THE VALIDITY OF THE JOB CHARACTERISTICS MODEL: A REVIEW AND META-ANALYSIS

Authors


  • This research was conducted as part of the doctoral dissertation of the first author submitted to the Institute of Labor and Industrial Relations, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. The authors wish to thank Greg Oldham, Bob Linn, and two anonymous reviewers for providing comments on earlier drafts of this manuscript.

Requests for reprints should be sent to Yitzhak Fried, Department of Management and Organization Sciences, Wayne State University, Detroit, Michigan 48202.

Abstract

The validity of Hackman and Oldham's Job Characteristics Model was assessed by conducting a comprehensive review of nearly 200 relevant studies on the model as well as by applying meta-analytic procedures to a large portion of the data. The evidence indicated that the available correlational results are reasonably valid in light of the issues examined. Results tended to support the multidimensionality of job characteristics, but there was less agreement on the exact number of dimensions. The corrected correlational results of the meta-analysis indicated that job characteristics related both to psychological and behavioral outcomes. Concerning psychological states, the results tended to support their mediating (e.g., intervening) role between job characteristics and personal outcomes. The pattern of correlations between the job characteristics and psychological states was less supportive of the model. Meta-analytic results demonstrated that most of the cross-study variance was due to statistical artifacts. True variance across studies was found for the job characteristics-performance relationship, however, and subsequent analyses suggested that growth-need strength moderates this relationship. Implications for potential revisions of the model and for practice are discussed.

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