Does quality drive employee satisfaction in the UK learning sector?

Andrew Robson, Jenny Owen, David Yarrow

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

    8 Citations (Scopus)


    The purpose of this paper is to provide empirical evidence to assess the nature and extent of the link between employee satisfaction and organisational performance. This paper examines the link between staff satisfaction and organisational performance, presenting findings from 21 colleges of Further Education that have participated in both a survey of staff satisfaction (covering over 2,600 staff from these colleges) and in a diagnostic benchmarking exercise using the “Learning PROBE” methodology. The results suggest that whilst each of the measured aspects of work are regarded as being important by a majority of survey respondents, the level of “satisfaction” displayed in each of these attributes is indicated by only a minority of those surveyed. The findings support the existence of a link between staff satisfaction and organisational excellence. Staff satisfaction levels are most strongly associated with the leadership and service processes indices, and even more so with the overall organisational diagnosis. This suggests that colleges that are implementing “good practices” covering a range of managerial aspects, and who are achieving corresponding organisational results, are likely to be closer to satisfying their staff. Practices relating to people, performance management and organizational results also show association with staff's satisfaction gap, although not as significantly as above. The results suggest an holistic approach to implementing business practices appears to be more effective than concentrating only on deploying good practices in only a single area of the managerial process. The value of the paper is to the UK Further Education Sector in that it identifies those organisational practices, which improved, can in combination address to some extent the work satisfaction levels of their employees.
    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)465-484
    JournalInternational Journal of Quality & Reliability Management
    Issue number5
    Publication statusPublished - Jan 2005


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