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M anagement 2012, 2(4): 106-112 DOI: 10.5923/


Perceptions of Organizational Downsizing and Job Satisfaction Among Survivors in Nigerian Banks
Darius Ngutor Ikyanyon
Department of Business M anagement, Benue State University, M akurdi, 970001, Nigeria

Abstract The object ive of the study was to determine how survivors’ perception of downsizing as financially effective,

inevitable, and liberating for v ictims affect their job satisfaction. Data was collected fro m 150 survivors in 8 banks operating in Makurdi metropolis. Pearson product moment correlation coefficient and regression were tools of data analysis. The study revealed that survivors’ perception of downsizing as financially effective and inevitable negatively affect their job satisfaction. Though the relationship between survivors’ perception of downsizing as liberating for victims and job satisfaction was positive, it was not statistically significant. The analysis of variance showed that there was no difference in survivors’ perception of downsizing among the banks studied, while their level o f job satisfaction varied. On the whole, we conclude that downsizing negatively affects the job satisfaction of survivors.

Keywords Downsizing, Job Satisfaction, Su rvivors, Ban ks, Nigeria
originally expected. Emp loyees who are unaffected by downsizing and remain with the organ izat ion subsequent to downsizing are known as survivors[18-19]. Since downsizing affects work processes wittingly or unwittingly[20], survivors have to adjust to the new forms of organization. Their ability to cope with the changes in the organization and perform effect ively determines the success of downsizing[21-22]. It has been observed that survivors confront difficu lt situations like work overload, wh ich causes fatigue and ultimately leads to dissatisfaction[3]. Job satisfaction has received serious attention in organizational behaviour research due to its potential benefits to individuals and organizations. For instance, it has been reported that emp loyees who are satisfied are productive[23-24], co mmitted to the cause of the organization[25-30] and less likely to exhib it negative work-related attitudes which are costly to the organization such as intention to quit, turnover and absenteeism[31-32]. Research on survivors’ work-related attitudes however show that survivors exhibit a p lethora of negative attitudes and behaviours such as intent to quit, decline in organizat ional commit ment, loyalty and trust, feelings of job insecurity, and job dissatisfaction[33-34],[12],[35-36]. Banks in Nigeria have embarked on massive downsizing in recent times, with a view to ensuring more efficient management to enable them deliver better returns to stakeholders[37]. There is therefore the need to examine the effect of downsizing on job satisfaction of survivors in Nigerian banks. However, most of the previous studies on survivors’ work- related attitudes, for example[38],[34],[3945] were carried out in Western societies. It is therefore

1. Introduction
Maintaining the right size of workforce is central to the survival of every organization. Emp loyees remain the most important resources of an organization and are key to gaining competitive advantage. There is therefore the need for emp loyees to be managed effectively if an organization is to survive[1]. As a result of changes taking place within the business environment, occasioned by globalization, competi tion is not only tough but fierce[2]. To co mpete effectively, organizations need to maximize productivity, increase effectiveness and imp rove efficiency, which entails cost reduction as well[3]. Since organizations find themselves operating in more co mplex, unpredictable, and dynamic environments, they employ different strategies to achieve their goals, with downsizing one of the favoured strategies [4]. “Org an izat io n al d o wn s izin g is an o rg an izat io n ’s conscious use of permanent personnel redu ct ions in an attempt to improve its efficiency and/or effectiveness”[5, p. 70]. Th is i mp lies t h at do wns izin g is delib erat e and undertaken by organizat ions to reduce its workforce[5-8]. Secondly, organizat ions that downsize are concerned with imp rov ing o rgan izat ional efficiency and/o r effect iveness [9-11]. However, some research evidence[12-17] suggests that most downsizing init iatives have not been as effective in achieving organizational effect iveness and/or efficiency as
* Corresponding author: (Darius Ngutor Ikyanyon) Published online at Copyright © 2012 Scientific & Academic Publishing. All Rights Reserved

The thinking is that employees who remain with the organization are relieved for not loosing their jobs. efficiency. Banks in Nigeria have invested in technologies as could be seen in the proliferat ion of ATMs and internet banking. As a result of changes in wo rk processes. and fair. The objective of this study therefore.[4]. 2. guilt and fear[57-58]. we consider three ways employees perceive downsizing since perception affects their attitudes after downsizing[45]. Survival syndrome is exp ressed in increasing an xiety and risk aversion[54-55]. The negative attitudes employees exhibit subsequent to downsizing is described as survival syndrome or sickness[38]. 3. Previous studies[49]. anxiety. Organizations that downsize still perform poorly. In this study. lack of strategic direction. Organizations have often under-estimated the negative effects of downsizing and do not consider the difficu lties in motivating survivors to achieve greater productivity which is paramount to organizat ional success and employee job satisfaction[53]. but must also be perceived by all e mp loyees to be clear. It is therefore impo rtant to recognize emp loyees’ career needs and educate them on the new organizational v ision and structure. These survivors exhib it symptoms such as low mo rale. This suggests that downsizing causes dissatisfaction rather than job satisfaction since survival syndrome constitutes a mixed bag of antecedents of job dissatisfaction. job insecurity. tard iness. dissatisfaction with planning and communication. Emp loyees often rationally understand and defend the need for downsizing but find it difficult to accept it emot ionally. Th is survival syndrome is defined as the mixed bag of behaviours and emotions often exhib ited by emp loyees follo wing o rganizat ional downsizing[52].107 M anagement 2012. Literature Review Downsizing constitutes a particular form of organizational restructuring[46].[51]. and liberating for victims[45]. Figure 1. appropriate. reduced risk taking and motivation. distrust and betrayal. This is because employees’ perception of downsizing influences their work-related attitudes following organizational downsizing[59]. cynicism. lack of reciprocal commit ment.[50] have shown that downsizing is not a guarantee of organizat ional success. lack of t rust[40]. it involves the reduction in personnel[6] and frequently results in work redesign[20] in order to improve organizat ional productivity[47]. while helping them process their feelings[56]. 2(4): 106-112 important to enhance our understanding of organizational downsizing and job satisfaction of survivors in a non-western country. and effectiveness[11]. Reference[37] found that downsizing has imp roved the efficiency and profitability of banks in Nigeria. increased levels of absenteeism. Surv ivors are not only concerned about the outcome of downsizing but the rationale for downsizing and how it was done. depression. This is especially true of surviving emp loyees as. lack of management cred ibility. according to[60]. dissatisfaction with the layoff process. These affect their work-related attitudes such as job satisfaction. inevitable. the following hypotheses will be tested. survivors are in a unique position to judge the fairness of downsizing and that they respond positively to this perception by becoming mo re committed to the organizat ion. lower morale.[14-15]. short-term profit orientation. low productivity. . among other negative attitudes[41]. and a sense of permanent change[43]. One of the reasons for the poor performance of organizations that downsize is that too often. survivors experience so me pressure fro m work and as a result are d issatisfied following organizational downsizing[3]. turnover. was to examine how survivors’ perception of downsizing affects their job satisfaction in Nigerian banks. Downsizing has been used to avoid bankruptcy and secure survival[48] and is co mmon ly adopted by firms after making large investments in labour saving technologies. The authors suggest that the criteria used in selecting emp loyees for downsizing must not only be clear and appropriate. Issues relating to survival syndrome can be painful and far reaching at both the individual and organizational levels. The feelings and concerns experienced by survivors are. unfairness. dissatisfaction. Framework for the Study The manner in wh ich downsizing is imp lemented determines the success of the strategy in achieving organizational effect iveness. fatigue. This is perhaps one of the reasons for massive downsizing in the sector since technology has replaced most human jobs. the focus is on employees who are released while those that remain are neglected. Emp loyees may perceive organizational downsizing as being financially effective. Framework for the Study On the basis of the framework for the study.

Fidelity Bank. This scale has been used with success among Nigerian samples.064 -.05). The demographic characteristi cs of the respondents shows that 95 (63. H2: Organizational downsizing negatively affects job satisfaction of survivors. The correlations in table 1 indicate that survivors’ perception of downsizing as financially effective negatively correlates with job satisfaction (r = .657** .165* .530 3.060 -.605** . the relationship was not significant (p > ..806 15.37 1. United Bank for Africa (UBA)..Darius Ngutor Ikyanyon: Perceptions of Organizational Downsizing and Job Satisfaction Among Survivors in Nigerian Banks 108 H1a: There will be no significant positive relat ionship between survivors’ perception of downsizing as financially effective and job satisfaction.116 .369 N 150 150 150 150 142 127 150 150 . Results and Discussion Data analysis was based on 150 questionnaires that were duly co mpleted and returned. Job satisfaction was measured using the job satisfaction index (JSI).006 -.98 2. TH1b : here will be no significant positive relat ionship between survivors’ perception of downsizing as inevitable and job satisfaction.484 .644 3.969 3.085 -.203 -. Downsizing was considered the independent variable while job satisfaction was considered the dependent variable. and liberat ing for vict ims.039 -.7%) were female.766 S.680. The reliability of the scales was 0. inevitable.64 16.074). The study sought to determine how survivors perceptions of organizational downsizing affects their job satisfaction.152 .33%) were duly co mp leted and returned.055 -.074 . The means. “Strongly Agree”. standard deviations and correlations between the variables of the study is presented in table 1.050 .019 -.662* -.173 15.266 7.084 .786 1. A total of 150 questionnaires (83. 4. Methodology This study adopted the survey research design since data was collected fro m the participants without imposing any condition or treat ment on them.3%) were Degree holders. and Mainstreet Bank. Descriptive Statistics and Correlation for Study Variables Variables 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 Perception of Downsizing as Financially Effective Perception of Downsizing as Inevitable Perception of Downsizing as Liberating for Victims Sex Education Job Status Job Satisfaction Mean 14.295** . The scale measured job satisfaction on a 5 point Likert scale anchored fro m 1 = “Strongly Disagree” to 5 = “ Strongly Agree”. D.039 -.165. First Bank. Pearson’s correlation and Regression analysis were the statistical tools used to determine the relat ionship between the independent and dependent variables. 3. Furthermore. H1c: There will be no significant positive relat ionship between survivors’ perception of downsizing as liberating for vict ims and job satisfaction.880 .709 . p < .072 -.037 -. Downsizing was measured using a scale adapted fro m[45]. Majo rity of the respondents (47. The reliability of the scale was 0.091 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 Downsizing **Correlation is significant at .3%) were male wh ile 55 (36.579.05). A structured questionnaire was distributed to 180 layoff survivors in 8 banks operating in Makurdi metropolis namely.01 level (2 tailed) *Correlation is significant at . This was measured on a 5 point Likert Scale anchored fro m 1 = “Strongly Disagree” to 5 = 5. There was also a negative correlation ( r = . Access Bank. the table shows that though the relationship between survivors’ perception of downsizing as liberating for victims and job satisfaction was positive ( r = . Un ion Bank.135 -.05 level (2 tailed) . working at low level management (56%).926 45. T able 1.056 .180* -.199* .90 -. First City Monument Bank (FCMB).158 .84) between survivors’ perception of downsizing as inevitable and job satisfaction. The scale has sub-scales measuring survivors’ perceptions of downsizing as financially effective. Eco Bank.

We therefore accept hypotheses 1a. T able 2.295 8092. 2. p > .050.. It was also not significant for education (r = .90. Perception of Downsizing as financially effective.. p > .055. p > . This means though that survivors are concerned about those who leave the organization as a result of downsizing. Perception of Downsizing as inevitable. Although the relationship between survivors’ perception of downsizing as liberating for vict ims and job satisfaction was positive.822 7425.056..087. While survivors of Fidelity bank had the highest level of job satisfaction (Mean = 19. Overall. p > . Regression Results for Perception of Downsizing and Job Satisfaction Predictor Variable 1.890 (p = .. p > . p > . there was a significant but negative relationship between job status and job satisfaction ( r = . and job status and perception of downsizing as financially effective (r = .000 1320.138.158.. p > .037 1. 146 = 1.155 .05). 2(4): 106-112 In order to determine how much survivors’ perception of downsizing predicts their level of job satisfaction.05). p < ..214).05). job status (r = .138 9. The relat ionship between sex and perception of downsizing as inevitable was not significant (r = . p > .. This is because layoff survivors often feel discouraged. the survivors among the banks studied were not satisfied. p < ..890.063 . education and perception of downsizing as financially effect ive ( r = .180. similarly.05). It has also been reported that downsizing does not improve organizations as a result of negative consequences[6]. The relat ionship was however significant for education and perception of downsizing as inevitable (r = . The findings were somewhat in line with those of[45].155. Ho wever. p > . p < .135.449 The result in Table 3 shows that there was no significant difference in survivors perceptions of downsizing among the banks studied (F 7.822.. 142 = 1.060.05). the differences in the job satisfaction of survivors among the banks indicate that survivors’ response to downsizing depends on how the organization treats them. There was a positive but insignificant relationship between survivors’ perception of downsizing as liberating for vict ims and job satisfaction ( β = .019. p > . p > . p > .833 149 269.109 M anagement 2012.05). T able 3. liberating for victims b Dependent variabl es: Job Satisfaction There was no significant relat ionship between sex and perception of downsizing as financially effective (r = . survivors’ perception of downsizing was the same.019. However.203.05).287 6.[12] assert that downsizing may create negative outcomes for individuals and organizations. . 142 = 4.05). there was a significant difference in the job satisfaction of survivors among the banks studied (F 7..487 4. The correlation between downsizing and job satisfaction as shown in Table 1 indicates a negative relationship between downsizing and job satisfaction (r = . . survivors’ perception of downsizing as inevitable negatively predict their level of job satisfaction ( β = . p > .301 . The table shows that survivors’ perceptions of downsizing as financially effective negatively predict their level of job satisfaction ( β = . p > .412 7 38. fearful and have low morale due to downsizing. financially effective.063). Hypotheses 2 is therefore accepted.193 149 .091.269 1. Ho wever. Table 1 further shows no significant relat ionship between sex and job satisfaction ( r = . survivors at Mainstreet bank had the lowest level of job satisfaction (Mean = 14. In the same vein.087 95.05).05). ANOVA Results of Perception of Downsizing and Job Satisfaction among Banks studied Sum of Squares Downs izing Between Groups Within Groups Total Job Satisfa ction Between Groups Within Groups Total 666.05).05). the regression analysis was applied and presented in Table 2.05). but was not significant for job status and perception of downsizing as inevitable (r = .134) . this is a Predictors: (Constant).. The overall influence of downsizing on job satisfaction shows that survivors’ perception of downsizing does not predict their level of job satisfaction (F 3. Perception of Downsizing as liberating for victims β Level of Significance R2 F – Statistics p > .087 . Previous studies indicate that downsizing negatively affects the job satisfaction of layoff survivors[3].781 142 1590..05). Conclusions We conclude that survivors’ perception of downsizing as financially effective and inevitable negatively affect their job satisfaction. 3.05) as well as no significant relat ionship between education and job satisfaction (r = .953 142 52.881 df 7 Mean Square F Level of Significance .05) and perception of downsizing as liberat ing for vict ims.01). 1b and 1c. The result suggests that irrespective of bank.05). it was not statistically significant.888). This means downsizing negatively affects the job satisfaction of survivors.072. The relationship between sex and perception of downsizing as liberating fo r vict ims was not significant (r = .063 .

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