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Employee involvement climate and climate strength: A study of employee attitudes and organizational effectiveness in UK hospitals

Janine Bosak (DCU Business School, Dublin City University, Dublin, Ireland)
Jeremy Dawson (Sheffield University Management School, University of Sheffield, Sheffield, UK)
Patrick Flood (DCU Business School, Dublin City University, Dublin, Ireland)
Riccardo Peccei (Kings College London, London, UK)

Journal of Organizational Effectiveness: People and Performance

ISSN: 2051-6614

Article publication date: 13 March 2017

Abstract

Purpose

Addressing the continuing productivity challenge, the purpose of this paper is to analyze data from the National Health Service on employee involvement (EI) in order to gain critical insights into how employees’ shared perception of EI in organizational decision making (i.e. EI climate) might address two persistent issues: how to enhance positive staff attitudes and improve organizational performance. In doing so, the authors respond to recent calls for more multilevel research and extend previous research on EI climate by attending to both EI climate level and EI climate strength.

Design/methodology/approach

Data from 4,702 employees nested in 33 UK hospitals were used to test the moderating role of EI climate strength in the cross-level EI climate level employee level-attitudes relationship and in the organizational-level EI climate-organizational effectiveness relationship.

Findings

The results of the multilevel analyses showed that EI climate level was positively associated with individual-level employee attitudes (i.e. job satisfaction, organizational commitment). Further the results of the hierarchical regression analysis and the ordinal logistic regression analysis showed that EI climate level was also related to organizational effectiveness (i.e. lower outpatient waiting times, higher performance quality). In addition, both analyses demonstrated the moderating role of EI climate strength, in that the positive impact of EI climate level on employee attitudes and organizational effectiveness was more marked in the presence of a strong climate compared to a weak EI climate.

Practical implications

By creating and maintaining a positive and strong climate for involvement, hospital managers can tackle the productivity challenge that UK hospitals and health care institutions more generally are currently facing while improving the attitudes of their employees who are critical in the transformative process and ultimately underpin the organizational success.

Originality/value

This is the first study which provides evidence that favorable and consistent collective recognition of EI opportunities by staff contributes to enhance both employee attitudes and hospital performance. Results highlight the role of EI climate strength and underscore its importance in future research and practice.

Keywords

Acknowledgements

The authors would like to thank Denise Rousseau, Susan Taylor, Steven Kilroy and Jonas Lang for their helpful comments on earlier versions of this manuscript. A previous version of this manuscript also won the best paper award in the Organizational Behavior Track at the 18th Irish Academy of Management Conference.

Citation

Bosak, J., Dawson, J., Flood, P. and Peccei, R. (2017), "Employee involvement climate and climate strength: A study of employee attitudes and organizational effectiveness in UK hospitals", Journal of Organizational Effectiveness: People and Performance, Vol. 4 No. 1, pp. 18-38. https://doi.org/10.1108/JOEPP-10-2016-0060

Publisher

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Emerald Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2017, Emerald Publishing Limited