Organization-led work redesign interventions and work performance: A systematic review
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The aim of this study is to review the role, effectiveness, and quality of organization-led work redesign interventions, focusing especially on their impact on work performance and productivity. We review the literature using a framework (see Figure 1) designed to organise the studies and provide a guide for future research. To our knowledge, no previous review has focused on work performance and productivity as outcomes of organisational-led work redesign interventions, yet boosting performance is a primary concern of organisations keen to be competitive in local, national and global markets. At the same time, work design theory has been identified as one of the most practically useful and theoretically strong models in our field, so it is important to understand whether, and how, interventions designed to improve work design actually affect performance as theorized. Our review contributes in two key ways. First, we help to establish whether there is a causal link between work design and performance / productivity. Previous reviews of work design research tend to suggest these relationships are modest (e.g., Fried & Ferris, 1987; Humphrey, Morgeson, and Nahrgang, 2007). Crucially, intervention designs offer a stronger test of theory, and particularly causality, than cross-sectional designs or longitudinal designs that assess relationships across time without manipulating variables (Higgins & Green, 2011). A recent review suggested that organisational-led work redesign interventions affect performance, however, only four such interventions were considered, so any general conclusion is premature (Daniels, Gedliki, Watson, Semkina & Vaughn, 2017). Second, we conduct a narrative synthesis, which allows us to obtain insight into the nuanced effects, processes and mechanisms across an heterogeneous set of studies with a common focus on work design affecting performance.
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