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Revisiting the moderating role of culture between job characteristics and job satisfaction: a multilevel analysis of 33 countries

Manli Gu (School of Management and Marketing, Faculty of Business and Law, Taylor's University–Lakeside Campus, Subang Jaya, Malaysia)
John Horng Li Tan (Organization Transformation − Human Capital Consulting, Deloitte Consulting Southeast Asia (SEA), Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia)
Muslim Amin (School of Management and Marketing, Faculty of Business and Law, Taylor's University–Lakeside Campus, Subang Jaya, Malaysia)
Md Imtiaz Mostafiz (Sheffield Business School, Sheffield Hallam University, Sheffield, UK)
Ken Kyid Yeoh (Nottingham University Business School, University of Nottingham–Malaysia Campus, Semenyih, Malaysia)

Employee Relations

ISSN: 0142-5455

Article publication date: 13 July 2021

Issue publication date: 1 March 2022

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Abstract

Purpose

This paper aims to address how national culture moderates the relationship between job characteristics and job satisfaction.

Design/methodology/approach

The authors examine the most recent data collected from the International Social Survey Programme (ISSP) in 2015 from a group of 33 countries. Hofstede's cultural model is used to represent and measure national culture.

Findings

One of the most significant findings from the authors’ two-level regression analysis is that having an interesting job contributes more to job satisfaction in individualistic countries than in collectivist countries. The authors also find that the newly introduced cultural dimension indulgence vs restraint has some significant moderating effect on the relationship between job security, salary, the perceived interest of a job and job satisfaction. Job security also seems to contribute less to job satisfaction in societies that are long-term oriented.

Practical implications

This study provides further support for a more careful, nuanced examination of job motivation theories. Multinational companies should understand the needs of their employees and diversify their compensation packages accordingly. More attention should be paid to job design in individualistic or indulgent-oriented countries to create a satisfying job experience.

Originality/value

The authors examine the most recent data from ISSP and extend the literature by incorporating two additional cultural dimensions from Hofstede's model as moderators.

Keywords

Citation

Gu, M., Li Tan, J.H., Amin, M., Mostafiz, M.I. and Yeoh, K.K. (2022), "Revisiting the moderating role of culture between job characteristics and job satisfaction: a multilevel analysis of 33 countries", Employee Relations, Vol. 44 No. 1, pp. 70-93. https://doi.org/10.1108/ER-03-2020-0099

Publisher

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Emerald Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2021, Emerald Publishing Limited

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