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Keywords:

  • work engagement;
  • job resources;
  • cross-lagged;
  • strategic alignment;
  • reciprocal effects

Summary

This study advances the limited research on work alignment and work engagement by investigating how perceived alignment of job tasks and organizational strategic priorities (strategic alignment) influences work engagement. Measures of job control and work social support were also included to enable comparisons between strategic alignment and other well-established job resources. A total of 1011 employees of an Australian state police service responded to three electronic, self-report surveys. A reciprocal model was assessed over three waves of data, with varying time lags: 18 (Time 1 to Time 2), 12 (Time 2 to Time 3), and 30 months (Time 1 to Time 3). Longitudinal, reciprocal relationships were observed for work engagement and job control, strategic alignment, and colleague support. Work engagement also predicted supervisor support over time (reverse effect). This study demonstrated that, in addition to job resources, perceived alignment of job tasks and organizational priorities plays an important role in maintaining high levels of work engagement over time. Copyright © 2013 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.