Employee Commitment and Job Attitude

Abstract

The main aim of this research study is to analyze the moderation effect of service quality on the relationship between employee commitment and job attitude of performance for the elderly in the tourism industry. In line with this, the specific objectives were: to determine the effects of biographical factors on job attitude; to evaluate how job motivation and satisfaction affect the level of commitment and attitude within the workplace; to determine if a relationship exists between job commitment and job attitude among employees, and to determine the effects of biographical factors on employee commitment.

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The study relied on primary data using structured questions to explain the main objective. This research study attempts to explain the various theories related to employee commitment and job attitude. The study used a cross-sectional research design to meet the objectives. The data of the survey were analyzed using statistical techniques such as SPSS, ANOVA, regression, and correlation analysis. The study found out that biographical characteristics of the employees affected job attitude and job commitment. To enhance job satisfaction, employees need to be motivated in a relevant manner.

Introduction

Overview

This chapter covers the background to the study, problem statement, research objectives, hypotheses, and the significance of the study.

Background to the study

Over the current years, various research work articles by scholars have mainly focused on employee commitment to work and employee attitude to work to enhance the quality of their service delivery or job performance. The proof alluding to this is the availability of a wide range of literature about the problem at hand.

Research has proved that there is a negative correlation between employee commitment to work and the satisfaction they derive from their job (Gaertner, 1999, p. 482). Various factors have been used to analyze this negative relationship; they include the employees’ sluggishness in terms of reporting to work, the level of absenteeism by the employees, and how the employees are remunerated for performing their works (Gonzalez & Garazo, 2006, p. 42). The chances of an employee remaining committed to the organization mainly rely on their level of productivity and the organization’s commitment to supporting them.

The tourism industry is highly accorded in today’s society, about this, it is expected that the employees in this industry have a good attitude to work and are highly committed to achieving a higher result for the organization (Martin & Hafer, 1995, p. 318). The work performance of employees in the organization can be analyzed by gauging the level of commitment of employees and analyzing the level of satisfaction that they derive from doing the job.

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There are numerous definitions relating to employee commitment. Many studies have established relations between work commitment with attitude and behaviors in the places of work (Maxwell & Steele, 2008, p. 365). The basis for studying employee commitment and their attitude to work is related to the employees’ behavior and their performance efficiency (McClurg, 1999, p. 18). Employee commitment is multi-dimensional encompassing workers’ loyalty, their willingness to put more effort on behalf of the organization, sticking to the values of the organization, and their desire to remain in the organization (Meyer & Allen, 1991, p. 72).

Employee commitment and job attitude are nowadays considered as one of the most important and controversial elements in human resource management; the subject of employee commitment is mostly linked to work values, work motivation, and work involvement. The problem of employee commitment about full-time and part-time working has not been fully explored and therefore requires detailed studying and analysis. This study aims at bridging this gap by adding some more significant information to the subject.

The general and basic information on the problem of employee commitment and job satisfaction as a part of job involvement and job effectiveness has been explored by various researchers (Miller, et al., 2002, p. 47). The authors provide the aspects of general management theory and key principles to hospitality organizations. The thorough analysis of the problem requires the studying of contemporary theories on the question. The current research articles offer a comprehensive analysis of modern theories on central human resources activities; they provide views on a new discussion on workplace wellness and ethics in human resources management.

The commitment of the employees towards their work mainly occurs when the employees are motivated. Motivation is essential for making the employees adopt a positive attitude towards the job. Without motivation, the workers feel short-changed as they have nothing much to work on (Morrison & Robinson, 1997, p. 237). To define the problem more specifically, Schermerhorn, Hunt & Osborn (2003) among the range of issues also focus on the questions of ethics, leadership, and work commitment of employees in the tourism industry. They assert that part-time work is becoming more popular despite its controversial work arrangements.

Statement of the problem

The current media coverage that centers on the tourism industry about its sluggish growth has confirmed that employees in the industry have a varied level of commitment and attitudes to their jobs (Morrow, 1993, p. 28). Some employees have been portrayed as not committed at all towards the performance of their jobs. About this, some workers are very lazy and lack a great sense of professionalism; furthermore, they are seen as people who only come to work just to receive their salary at the end of every month. If the employee performance is to be raised, the organization needs to focus much on altering the working environment to fit the level of satisfaction of the employees; this enables the employees to adopt a positive attitude towards their job, thus, enabling them to implement the logic of professionalism (Morrison & Robinson, 1997, p. 237).

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Employees most often air their dissatisfaction about the various changes in terms of job policies. They are not always consulted when effecting these changes. In addition, some of their rights are most commonly violated; about this, many employees feel frustrated and disappointed with their jobs. Because of this, their level of commitment and productivity is majorly affected. When employees are allowed to make decisions about the job environment that they work in, they develop a positive attitude towards the job that they do; with this regard, satisfaction is enhanced and at the same time, productivity is enhanced.

Casual employment has been increasing very fast for the last two decades, particularly in the service sector such as the tourism industry. Many researchers have argued that there are many benefits associated with employment for both organizations and workers. However, the tourism industry in many countries has experienced a comparatively high level of staff turnover that has resulted in increased costs for the businesses. The most significant factor contributing to this turnover rate is the level of job commitment among employees of these organizations. This paper explores the relationship between employee commitment and job attitude on service quality.

Objectives of the study

The general objective of this study was to explore the relationship between employee commitment and job attitude on service quality for the elderly in the tourism industry. In line with the general objective, the study examined the following specific objectives:

  1. To determine the effects of biographical factors on job attitude;
  2. To evaluate how job motivation and satisfaction affect the level of commitment and attitude within the workplace;
  3. To determine if a relationship exists between job commitment and job attitude among employees;
  4. To determine the effects of biographical factors on employee commitment.

Research Hypotheses

To meet the above objectives, the following hypotheses were tested:

  1. Ho1: Biographical factors do not affect job attitude;
  2. Ho2: Job motivation and satisfaction have no impact on employee commitment and job attitude;
  3. Ho3: There is no relationship between job commitment and job attitude among employees;
  4. Ho4: Biographical factors do not affect employee commitment.

Justification of the Study

The findings of this study are of great value to policymakers and regulatory authorities. It provides the policymakers with a wide exposure about the assessment on how employee commitment and job attitude leads to higher service quality, thus enabling them to adopt the relevant strategies in line with the situation. The findings of this study also add to the body of knowledge of related studies about employee commitment and job attitude.

Scope of the Study

The scope of this study was in line with the general objective, which was to explore the relationship between employee commitment and job attitude on service quality for the elderly in the tourism industry. Using primary data and applying statistical techniques, the study explained the variables to meet the research objectives.

Literature Review

Introduction

This chapter reviews the theories both empirical and theoretical that are closely linked to the moderation effect of service quality on the relationship between employee commitment and job attitude of performance for elderly in the tourism industry.

Employee commitment

According to Bratton & Gold (2007), employee commitment is relative to the worker’s attachment or participation in the organization in which he/she is employed. Employee commitment is very significant since it determines whether an employee is likely to leave his/her job or improve performance. There have been numerous studies related to the concept of employee commitment. Mowday, Steers & Porter (1979) emphasized the concept referred to as attitudinal commitment and behavioral commitment. Another concept was introduced by Meyer & Allen (1997). This is the most recognized concept of employee commitment. In this approach, employee commitment has three multi-dimensional components namely: affective commitment, continuance commitment, and normative commitment.

Affective commitment relates to emotional attachment and is normally linked to a favorable working environment and relationship with the other employees. Normative commitment on the other hand relates to the feeling of obligation. This type of commitment is normally associated with employees who feel they owe the organization for being given a job when they need it most. Lastly, continuance commitment relates to terms of employment such as job contracts. In this case, leaving the current job may be very costly or troublesome (Mullins, 2001, p. 36).

The performance/turnover of workers owing to the organizational environment has become a major headache to many heads of organizations in general, and human resource managers in particular (Freund & Carmeli, 2003, p.1). This problem is mostly attributed to a lack of stability and job security for one of the most important resources in the organization. Many organizations have begun to foster the workers’ feeling of commitment to their work/occupation/career, the organization and its values and ambitions, and strong job ethics.

Models of employee commitment

The soaring rate of rotation that is typical of the modern organizational environment over the recent years has called for the need to tackle challenges and complications resulting from the turnover rate. To address the impasse related to this objective, organizational efforts have progressed in two directions. At the micro-level, organizations regard workers’ commitment to a specific occupation. The organizational focus at the micro-level is on the modification of the human resource structure to suit the current needs to achieve the operational goals. To create a balance between organizational goals and workers’ needs, both psychological contract and dynamic viewpoint of trade and stability are required to make sure that the needs of all the parties are taken care of.

Freund and Carmeli (2003) came up with a model for the five general forms of employee commitment; five major commitments reciprocate each other. These are career commitment, affirmative commitment, work ethic, occupational commitment, and organizational commitment (both continuance and affective commitment). The above five commitments are further classified into two major groups. The first category centers on commitments that affect work attitudes with no reference to the organization where the employees work. This includes work ethics, career commitment, and occupational commitment. The second category is influenced by the organization in which the employees work. They include continuance and affective organizational commitment (Furnham, 1990, p. 47).

Despite the great significance attributed to the relationships between positions at work and the results of work, there are a few types of research that have explored the link between multiple commitments and work results. Most of these studies deal with solitary variables, for instance, organizational commitment or satisfaction, and its relation to the quality of service (Bayazit & Mannix, 2003, p. 290). One of the initial models based on the idea of multiple commitments and the relationships between them was developed by Morrow (1993). Morrow’s model covered five commitments that influence the organizational outcomes and arranged them in a logical order.

According to Morrow, different forms of commitments covered in the model have reciprocal influences among themselves, and this results in a circular structure based on the affirmative work ethic being linked to occupational commitment and continuance commitment. Job attitude is related to affective commitment and continuance commitment. As a result, continuance commitment is connected to affective commitment, and both have impacts on job involvement to complete the circle (Bayazit and Mannix, 2003, p. 291).

Further studies on the above model have established that different forms of commitments have shared commitment among themselves. The most fundamental form of commitment with the minimal ability for influence and change is the affirmative work ethic (Furnham, 1990, p. 22). This form of commitment, with which the employee is hired into the organization, will remain part of him in his career life with only small changes and with no connection to different organizations the employee has worked for. Nonetheless, affirmative work ethics have an impact on other forms of commitment such as continuance commitment (Lowry, Simon & Kimberley, 2002, p. 65).

Affirmative work ethics is associated with occupational commitment because individuals have diverse perceptions of work and higher morals will influence an individual’s persistence in a given job or career. Additionally, affirmative work ethics influences continuance commitment because several relations received by an employee with affirmative work ethics are as a result of the fact that he has a working place (Aksu & Aktas, 2005, p. 482).

According to Morrow’s model, job involvement is influenced by continuance commitment and affective commitment. Job involvement will be influenced by continuance commitment on the assumption that satisfactory relations will persuade the employees to invest more in his job (Brotherton, 2003, p. 25). Affective commitment will influence job involvement given the conviction in the organizational objectives and identification with the values of the organization will push the employee to invest more in their job and therefore will increase employee participation.

Job involvement will impact the remaining three commitments (affective, continuance, and occupational commitment). Affirmative work ethic is a long-term and comparatively steady characteristic whereas the above three commitments are unstable and can change comparatively faster. Job involvement is a characteristic that is highly influenced by affirmative work ethics in such a manner that high commitment to work will increase a person’s job commitment (Brotherton, 2003, p. 25).

The main difference between Randall and Cote’s model and Morrow’s model is that in the former, job involvement tends to be a reconciliatory variable for the above mentioned three forms of commitment; job involvement is not computed by straightforwardly influencing yields, but by developing a connection and establishing the correct path among other commitment. That is to say, job involvement plays a significant part in Randall and Cote’s model. In Morrow’s model, job involvement is straightforwardly connected to the organizational results (Bateman & Strasser, 1984, p. 100).

The third system of reciprocal influence between the five different forms of commitment was introduced by Cohen (1999) in his model. Cohen’s model also used affirmative work ethics as the basic variable in his model. Affirmative work ethics in this case is the only variable that can hardly be changed in the model (Conway & Briner, 2002, p. 297). Affirmative work ethic is the fundamental commitment that influences other forms of commitment of any employee, but with no straightforward relation to the organizational outcome or commitment. This is because it takes a very long period to change this variable. Similar to the perception of Randall and Cote’s model, in this model, affirmative work ethics also can only influence job involvement and not other variables.

Cohen introduced a completely different system of context regarding the relations between different forms of commitment (De Vaus, 2001, p. 286). According to Cohen’s model, job involvement will influence occupational, affective, and continuance commitments similar to Randall and Cote’s model. However, unlike the other two models, occupational commitment also influences continuance commitment and affective commitment in this model (De Vaus, 2001, p. 286). These two forms of commitments are the most subjected and have the highest ability to change in an employee. This model uses the same five fundamental commitments described by Morrow but merges them in such a manner that they become more suitable for Randall and Cote’s model than Morrow’s model (Eisenhardt, 1999, p. 28).

Job attitude, job satisfaction, and work commitment

Schwepker (2001) defines job satisfaction as “the pleasurable emotional state resulting from the appraisal of one’s job as achieving or facilitating one’s values”. At the same time, he defined job dissatisfaction as “the unpleasant emotional state resulting from the appraisal of one’s job as frustrating or blocking the attainment of one’s values”. Herzberg, Mausner & Snyderman (1959) came up with the famous theory of job satisfaction and job attitude.

The two-factor theory posits that workers have primarily two kinds of needs namely motivation and hygiene. Hygiene factors are those necessities that can be satisfied by particular conditions such as regulation, interpersonal relations, working conditions, remunerations, among others. The theory suggests that job dissatisfaction normally arises in cases where hygienic factors do not exist. On the contrary, the supply of hygiene needs does not necessarily translate to satisfaction. It’s only the level of dissatisfaction that can be minimized (Huczynski & Buchanan, 2007, p. 1326).

According to the scale used by Minnesota Satisfaction Questionnaire (MSQ), job satisfaction is regarded as an attitude and there are three elements of workers’ attitude of job satisfaction. These are categorized as extrinsic, intrinsic, and overall corroboration factors. Intrinsic factors include ability utilization, independence, ethical values, responsibility, security, ingenuity, societal services, societal status, and diversity. On the other hand, extrinsic factors include expansion, organizational policy, compensation, acknowledgment, and supervision of human capital (Schwepker, 2001, p. 40).

Many researchers have treated work commitment and job satisfaction as independent variables. According to these researchers, work commitment and job satisfaction can be viewed from different angles (Jernigan, Beggs & Kohut, 2002, p.567). Job satisfaction is a form of reaction to a particular job or work-related subject; whereas commitment is more of a universal response. For that reason, commitment should be more consistent compared to job satisfaction in an organization (Feinstein & Vondrasek, 2001, p. 6). In their study of tourism employees, Feinstein and Vondrasek (2001) established that the level of satisfaction predicts organizational commitment. Another study conducted by Gaertner (1999, p.490) on the determinants of job satisfaction and organizational commitment, established that job satisfaction is the basis of organizational commitment.

Jernigan, Beggs & Kohut (2002, p.567) explored the role that particular determinants of job satisfaction plays in predicting different types of commitment in the organization. They established that effective commitment differed with individuals’ satisfaction within facets of the work context. In such cases, the role of the management can not be overlooked because they are the key people at the highest level responsible for moving the organizations ahead. Research conducted by Maxwell & Steele (2008) among hotel managers identified the principle issue that enhances the level of commitment in organizations. These include high and equitable remuneration, employers’ interest in their workers, a high level of the corporation in the organization, and opportunities to take part in social activities (Maxwell & Steele, 2008, p. 363).

According to Maxwell & Steele (2008, p.370) payment, strategy and recognition are extrinsic job satisfaction variables; whereas workers’ interest in terms of autonomy, security, teamwork, and trust in terms of moral values, and opportunities to take part in social activities are intrinsic job satisfaction variables. On the other hand, Bateman & Strasser (1984) posit that employee commitment can sometimes be an independent variable with job satisfaction as the resultant variable (Bateman & Strasser, 1984, p. 96). They argued that employees who are highly committed to an organization may experience a high level of satisfaction in their work.

According to Lam, Pine, & Baum (2003) highly committed employees would endeavor to meet the organization’s goals and interests. This kind of attitude will influence the budgetary planning and goals of the managers. Thus, satisfaction is proposed as an outcome instead of an antecedent. In general, the theory suggests that job satisfaction is a precursor of organizational commitment where the aspect of job satisfaction has an imperative impact on the dimension of organizational commitment (Lam, Pine, & Baum, 2003, p. 175).

In the U.S., McClurg (1999) investigated whether patterns of employee commitment existing in the normal work settings are applicable in the temporary-help service sector. She recommended that offering support to part-time workers in a non-monitory manner is the most effective way of enhancing organizational commitment. She also noted that part-time employees should be considered as a homogeneous group as there are numerous reasons for hiring them and treating them differently; this may affect their commitment to work.

Lowry, Simon & Kimberley (2002) established that part-time employees encounter varying levels of work commitment and job satisfaction about their perception of work context aspects, for instance, training, promotion, scheduling of work, organizational practices, and interpersonal relationships. They asserted that satisfaction with employment security has less effect on work commitment than satisfied with the quality of life. Brotherton (2003) established that, in the perspective of nurturing commitment and innovation among hotel workers, the most significant thing is the clarity of employment contract, rather than whether or not the contract offers a level of permanency or job security to the workers. He also found out that, in several situations, where the job contract is as specific as possible regarding job requirements, some employees performed better than other employees whose psychological contract entailed disseminate expectation, for instance, corporate citizenship.

Employee commitment is both beneficial to employers and employees (Clarke & Chen, 2007, p. 52). For individual employees, work commitment signifies a positive relationship with the organization and attaches more meaning to life; whereas, for employers, committed workers have the likelihood of enhancing quality service, reducing turnover, and reducing cases of absenteeism (Chon, Sung & Yu 1999, p. 12). Organizational commitment has also been associated with efficiency, productivity, creativity, and innovativeness among employees (Lashley & Lee-Ross, 2003, p. 16).

Allen & Meyer (1990, p. 2) are among the authors who linked work commitment and staff turnover. According to the two authors, workers who are highly committed are less likely to quit the organization. They relate turnover intention to affective commitment and a slighter degree, normative commitment. The link between continuous commitment and staff turnover intention is not consistent across studies (Chon, Sung & Yu 1999, p. 13). The same case is true regarding the measurement of actual turnover taking into consideration affective and normative commitment and not continuance commitment (Schermerhorn, Hunt & Osborn, 2003, p. 18).

Numerous approaches have been developed to assess organizational commitment (Mullins, 2001, p. 32). The most widely accepted approach is the use of the Organizational Commitment Scale (OCS) developed by Allen & Meyer (1990). OCS measures the three forms of commitment (Affective, Continuance, and Normative commitment). OCS has been widely used in a broad range of samples and situations and has been significantly reviewed by numerous researchers (Allen & Meyer, 1996, p.253).

Job satisfaction and work commitment in the tourism industry

A study conducted by Aksu & Aktas (2005) regarding job satisfaction of managers in a five-star hotel established that improved working conditions can enhance job satisfaction. Improved working conditions in this case encompass work promotions, boosting the morale of employees, financial rewards, fringe benefits and compensation, and realistic working hours. Lam, Pine & Baum. (2003) suggested in their study that training and development can assist in enhancing job satisfaction in the service industry. The study also found out that a manager in the tourism industry plays a significant role in work commitment and satisfaction. The study established that seniors or mentors in the tourism industry are likely to encourage their juniors or newcomers, thus influencing their job satisfaction and behavioral intent (Lam, Pine & Baum, 2003, p. 172).

Jernigan, Beggs & Kohut (2002) studied the relationship between workers’ service orientation and job satisfaction, organizational commitment, and workers’ intention of quitting /her job. The study covered restaurant workers and the results were as follows: consumer emphasis of service of employees are negatively correlated with job satisfaction but positively correlated with organizational commitment; support from the organization is positively correlated with job satisfaction; organizational commitment is negatively correlated with workers intention to quit his/her job (Jernigan, Beggs & Kohut et al., 2002, p. 571-572).

Lowry, Simon & Kimberley (2002) conducted a study on the effects of personal characteristics such as competitiveness, endeavor, and individual efficacy on frontline workers’ performance and job satisfaction. They suggested that unless the executive is not committed to service delivery, they should promote their career instead of job only and attract competitive and individual efficacious staff. In addition, they should promote a sound environment to reduce the chances of conflicts taking place as a result of unhealthy competition. Another study among the frontline staff found out that employees’ satisfaction is based on personal values in addition to organizational factors. As a result, satisfied workers are more likely to satisfy the clients and eventually help the organization to move forward.

Bratton & Gold (2007) recommend managers to put more focus on frontline staff to rouse job satisfaction and organizational commitment/citizenship. This is because service communicative management services promote organizational commitment and enhance job satisfaction among employees. Lastly, research conducted by Elizur et al. (1991) on food service workers and their managers, found out that remuneration, fringe benefits, working hours, welfare services, and family influences job attitude in the hotel industry. The study also established that low-ranking officers were more likely to quit than high-ranking employees.

Work values and commitment

There has been a growing interest in the study of human values and work values over the recent years. Most of these studies have paid a lot of emphasis to typology and quantification of values to its dynamic priorities; for instance, stability and change and the relations between values and attitudes, objectives, and characters (Redman & Wilkinson, 2001, p. 20). Some studies have tried to distinguish values from attitudes while others have tried to relate them.

According to Elizur et al. (1991), work values are defined as a conglomeration of attitudes and opinions with which employees can assess their jobs and work surroundings. Hertberg, Mausner & Snyderman (1959) regarded work values as a representation of motivational aspects. On the other hand, Bratton & Gold (2007) considered work values as representing affirmative work ethics.

Several studies have regarded values and work values particularly as a significant variable in describing organizational commitment (Conway & Briner, 2002, p. 280). According to Feinstein & Vondrasek (2001), commitment is an expression of one’s self and mirrors standard values that are fundamental to one’s existence as a person. Elizur et al. (1991) established a restrained relationship between work values and employee commitment. Miller et al. (2002) studied the relationship between work values and the organizational commitment of workers in the tourism industry. They established that intrinsic work values were closely more related to organizational commitment in comparison to extrinsic work values.

Work commitment among employees

In today’s contemporary society employment relationship has remarkably changed. Workers’ job status at present has developed into two types; standard work status (permanent or full-time) and non-standard work status (temporary, contractual, or part-time). Most organizations have turned to non-standard work status to provide a high level of scheduling flexibility, meet unexpected demand more efficiently, and cut down the cost of wages and salaries. In addition, the number of part-time employees is the highest in the service industry (Conway & Briner, 2002, p. 280).

Despite the growing significance of this category of workers in different sectors of the economy, there is comparatively little research on part-time employment. Part-time employees are known to differ in numbers from full-time workers, but the degree to which their work attitudes differ is less apparent (Krausz, Sagie & Bidermann, 2000, p. 2). Many studies on part-time and full-time employees have concentrated on the difference in attitudes and behaviors of these two categories of workers. However, several studies have touched on work status, work commitment, and job satisfaction. Other studies have even considered further relationships, for example, work status and organizational environment.

Studies evaluating job satisfaction across full-time and part-time workers exhibit contradicting results. Studies have found that part-time workers are more, less, and equally satisfied with their works than full-time workers (Krausz, Sagie & Bidermann, 2000, p. 6; Sinclair, Martin & Michel, 1999, p. 345). Correspondingly, there have also been contradicting results from comparisons of commitment levels between the two sets of employees. These studies have also found that part-time workers are more, less, and equally committed to their work than full-time workers (Martin & Hafer, 1995, p. 318; Sinclair, Martin & Michel, 1999, p. 345; Krausz, Sagie & Bidermann, 2000, p. 3). Many researchers who have attempted to explain these disparities have mostly applied the theories of partial inclusion and frame of reference (Krausz, Sagie & Bidermann, 2000, p. 3).

According to the theory of partial inclusion, part-time workers are argued to be partially included since they spend fewer hours in the workplace and are more involved in organizational operations than full-time workers (Conway & Briner, 2002, p. 283). In the case of frame theory, part-time workers are believed to have a diverse frame of reference from that of full-time employees (Fieldman & Doerpinghaus, 1992, p.282) given that the group and aspects of work environment chosen to analyze the two job categories always differ. For instance, some studies have found out that part-time employees put more emphasis on working hours’ flexibility than full-time workers (Fieldman & Doerpinghaus, 1992, p.284).

The two theories have also been used paradoxically in many ways to explain the difference between the two types of work status. For example, researchers have used the feeling of inclusivity to explain higher levels of job satisfaction. This is because the theories of partial inclusion and frame of reference can be manipulated to describe any empirical results since they are normally used to post rationalized results (Conway & Briner, 2002, p. 282). However, none of these theories have been tried experimentally and since they are scantily described, it is not apparent as to how they may be put into practice (Fieldman & Doerpinghaus, 1992, p.284).

Several studies have used psychological contract theory as a descriptive framework for the employment relationship and for explaining workers’ attitudes and behaviors (Sinclair, Martin & Michel, 1999, p. 340). This theory has been used in many ways to describe employment relationships, but the main construct within this theory is organizational results achieved through psychological contract achievement or contravention. Psychological contract realization is positively correlated to job satisfaction, organizational commitment, and performance. It is also found to be negatively correlated to the intention to quit the organization (Fieldman & Doerpinghaus, 1992, p.284). Therefore, the psychological contract is a very reasonable approach in understanding attitudes and behaviors of workers in different types of employment and recently it was established that it is useful in understanding contingent employees (Sinclair, Martin & Michel, 1999, p. 341).

At the organizational level, part-time employees are treated differently from full-time employees in terms of task performed, remuneration, work diversity, independence, and opportunities to grow (Fieldman & Doerpinghaus, 1992, p.287). For instance, there is enough evidence that shows that part-time employees are unlikely to be given the same promotion and training opportunities in the same organization (Lam, Pine & Baum, 2003, p. 162). Part-time employees are normally hired when the organization is experiencing a busy period and are expected to perform fairly repetitive tasks during these periods. As a result, organizations usually perceive their contribution to be dissimilar to those of full-timers in terms of effort and flexibility.

At a personal level, part-timers have different professional orientations, thus, they may make a meaningful trade-off of types of compensation with the organization to have greater flexibility and extra time to attend to other commitments (Lam, Pine & Baum, 2003, p. 164). Generally, many researchers have predicted that full-timers have soaring expectations than part-timers regarding what they are supposed to get from the organization (Sinclair, Martin & Michel, 1999, p. 345).

At the interpersonal level, part-time employees in many cases are treated differently or subjected to different assumptions by the leadership and fellow employees. Studies have established that part-time employees are mostly managed under the assumptions of theory X and stereotypes. Different treatment across work status can be seen by part-timers as interactional prejudice (Morrison & Robinson, 1997, p. 227).

Research Methodology

Introduction

The methodology is the process of instructing the ways to do the research. It is, therefore, convenient for conducting the research and for analyzing the research questions. The process of methodology insists that much care should be given to the kinds and nature of procedures to be adhered to in accomplishing a given set of procedures or an objective. This section contains the research design, study population, and the sampling techniques that will be used to collect data for the study. It also details the data analysis methods, ethical considerations, validity and reliability of data, and the limitation of the study.

Research philosophy

For this part, choosing a philosophy of research design is the choice between the positivist and the social constructionist (Easterby, Thorp & Lowe, 2008, p. 67). The positivist view shows that social worlds exist externally, and their properties are supposed to be measured objectively, rather than being inferred subjectively through feelings, intuition, or reflection. The basic beliefs for the positivist view are that the observer is independent, and science is free of value. The researchers should always concentrate on facts, look for causality and basic laws, reduce phenomenon to simplest elements, and form hypotheses and test them.

Preferred methods for positivism consist of making concepts operational and taking large samples. The view of the social constructionists is that reality is a one-sided phenomenon and can be constructed socially to gain a new significance to the people. The researchers should concentrate on meaning, look for understanding for what happened, and develop ideas about the data. Preferred methods for the social constructionists include using different approaches to establish different views of the phenomenon and small samples evaluated in-depth or over time (Saunders, Lewis & Thornhill, 2009, p. 87).

For the case of analyzing the relationship between employee commitment and job attitude on service quality, the philosophy of the social constructionists was used for carrying out the research. Because it tends to produce qualitative data, and the data are subjective since the gathering process would also be subjective due to the involvement of the researcher.

Sample selection

Population refers to the total elements that are under investigation from which the researchers conclude (Saunders, Lewis & Thornhill, 2009, p. 90). A sample is a subset of the population, i.e. it is a representation of the total population (Saunders, Lewis & Thornhill, 2009, p. 90). This study mainly used a non-probability design of sampling. In this design, not every participant in the study has an equal chance of being chosen. Non-probability sampling design does not utilize much cost and time, hence it is widely preferred. When smaller samples are used, a non-probability research design is susceptible to errors, thus, normally a larger sample size is selected. In addition, it was preferred for the number of observations to be more than the number of variables as a regression analysis was to be conducted.

Research design

In line with the main objective of this study which is to identify the relationship between employee commitment and job attitude on service quality for the elderly in the tourism industry, this study employed a cross-sectional research design. Under this design, 450 respondents were targeted. They were issued questionnaires to assist with data collection. The respondents were assured of the confidentiality of their participation.

Statistical method

Descriptive statistics and inferential statistics were both applied in the study to test the hypotheses.

Descriptive statics

Descriptive statistics is mostly applicable for analyzing numerical data. It uses distribution frequencies, distribution of variables, and measures of central tendencies (Saunders, Lewis & Thornhill, 2009, p. 93). The characteristics of the sample chosen will be used to compute frequencies and percentages for the questionnaires.

Inferential statics

Inferential statistics gives the researcher the chance to convert the data into a statistical format so that important patterns or trends are captured and analyzed accordingly (Easterby, Thorp & Lowe, 2008, p. 72). Regression analysis is utilized in inferential statistics. Regression analysis is employed to check the relationship between a dependent variable and an independent variable. It allows for the researcher to predict and forecast the expected changes to a dependent variable when one independent variable changes (Easterby, Thorp & Lowe, 2008, p. 72).

Data Collection and Instrumentation

Questionnaires were used to collect the data. The questionnaires were issued to 450 respondents who were mainly employees in the tourism industry. The participants’ responses were treated with much confidentiality.

Data Analysis Methods

Data from the survey were entered into the Excel spreadsheet program for future analysis. Data were analyzed using SPSS, ANOVA, regression, and correlation analysis.

Limitation of data collection methods

There have been a lot of concerns on additional budgetary expenses for the collection of the data, regardless of whether the gathered data is genuine or not and whether there may be an explicit conclusion when interpreting and analyzing the data. In addition, some employees were reluctant to offer some information they deemed confidential and unsafe in the hands of their competitors. This posed a great challenge to the research as the researcher had to take a longer time to find employees who were willing to give out adequate information.

Validity and reliability

Validity of the data represents the data integrity and it connotes that the data is accurate and much consistent. Validity has been explained as a descriptive evaluation of the association between actions and interpretations and empirical evidence deduced from the data. More precaution was taken especially when a comparison was made between employee commitment and job attitude. Employee motivation may differ from business to business and may not be identical in an industry. Reliability of the data is the outcome of a series of actions that commences with the proper explanation of the issues to be resolved. This may push on to a clear recognition of the yardsticks concerned. It contains the target samples to be chosen, the proper sampling strategy and the sampling methods to be employed.

Findings, Data Analysis, and Interpretation

Introduction

This section covers the analysis of the data, presentation, and interpretation. The results were analyzed using SPPS, ANOVA, regression, and correlation analysis.

Descriptive statistics

Biographical information

237 respondents (52.6%) of the expected 450 respondents completed the questionnaires. The respondents had varied age distributions which are summarized in Figure 4.1 below.

Age distribution of respondents.
Figure 4.1 Age distribution of respondents.

The figure indicates that many respondents were from the age group 40-49 years (43%, n=101). This was followed by respondents in the age group 30-39 years (24%, n=57). The third-largest age group was 50-59 years which had 55 respondents (23%). The age group under 30 years had the lowest number of respondents (10%, n=24).

An analysis of the gender of the total respondents was made. The gender distribution is summarized in Figure 4.2 below.

Gender distribution.
Figure 4.2 Gender distribution.

The figure indicates that many respondents (60%, n=142) were female, whereas only 40% (n=95) were male employees.

An analysis of the race of the respondents was undertaken. The race distribution is summarized in Figure 4.3 below.

Race distribution.
Figure 4.3 Race distribution.

The figure indicates that a majority of the employees were Coloured (53%, n=126). This was followed by Blacks (18%, n=42), Whites (16%, n=39), and Asian employees (13%, n=30) in that order.

An analysis of the employee qualification was made. The qualification level is summarized in Figure 4.4 below.

Employee qualification distribution.
Figure 4.4 Employee qualification distribution.

The figure shows that many employees (54%, n=128) had Bachelors degrees. This was followed by employees who had Higher diplomas (18%, n=42), Diploma holders (16%, n=39), and Masters’s degree holders (12%, n=28) in that order.

An analysis of the employment category of the respondents was done. The employment category is summarized in Figure 4.5 beloe.

Employment category distribution.
Figure 4.5 Employment category distribution.

The figure shows that a majority of the respondents (55%, n=130) were employed permanently. This was followed by 89 respondents (37%) who were temporarily employed. Only 8% (n=18) of the respondents were employed on contract.

Summary of descriptive statistics

Descriptive statistics using the measures of central tendencies were computed from the results gathered from the questionnaires. The questionnaires focused on employee commitment and job attitude.

Results for job attitude

Respondents who were majorly employees were issued questionnaires to express their job attitudes. The summary of results regarding job attitude is summarized in Appendix 2. The results show that from the sample of 237 respondents, the mean for the job attitude is 113.20 with a standard deviation of 14.30. From this computation, it can be deduced that many employees still have a lower attitude to their jobs; this is indicated by the lower value of the standard deviation.

A low attitude to the job indicates that the level of satisfaction is also low. In addition, the calculated arithmetic means for job environment, remuneration, administration, and job progress are less than the calculated arithmetic means for work colleagues. About the fact that an average level of satisfaction is represented by a mean of 36, then it is evident that many employees have a lower attitude to work because they are not satisfied with the job environment, remuneration, administration, and job progress. Employees were greatly satisfied by their colleagues (Mean=38.24, SD=3.13) than the job environment (Mean=32.12, SD=6.30), administration (Mean=27.20, SD=5.30), job progress (Mean=24.35, SD=4.22) and remunerations (Mean=23.10, SD=4.80).

Results for employee commitment

Respondents who were majorly employees were issued questionnaires to express their level of organizational commitment. The summary of results regarding employee commitment is summarized in Appendix 3. The results show that the total organizational commitment has a mean of 55.43 and a standard deviation of 9.24. About the fact that an average level of employee attitude is represented by a mean of 60, it is evident that quite a several employees portrayed a lower level (below average) of organizational commitment. In addition, affective commitment (mean=20.12, SD=3.02) stipulates that the employees did not have enough faith in the values and beliefs of the organization. Normative commitment (mean=22.41, SD=5.02) stipulates that employees were reluctant to represent the organization in transacting business. Continuance commitment (mean=17.02, SD=7.41) stipulates that employees feel shy to continue working for the organization.

Inferential statistics

The results of inferential statistics were used to establish the relationship that exists between job commitment and job attitude among employees; in addition, inferential statistics were used to ascertain the connection between employee commitment, job attitude, and provision of quality service. The results are summarized in the Appendices 4 to 9:

The results in Appendix 4 show that there are major correlations between remunerations and job attitude (r = 0.598, p < 0.01), job progress and job attitude (r = 0.585, p < 0.01), work colleagues and job attitude (r = 0.386, p < 0.01) and between administration and job attitude (r = 0.268, p < 0.05). There was no significant relationship between the nature of the job and job satisfaction (r = 0.113, p > 0.05).

The results in Appendix 5 confirm that the most significant relationship subsists between sex and job attitude (r = 0.67, p < 0.01). In addition, there was a strong correlation between the age of respondents and job attitude (r = 0.50, p < 0.01). There was also a significant relationship between job status and job attitude (r = 0.45, p < 0.01), and job level and job attitude (r = 0.37, p < 0.01). Lastly, there was a strong relationship between education and job attitude (r = 0.28, p < 0.05).

The results in Appendix 6 show that there is a slight relationship between affective commitment and job attitude (r = 0.342, p < 0.01). There was also a strong relationship between normative commitment and job attitude (r = 0.436, p < 0.01). Furthermore, there was a strong relationship between continuance commitment and job attitude (r = 0.701, p < 0.01). There was a significant relationship between organizational commitment and job attitude (r = 0.434, p < 0.01).

The results in Appendix 7 show that there is a significant relationship between sex and employee commitment (r = 0.702, p < 0.01). There was also a strong correlation between the age of respondents and employee commitment (r = 0.560, p < 0.01). There was also a strong relationship between job status and employee commitment (r = 0.420, p < 0.01), and job level and employee commitment (r = 0.552, p < 0.01). However, there was no significant relationship between the educational level of employees and their job commitment (r = 0.132, p > 0.05).

The results in Appendix 8 are for the biographical variables regressed against job attitude. Appendix 9 shows the ANOVA Analysis. The result found out that the multiple R-value is 0.602. The R-Square value of 0.361 indicates that 36.1% of the variables explained the dependent variable. The F-statistic (5.295) is statistically significant at 0.01 level; meaning that the demographic variables significantly enlighten 36.1% of the variance in job attitude. Job-status is the best predictor of job attitude as it has a beta coefficient value of -0.3189 and is statistically significant at the 0.01 level. In addition, sex, age, and job level are statistically significant at 0.05. The negative value of the beta coefficient of job level indicates that employees in higher positions of employment have a lower attitude towards their job. In the same manner, the negative beta value of the age coefficient shows that older employees have a lower attitude towards their job.

The results of Appendix 10 are for the biographical variables regressed against employee commitment. Appendix 11 shows the ANOVA Analysis. The result found out that the multiple R-value is 0.622. The R-Square value of 0.390 indicates that 39% of the variables explained the dependent variable. The F-statistic (5.357) is statistically significant at 0.01 level; meaning that the demographic variables significantly enlighten 39% of the variance in employee commitment.

Furthermore, job status had the highest beta-value, followed by sex, age, and job level; all these variables statistically explain the variance in employee commitment. The negative beta value for job status indicates that employees who have been in the organization for long are less committed.

Summary of the Findings, Conclusions, and Recommendations

Introduction

This chapter presents the summary of the findings and a discussion of the results by the objectives of this study. Finally, the chapter contains the conclusions and recommendations.

Summary of findings

The main objectives of this study were: to investigate the relationship between employee commitment and job attitude of performance on service quality for the elderly in the tourism industry. The objectives were satisfied by collecting and analyzing pertinent data using various statistical techniques. In line with the objectives, the following hypotheses were tested: biographical factors do not affect the level of employees’ commitment and job attitude in an organization; job motivation and satisfaction have no impact on employee commitment and job attitude; there is no relationship between job commitment and job attitude among employees; and there is no connection among job attitude, job commitment and provision of quality service. The study established biographical factors have an impact on both employee commitment and job attitude. The study also established a relationship between job attitude and employee commitment towards the delivery of quality service.

Conclusion

Job attitude and employee commitment are the basis for delivering quality service. The study established that biographical characteristics of the employees in terms of age, gender, job level, education level, and job status affect job attitude and the employee commitment to work. The study established that in many cases, employees who have stayed longer in the job develop a low attitude towards their jobs; this has affected their commitment to work. Older employees also tend to assume a lower job attitude because of many years of working in the same organization at the same level.

The study has revealed that motivation is the key to the employees’ success in the workplace. The more motivation an employee gets, the more committed he becomes to the organization. Motivation is, thus, necessary to foster a good job attitude for the workers. An organization that does not motivate its employees is bound to lag in terms of competition in the market. Many potential employees are attracted by the motivating elements that exist in a company. Motivation also helps to retain the existing good workers that the organization has.

Recommendation

Based on the findings of this study, the study emphasizes the need to motivate employees to improve their work commitment and job attitude. For an organization to be successful, the needs of both the organization and the employees must be satisfied; the management should establish a cohesive relationship with the employees to steer the organization forward. Employees have a role to play by adhering to the setup rules and regulations of the organization.

On the other hand, the employees anticipate favorable working conditions in terms of a good salary, good treatment, job security, and enough attention from the managers. Both the organization and employees expect each other in addition to the black and white employment contract. The needs and anticipations of both the employers and the employees differ from one organization to another. It is, therefore, of the essence for the organization to consider the anticipations of the employees to come up with a better way to motivate them.

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Appendices

Appendix 1: Questionnaire

This is an academic research study and your participation is voluntary. Information provided will be confidentially and individual data will be reported. THANK YOU! ———————————

Part A

  • Are you a part-time or a full-time employee?
  • Are you satisfied with your work?
    • Not satisfied
    • Less Satisfied
    • Moderately Satisfied
    • Very satisfied.
  • Do you prefer working as a part-time or full-time employee?
  • What kind of relationship do you have with your superiors?
  • How do you rate your work conditions?
    • Bad []
    • Not sure []
    • Good []
    • Excellent []

Part B

The following 17 statements describe your degree of attachment and loyalty to the organization you are now employed with. Please respond by indicating the degree to which each of the statements applies to you using the following scale:

1
Strongly
Disagree
2
Disagree
3
Slightly
Disagree
4
Neither
Agree of
Disagree
5
Slightly
Agree
6
Agree
7
Strongly
Agree

There is no right or wrong answer. Write the number that best indicates to what extent each of the statements is true or not true in the parenthesis provided at the end of each statement

  1. I would be very happy to spend the rest of my career in this organization [ ]
  2. I enjoy discussing my work with people outside it [ ]
  3. I feel as if this Hotel’s problems are my own [ ]
  4. I think I could easily become as attached to another Hotel as I am to this one [ ]
  5. I do not feel like “a member of the family” at this Hotel [ ]
  6. I do not feel “emotionally attached” to this Hotel [ ]
  7. This Hotel has a great deal of personal meaning for me [ ]
  8. I do not feel a strong sense of belonging to this Hotel [ ]
  9. I am not afraid of what might happen if I quit my job at this Hotel without having Another one lined up [ ]
  10. It would be very hard for me to leave my job at this Hotel right now even if I wanted to [ ]
  11. Too much of life would be disrupted if I decided to leave my job at this Hotel right now [ ]
  12. It would not be too costly for me to leave my job at this Hotel shortly [ ]
  13. Right now, staying with my job at this Hotel is a matter of necessity as much as desire [ ]
  14. I believe I have too few options to consider should I decide to leave my job at this Hotel [ ]
  15. One of the few negative consequences of leaving my job at this Hotel, would be the scarcity of available alternative elsewhere [ ]
  16. One of the major reasons I continue to work for this Hotel is that leaving would require considerable personal sacrifice; another place may not match the overall benefits I have here [ ]
  17. If I had not already put so much of myself into this organization, I would consider Working elsewhere [ ]

Part C

Biographical Characteristics
  • What is your Sex?
    • Male
    • Female
  • What is your Job Title?
  • Do you supervise others?
    • Yes
    • No
  • How long have you worked for the Hotel?
    • _______________ Years ____________ Months
  • How long have you worked for your Immediate Supervisor?
    • _______________ Years ____________ Months
  • What is your Age Group?
    • Under 30
    • 40-49
    • 20-39
    • 50-59
  • What is your highest level of Education?
    • Diploma
    • Higher Diploma
    • Bachelors Degree
    • Masters Degree
  • What is your Race?
    • White
    • Black
    • Asian
    • Colored
    • White

Appendix 2: Descriptive statistics for job attitude

Mean Standard deviation
Job attitude 113.20 14.30
Job environment 32.12 6.30
Remuneration 23.10 4.80
Administration 27.20 5.30
Job progress 24.35 4.22
Colleagues 38.24 3.13

Appendix 3: Descriptive statistics for employee commitment

Mean Standard deviation
Affective commitment 20.12 3.02
Normative commitment 22.41 5.02
Continuance commitment 17.02 7.41
Organizational commitment 55.43 9.24

Appendix 4: Pearson correlation matrix for job attitude

Job attitude
Pearson correlation Sig (2-tailed)
Job environment 0.131 0.396
Remuneration 0.598 0.000**
Administration 0.268 0.042*
Job progress 0.585 0.000**
Colleagues 0.386 0.003**

Note:

  1. * = p<0.05
  2. ** = p<0.01

Appendix 5: Pearson correlation between job attitude and biographical variables

Job attitude
Sex 0.67**
Age 0.50**
Job-status 0.45**
Education level 0.28*
Job level 0.37**

Note:

  1. * = p<0.05
  2. ** = p<0.01

Appendix 6: Pearson correlation between job attitude and employee commitment

Job attitude
Pearson Correlation Sig (2-tailed)
Affective commitment 0.342 0.021*
Normative commitment 0.436 0.002**
Continuance commitment 0.701 0.000**
Organizational commitment 0.472 0.000**

Note:

  1. * = p<0.05
  2. ** = p<0.01

Appendix 7: Pearson correlation between employee commitment and biographical variables

Employee commitment
Pearson correlation Sig (2-tailed)
Sex 0.720 0.00**
Age 0.560 0.00**
Job-status 0.420 0.00**
Education level 0.132 0.05
Job level 0.552 0.00**

Note:

  1. * = p<0.05
  2. ** = p<0.01

Appendix 8: Multiple regression results: job attitude and biographical variables

Multiple R 0.602
R Square 0.361
Adjusted R Square 0.332
Standard Error 12.961
F 5.295
Sig F 0.00**
Variable Beta T Sig T
Age -0.2164 -0.2670 0.03969*
Sex -0.2684 -2.4021 0.0108*
Job-status -0.3189 -3.0942 0.0029**
Education level -0.1537 -1.2951 0.0701
Job level -0.1806 -1.1092 0.0229*

Note:

  1. * = p<0.05
  2. ** = p<0.01

Appendix 9: ANOVA Analysis results: job attitude and biographical variables

ANOVA-Analysis of Variance
Alpha0.05 F-table3.874
ANOVA Table
Sources SS df MS F-stat P-value
Between 138 4 68.7 5.295 0.04274
Error 192.5 12 18.3
Total Error 330.5 16

Appendix 10: Multiple regression results: employee commitment and biographical variables

Multiple R 0.622
R Square 0.390
Adjusted R Square 0.323
Standard Error 0.409
F 5.357
Sig F 0.00**
Variable Beta T Sig T
Age -0.2793 -2.7052 0.0039**
Sex -0.3522 -3.1921 0.0000**
Job-status -0.4692 -4.3042 0.0000**
Education level -0.1002 -0.9832 0.5302
Job level 0.1192 -1.2042 0.0020**

Note:

  1. * = p<0.05
  2. ** = p<0.01

Appendix 11: ANOVA Analysis results: employee commitment and biographical variables

ANOVA-Analysis of Variance
Alpha0.05 F-table3.874
ANOVA Table
Sources SS df MS F-stat P-value
Between 144 4 72.6 5.357 0.04571
Error 196.5 12 16.8
Total Error 340.5 16
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