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The psychological contract, organisational commitment and job satisfaction of temporary staff

David J. McDonald (Manchester School of Management, UMIST, Manchester, UK)
Peter J. Makin (Manchester School of Management, UMIST, Manchester, UK)

Leadership & Organization Development Journal

ISSN: 0143-7739

Article publication date: 1 March 2000

Abstract

The proportion of the workforce on temporary contracts of employment is increasing, as organisations use non‐permanent staff as a flexible resource. Rousseau and Wade‐Benzoni suggested such temporary staff have a different psychological contract with the organisation than their permanent counterparts. Temporary staff, it is argued, will have a transactional contract, with the emphasis upon the economic elements of the contract while permanent staff will have a more relational contract, involving commitment to the organisation, and an interest in a satisfying job. These differences, it is argued, will influence staff attitudes and behaviour. The article tests these suggestions on employees of a large holiday sector organisation. The results present a consistent picture, at variance with the above suggestions. The levels of relational and transactional contracts of permanent and temporary staff did not differ significantly. In addition they had higher, rather than lower, levels of job satisfaction and commitment to the organisation.

Keywords

Citation

McDonald, D.J. and Makin, P.J. (2000), "The psychological contract, organisational commitment and job satisfaction of temporary staff", Leadership & Organization Development Journal, Vol. 21 No. 2, pp. 84-91. https://doi.org/10.1108/01437730010318174

Publisher

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MCB UP Ltd

Copyright © 2000, MCB UP Limited