Disaggregating Job Satisfaction: Effects of Perceived Demands, Control, and Support

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Our purpose was to inductively examine how employees' perceptions of stressor and resource work characteristics relate to nine distinct facets of job satisfaction, in accordance with the demand-control (-support) [JDC(S)] theory. Job satisfaction is a multidimensional construct composed of various facets that differ greatly from one other. However, most stress studies have examined job satisfaction at the global level. This may be problematic for managers looking to redesign the workplace to increase employee job satisfaction based on established recommendations from previous research. Data were obtained from employees of a public sector human services organization that provides services to protect children from neglect and other forms of abuse (n = 343). A series of t tests for dependent correlations determined facet-level differences in satisfaction with demand and resource work characteristics. We found different patterns of correlations across facets for all seven demand, control, and support workplace characteristics. Those re-balancing types of demands, control, and support for workplace redesign should not presume consistent effects on all aspects of satisfaction with work. By doing so, expected positive outcomes may fail to materialize, perhaps to the detriment of workplace redesign as a whole in the minds of management. A more detailed approach to workplace redesign is recommended. This is the first study which adopts the JDC(S) framework to examine job satisfaction at the facet level. Our findings shed new light on how workplace characteristics relate to different aspects of satisfaction.