Previous studies on job characteristics have been performed mainly in Western contexts. More empirical evidence is needed to understand the important job characteristics of positive job outcomes in a non‐Western context. Therefore, this research has two objectives: to assess the impact of five job characteristics on work attitudes and behaviors in the UAE, and to test the mediating impact of distributive justice on the job characteristics‐work outcomes relationship.
The study reports responses of 350 employees from five large organizations operating in Dubai. Data were collected on a structured questionnaire containing standards scales of job characteristics, job satisfaction, organizational commitment, turnover intentions, distributive justice, and some demographic variables. After testing scales reliability and validity, the proposed linear relationships were tested using a series of separate hierarchical regression analyses. Proposed mediation hypotheses were tested using Baron and Kenny's recommendations.
Consistent with studies conducted in a Western context, the study showed that skill variety and feedback have functional impacts on job satisfaction, organizational commitment and turnover intentions. Contrary to Western studies, the study reported that task identity and task significance have functional effects on work attitudes and behaviors. Autonomy also showed unexpected positive relationship with turnover intentions. Additionally, distributive justice mediates some of the relationships between job characteristics and work outcomes.
The limitations of common method bias and cross‐sectional data are discussed in the light of implications for future research. Nevertheless, the results provide new insights on the influence of job characteristics on work outcomes in a non‐Western context of the UAE. Also, the study reported evidence for the mediating impact of distributive justice on the job characteristics‐work outcomes relationship.
The study has implications for enhancing work behaviors and attitudes. In general, enhancing certain job characteristics can result in higher‐level employee outcomes. Also, managers should improve some of the contextual factor (i.e. distributive justice) in order to enhance the impact of job characteristics on work outcomes.
The study is considered to be one of the first to examine the job characteristics‐work outcomes relationship in a non‐western context of the UAE. Also, it is among the first studies to test the role of distributive justice as a mediator for the job characteristics‐work outcome relationship.
Abu Elanain, H.M. (2009), "Job characteristics, work attitudes and behaviors in a non‐western context: Distributive justice as a mediator", Journal of Management Development, Vol. 28 No. 5, pp. 457-477. https://doi.org/10.1108/02621710910955985
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