The effects of organizational work-life balance policies on employee engagement

Thumbnail Image
Journal Title
Journal ISSN
Volume Title
Underpinned by the boundary management theory, organisational support theory, role theory and other related theories, the study proposed and tested a multi-level model that simultaneously examined the intermediate linkages or mechanisms through which work-life balance (WLB) impact individual and organisational work-related outcomes. First and underpinned by boundary management theories, the study examined at the organisational level, collective employee awareness and usage of organizational WLB policies, as pathways through which the adoption and implementation of WLB policies influences collective experience of WLB at the organizational level. Second and, underpinned by organisational support (perceived organizational support) and social exchange (employee engagement) theories, the study examined cross level mechanisms through which experienced WLB may influence employee work-related attitude and behaviour such as cognitive engagement and perceived organisational support. At the individual level of the model, the study investigated the linkages between job resources and its potential outcomes such as work-life enrichment, perceived organizational support and behavioural engagement on the basis of organizational support theory, role and spill-over theories. Propositions made in this study were also tested with multisource data obtained from junior and senior staff, and managers of 30 organisations from the three major sectors of the Ghanaian economy. Results of the hierarchical multiple regression (HMR) analysis revealed that (i) collective employee awareness and usage of WLB policies influenced collective experience of WLB at the organisational level. Additionally, results of hierarchical linear modelling (HLM) tests of the cross-level influences on the motivational implications of WLB revealed that, collective awareness, usage and experience of WLB had positive and significant influence on perceived organizational support at the individual level. The result also indicates iii that employees‘ collective experience of work-life balance (EWLB) significantly but negatively moderates the relationship between employee cognitive engagement and perceived organisational support (POS) such that at low levels of cognitive engagement, high EWLB influences POS more than low EWLB. Results from HMR analysis of level one hypotheses revealed that job resources led to work-life enrichment, perceived organizational support and behavioural engagement among employees. Employees‘ satisfaction with WLB policies partially mediated the relationship between job resources and employees‘ behavioural engagement, while traditional gender role partially mediated the relationship between work-life enrichment and perceived organizational support. Additionally, perceived organisational support had a direct influence on behavioural engagement. Based on the findings of the study, theoretical and managerial/practical implications for WLB research are discussed. Limitations related to the field-nature of the study as well as content areas for future programmatic research aimed at enhancing the nomological network of WLB and employee engagement are also discussed.
A thesis submitted to the Department of Human Resource and Organizational Development, Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology in partial fulfilment of the requirements for the degree of Doctor of Philosophy, 2015