Dual Commitment in the Australian Construction Industry

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Bakalis, Steve, Joiner, Therese A and Leveson, Lynne (2010) Dual Commitment in the Australian Construction Industry. Asia Pacific Journal of Human Resources, 48 (3). pp. 302-318. ISSN 1038-4111


The rapid growth in the size and nature of ‘non-standard’ work arrangements (such as co-employment) has raised questions about their effect on the commitment and loyalty of the workers concerned. While maintaining and encouraging employee commitment is a core human resource management function in standard work arrangements, there is far less guidance available for equivalent practice within a non-standard context. Additionally, it remains unclear as to whether organisational behaviour theories used to explain commitment in the standard work context are generalisable to less traditional work settings. The study described here measured the commitment and perceived support (organisational and social) of labour-hire workers in the Australian construction industry to their employing agency and their current host firm. Also investigated was the relationship between these forms of support and affective commitment to both entities. The results indicate that the workers were committed to both entities although their commitment to and their perceptions of organisational and social support from the employing agency was higher. Further, we found a positive association between employing agency affective commitment and both forms of perceived support and a positive association between host affective commitment and perceived host organisational support. These results affirm the existence of dual commitment and highlight the role that positive perceptions of support play in engendering this commitment. While the findings indicate that conventional organisational theories are relevant to human resource management practices in coemployment relationships, it is suggested that such practices must account for the great diversity of contexts, employees and employment arrangements that characterise these relationships.

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Additional Information

Online ISSN: 1744-7941

Item type Article
URI https://vuir.vu.edu.au/id/eprint/7091
DOI 10.1177/1038411110378957
Official URL http://apj.sagepub.com/content/48/3/302
Subjects Historical > Faculty/School/Research Centre/Department > School of Economics and Finance
Historical > FOR Classification > 1503 Business and Management
Historical > SEO Classification > 9104 Management and Productivity
Keywords ResPubID21276. Australian construction industry, building sector, construction sector, contract labour, working conditions, human resources, human resource management, HRM, employee commitment, labour-hire workers, employer-employee relationship, employees, employment agencies co-employment, dual commitment, organisational support, social support, commitment, Australia
Citations in Scopus 5 - View on Scopus
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