Social information processing and job characteristics.

A simultaneous test of two theories with implications for job satisfaction


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This study simultaneously tested 2 theories that attempt to explain differences in job satisfaction: job characteristics theory (Hackman & Oldham, 1976) and social information processing theory (Salancik & Pfeffer, 1978). The theories were tested using data collected from the civilian employees of the public works division at a U.S. military base. The results indicated that individuals' social environments had significant effects upon their attitudes. Multiple social networks were used to operationalize individuals' social environments. The results also suggested that job characteristics had an independent main effect upon job satisfaction, in addition to the effects of the social environment. Based on prior research, employees' past experience and self-monitoring were tested as moderators of the effects of the social environment, and growth need strength was tested as a moderator of the effects of job characteristics upon job satisfaction. Only self-monitoring was found to have a significant moderating effect on the relationship between information from the social environment and job satisfaction, and growth need strength had no significant moderating effect.