The Effect of Working Environment On Employees Performance: The case of MTN Cameroon Buea Municipality
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Work environment plays an important role in an organization. Nowadays employees may have a large number of working alternatives, then the environment in workplace becomes a critical factor for accepting and/or keeping the jobs, and Most of the problems faced by employees are related to working environment. The study aimed to assess the impact of working environment on employees’ performance. The main objective of this study was to explore the impact of working environment on performance of employees of MTN Cameroon Buea municipality. Specifically, the study sought to; determine the contribution of performance feedback on employees, to assess the physical working environment that react towards employees performance, and finally to examine whether supervisor support affects employees performance.
The Abraham Maslow hierarchy of needs and Frederick Herzberg’s two factor theories were used. The research design used was the survey research design. Target population consists of 150 MTN employees, while the sample size is 100 employees. The study findings indicate that, organization working environment had an impact on members as far as respondents are concerned. The study also revealed that employees will improve their performance if the problems identified during the research are tackled by the management. The problems are flexibility of working environment, work noise distraction, supervisor’s interpersonal relationship with subordinates, presence of job aid, the use of performance feedback and improvement of work incentives in the organization so as to motivate employees to perform their job.
In conclusion based on the findings the study recommended that, the organization needs to have periodic meetings with employees to air their grievances to the management and serve as a motivating factor to the employees and Management.
Every organization is required to monitor its internal and external environment for the attainment of specific goals. Organization is the structured entity established to attain specific objectives by blending of different types of resources (Ahmad, 2010:1-3). Internal environment of the corporate entities is important for the successful survival. The economic conditions and competitive environment have compelled organizations to concentrate on improving employee performance. Work environment is the combination of factors (social support, physical working conditions, job characteristics, training and development and communication process) that influence work. The social support means the help that an individual receives from his/her co-workers, supervisor and colleagues to perform his/her work effectively. It reveals the structure of relationships (Greenhaus and Parasuraman, 1994: 13). It can be divided into two categories such as the work related social support and the personal social support. Giga and Hoel (2003:45). Believe that the mergers and acquisitions lead to economic interdependence due to technological changes, globalization and organizational work environment.
Employee performance is multidimensional and essential for organizational success (Campbell, 1990; Dyne et al., 2002:20-23). Job performance is the result of three factors: skill, effort and the nature of work conditions. The skills include knowledge, abilities and competencies the employee brings to the job; effort is the degree of motivation the employee puts forth toward getting the job done and the nature of work conditions is the degree of accommodation of these conditions in facilitating the employee’s productivity (Kazmi et al., 2008:25). The current study contributes to the existing body of knowledge by exploring employees’ performance in different cultural setting. It aims to investigate the effect of work environment on performance of employees working in the telecommunication sector of Pakistan. It is reported that organizational commitment mediates the relationship between age and work performance (Iun and Huang, 2007:25). The organizational performance could be the outcome of employees’ positive behavioral change that may be linked with incentive programs (Feldman and Landsman, 2007:50). It may create greater feelings of belongingness, esteem, satisfaction and commitment (Green and Heywood, 2007:100-102).
Conducive work environment including friendly human resource policies may enhance employee productivity, organizational commitment and overall performance (Chiang and Birtch 2010:13). The success of any organization is closely tied to the job performance of its employees. The quality of the employees’ workplace environment impacts on their motivation level and hence performance (Heath, 2006:32). When employees have the desire, physically and emotionally to work, then their performance shall be increased (Boles et al., 2004:11). They also stated that having a proper workplace environment helps in reducing the number of absenteeism and as a result can increase the performance in today’s competitive and dynamic business world. The working environment that are set in place impacts employees’ morale; productivity; engagement both positively and negatively (Chandrasekhar, 2011:11-15). She adds that factors of workplace environment play an important role towards the employees’ performance. The factors of workplace environment give an immense impact to the employees’ performance either towards the negative outcomes or the
Positive outcomes. The study is focused on the Two Factor Theory (Herzberg, 1986:51). Herzberg came to a conclusion that the aspects of the work environment that satisfy employees are different from the aspects that dissatisfy them any organizations achievements are strongly linked to its employees work performance. The quality of the workplace setting of the staff affects their amount of motivation and thus results (Heath, 2006:15). When staff has the desire to work physically and mentally, they will increase their efficiency (Boles et al., 2004:51). They also indicated that having a correct workplace atmosphere helps to reduce the amount of absenteeism and can boost efficiency in the competitive and vibrant company globe of today.
Working environment plays an important role towards the employees ‘performance. Working environment is argued to impact immensely on employees’ performance either towards negative or the positive outcomes (Chandrasekar2001:1-4). In the world, there are international organizations who debate the rights of employee. Most people spend fifty percent of their lives within indoor environments, which greatly influence their mental status, actions, abilities and performance (Dorgan, 1994:10-14). Over the last decades, the factors of work environment of the office workers had changed due to the changes in several factors such as the social environment, information technology and the flexible ways of organizing work processes (Hasun & Makhbul, 2005:46). Better outcomes and increased productivity is assumed to be the result of better workplace environment. Better physical environment of office will boosts the employees and ultimately improve their productivity. Various literature pertain to the study of multiple offices and office buildings indicated that the factors such as dissatisfaction, cluttered workplaces and the physical environment are playing a major role in the loss of employees’ productivity (Carnevale 1992, Clements- Croome 1997:51).
In the 1990’s, the factors of work environment had changed due to the changes in several factors such as the social environment, information technology and the flexible ways of organizing work processes (Hasun & Makhbul, 2005:21). When employees’ are physically and emotionally fit will have the desire to work and their performance 6outcomes shall be increased. Moreover, a proper workplace environment helps in reducing the number of absenteeism and thus can increase the employees’ performance which leads to increased productivity at the workplace (Boles et al.2004:45) MTN which is a telecommunication company found itself in Cameroon in the year 2000 and this organization has branches in many parts of Africa and the world. MTN has grown over the years and it’s the leading mobile telecommunication company in Cameroon. There are other mobile communication companies like Orange, Nextel, and CAMTEL. Some renowned products of MTN are: mobile telephone calls, Mobile Money, and internet services. It employs almost 250,000 people in Cameroon. On the other hand employees are faced with issues concerning their work environment especially their working hours due to Shifts and lack of mobility in the workplace in terms of promotions. This is also coupled with other work environment related challenges that might cause them to
Under perform. According to Tripathi (2014:50). The work environment can be defined as the environment in which people work that include physical setting, job profile, culture and market condition. Each aspect is inter linked and impacts on employee’s overall performance and productivity. It is the quality of the employees’ workplace environment that most impacts on their level of motivation subsequently performance. Work environment can be thought of simply as the environment in which people work (Briner, 2000:112) as such; it is a very broad category that encompasses the physical setting (e.g. heat, equipment), characteristics of the job itself (e.g. workload, task complexity). He adds that it also encompasses broader organizational features (e.g. culture, history) and even aspects of the external organizational setting (e.g. local labor market conditions, industry sector, work life balance) Employees will always be contended when they feel that their immediate environment states are in LINE with their obligations (Farh, 2012:4-6). Chandrasekhar (2011:45) asserts that the type of workplace environment in which employees operate determines whether or not organizations will prosper. The workplace environment consists of physical factors which include the office layout and design among other factors. Other aspects of the workplace environment are the policies which include employment conditions. A better physical workplace environment boosts employees’ performance. Employees in many organizations are encountering with working problems related to workplace environmental and physical factors. It has been argued by Pech and Slade (2006:26) that employee disengagement is increasing and it has become important to make workplaces that positively influence workforce. Employees’ comfort on the job, determined by workplace conditions and environment, has been recognized as an important factor for measuring their productivity (Leblebici, 2012:10). In today’s dynamic and competitive business world, a healthy workplace environment makes good business sense. Managers should not just focus on the employees’ pay packet with the assumption that it is proportionate to performance (Heath, 2006:70). Organizations deemed as a positive place to work will have a competitive edge over the others.
Armstrong (2006:46) defines performance as the development of quantified objectives. Performance is not only a matter of what people achieves but how they achieve. Performance defined by Sultana et al. (2012:48) as the achievement of specified tasks against predetermined or identified standards of accuracy, completeness, cost and speed. High performance is a step towards the achievement of organizational goals and tasks. Frese and Sonnentag (2001:40) opined that an individual performance is highly important for an organization a s a whole and the individuals working in it. Organizations need highly performing employees in order to meet their goals and to deliver the products and services they are specialized in and finally to achieve a competitive advantage. Platt and Sobotka (2010:25) assert that employee performance is the combined result of effort, ability and perception of tasks. The factors that affect the level of individual performance are motivation, ability and opportunity to participate (Armstrong, 2009:40). He perceives performance as a function of ability and motivation. There are a number of factors that affect employee performance, the workplace environment impacts most their level of motivation hence their performance. Setup (2003:20) describes several factors towards the success of employees’ performance. These factors include physical environment, equipment, meaningful work, performance expectation, feedback on performance, bad system among others. He adds that, to have a standard performance, employers have to get the employees task done on track so as to achieve the organizational goals.
1.2 PROBLEM STATEMENT
There are many variables affecting employee efficiency in an organization. The workplace environment plays an essential role in worker’s performance and productivity in any organization (El-Zeiny, 2013:10). The workplace environment in the majority of organizations is unsafe and unhealthy. These include poorly designed workstations, unsuitable furniture, and lack of ventilation, insufficient safety measures in fire emergencies and lack of personal protective equipment. There are many factors as the Economic and Social Council reported in 2007, global economic growth is increasingly failing to create the kinds of new and better jobs that can lead to a reduction in poverty. Despite high and sustained economic growth in many developing countries, unemployment is rising, a large proportion of the labour force is working below poverty level wages, and the majority of non-agricultural employment is situated in the informal economy. It is of little surprise that in recent years there has been a shift of focus from a singular interest in economic growth to an enlarged concern with improving the quality of work. Governments from across Africa have forcefully called for action to overcome these challenges. The African Union Extraordinary Summit on Employment and Poverty Alleviation in Africa (Ouagadougou, September 2004:41) overwhelmingly endorsed the ILO’s Decent Work Agenda with an emphasis on the creation of quality jobs.
Noble (2009:1) states that more attention should be paid in identifying and dealing with working environment because when employee have negative perception to their environment they sometimes suffer from chronic stress. Opperman (2002:2) stated that, working environment means those processes, systems, structures, tools or conditions in the workplace that impact favorably or unfavorably individual performance. The working environment also includes policies, rules, culture, resources, working relationships, work location, internal and external environmental factors, all of which influence the ways that employee perform their job functions. This study is designed to examine the impact of working environment on employee’s performance at MTN Cameroon in Buea municipality. This is a telecommunication company which operates in Buea with so many employees. The problem identified which made the researcher to undergo this research is based on the physical work environment which mostly affect employees’ performance. The organization is located in an area which is small compared to the number of customers and employees. This resulted to lack of enough offices for employees to do their work effectively, noise which causes discomfort depending on the task they are given and the environment of the place they are working.
Through this study the employer will get to know how its work environment impacts greatly on the employee’s level of motivation and performance. A well designed office signals the values and objectives of the organization and the use of design in office interior communicates an organization values and identity. Office design therefore should be one of the factors in affecting employee’s productivity. Employee’s morale is often interrelated when it comes to productivity in the work environment. It is therefore important to find out the impact of working environment on employees’ performance at MTN Cameroon which will provide knowledge and measures to other public institutions in Cameroon.
To what extend dos the working environment affect the performance of employees in an organisation?
- What is the contribution to employees’ performance feedback?
- What are the effects on work environments that add towards employees’ performance?
- What extend does supervisor support contribute towards employees’ performance?