operate in. In this respect, there has been rising need to carryout intensive study on how working conditions impact employees’ performance, in order to facilitate the acquirement of competitive advantage among such organizations through highly motivated work force.

As it has been observed, both physical and social environment in work places affect employee’s productivity largely. In cases where employees are experiencing unfavourable working conditions, they will find it hard to concentrate on their specific tasks, resulting into their low productivity. As revealed by Nikolaou (2003: 641), the social environment among employees is one of the core determinants of the level of motivation towards work. For instance, the leadership styles exercised by supervisors and the subsequent comments they make to their workforce impacts a lot on the employees’ performance. In the context of Saudi Arabia, not many organizations are aware of the role of employees’ motivation through favourable working conditions. As a result, many organizations have been facing consistent loss of potential workforce, resulting into their general poor performance. On this basis, there has been increasing need to share the knowledge of economic and social benefits of favourable working conditions among such organizations to facilitate higher employees’ performance.

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Literature Review

According to Nowier (2005: 127), it is of great importance for management in social organizations to consider the issue of employee motivation seriously in their pursuit of higher performance. Particularly, favorable working conditions have been revealed as a very influential factor to determine the performance of employees in social organizations. With reference to Stevens & Ash (2001: 509), the ability of employees to derive pleasure from their environment of work is a very significant issue for consideration among managers in social organizations. With regard to the recent research on workforce motivation, employees’ performance among organizations is directly related with specific aspects of their interaction with their supervisors.

The problem of poor and unfavorable working environment has been identified in many public organizations, which has greatly demoralized their workforce. As revealed in many social organizations, employees’ opinions and ideas are never considered, besides depriving employees their freedom within their working environment (Luthans & Sommer 2005: 331). In addition, many social organizations in the public sector have been revealed to be lacking the capacity to facilitate self managed teams; thus discouraging autonomy and decision making responsibility among their employees. According to Nikolaou (2003: 643), the administration of the workforce in organizations should be decentralized so as to provide a favorable working environment for workers to execute their duties more effectively. On the other hand, a decentralized system of workers would ensure that workers are given humble time and that managers would make limited interruptions.

According to Nowier (2005: 129), most of governmental organizations are non-profits oriented and are therefore less concerned with motivation of their employees. Notably, if the workers in governmental organizations are not well motivated intrinsically, they usually perform very poorly resulting low productivity within the organizations. As a result, lot resources are wasted with very low output, leading to poor economic performance in such organizations. In addition, public resources are largely misallocated, resulting into deteriorating economic performance within governmental organizations, which in turn slows down the overall economic growth and development of the country. On this basis, employees’ motivation has been revealed as a very useful strategy among organizations to enhance high profitability as a result of sustained employees’ performance.

Research Methods

The main research methods to be used in this study will be interviews and questionnaires. Various organizations in the private and public sectors will be selected in which samples of about 200 employees will be administered with questionnaires. The main form of questionnaires to be used in this research will be Cooper Stress Index Tool (CSI); where various aspects of the employees while at their work place will be covered. These aspects included emotional, physical, and social factors in determining the level of motivation of the employees within their work place. More so, about 10 managers from these organizations will be selected and be interviewed about their organizational structure and the working conditions for their employees. Further, the productivity of the organizations will be compared with the conditions of their employees’ working conditions. More so, this study will rely on different case studies from different organizations in both private and public sector. These case studies will be studied on working conditions for their employees, with regard to their overall productivity.

Structure of the Research

  • Chapter I: Includes the importance of the research and objectives in the context of the research and research questions.
  • Chapter II: Literature review focusing on human resources management and its role in the company.
  • Chapter III: Review of the literature in the work environment and its foundations and objectives.
  • Chapter IV: This chapter focuses on the research methodology, the research objectives, and justification for conducting the research, research design and data collection. The chapter also deals with the validity of the data that have been collected and the problems faced in conducting the research.
  • Chapter V: This chapter provides an analysis of the data collected in the research. The analysis is based on a conceptual framework and literature review.
  • Chapter VI: This chapter details the conclusions of the research. It summarizes the results of the research conducted, comparing the results with the theories and the conceptual framework and makes a stand.
  • Chapter VII: Recommendations for further research, applying the findings and conclusion of the Department of Human Resources in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia. The chapter provides a way forward towards implementation and evaluation of environmental health and how it can be used to improve staff loyalty and satisfaction.

Limitations of this research

This research is prone to fund shortages as it involves a lot of movements from one place to another to interview the identified individuals. In addition to transport costs, production of large number of questionnaires is also quite costly, whilst the available funds are limited. More so, the respondents involved in the process of carrying out the data collection may not respond faithfully. This is because; some of them may withhold some information concerning their social interactions in their work place, in fear of being exposed regardless of the confidence assurance of their information to be provided.

Solutions

The problems identified have been planed to be solved through various ways. First, the movements from one station to another would be limited by conducting all the research from one station without returning back. Concerning the problem of response from the respondents, it would be solve through assuring the respondents of the confidentiality of the data given by establishing a more close interaction with the respondents to win their confidence and trust. By so doing, this research will be less vulnerable to constraints and shortcomings.

References

Nowier, M. (2005) Workplace Environment and its Impact on the Employee Performance. Journal of Human Resources Management, 13(5): 123-145.

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Nikolaou, I. (2003) Fitting the Person to the Organization: Examining the Personality- Job Performance Relationship from a New Perspective. Journal of Managerial Psychology, 18 (7): 639-648.

Luthans, K. & Sommer, M. (2005) The Impact of High Performance Work on Industry Level Outcomes. Journal of Managerial Issues, 17 (3): 327-345.

Stevens, C. & Ash, R. (2001) Selecting Employees for Fit: Personality and Preferred Managerial Style. Journal of Managerial Issues, 13 (4): 500-517.