RTS Pakistan


HR professionals’ views on work motivation and retention of older workers: a focus group study

Disclaimer: This is only for students’ understanding purpose and do not have any authority / responsibility by Knowthys.

The purpose of the study was divided in two phases. The first is consisting on exploring the Relationship between Old Employee Retention and Employee Motivation through views of variety of Human Resource Professionals. Second, develop procedures for work motivation and employee retention through qualitative data.

The main tool was used Focus Groups Interview, which were divided in to three groups discussion under the observation of moderator. The interviews were taped with the permission of participants. All participants were asked to fill form to ensure that the necessary information has been obtained. Transcript and Field notes were also obtained.

Different sources and time period were used for data collection and ensuring reliability including interview, videotape and field notes, prompt transcripts, double-coding, direct-quotes and rich-data-slices when presenting outcomes.

The authors and / or moderators were very well familiar with the topic and experts under study at various stages of the research process. The Moderators performed independent analysis of the data. The second author was not only familiar with the topic but also she was good researcher. Her training as an organizational psychologist enabled her to develop competencies in interviewing skills and the understanding of group processes.

A pragmatic variant of the grounded theory was adopted for the analysis of the data. The constant comparison was obtained on time to time basis and between old and new data collected and literature review. Initial transcripts were generated with the help of video recordings. Independent authors generated coding and transcripts were also re-read multiple times. Two separate independent coders observed all data analysis and they met several times to discuss their results and found great deal of agreement. The data was analyzed by moderators, authors and both coders to ensure conformity.

The participants were purposefully selected from different organizations including both private and government sectors. A total of 15 participants were selected voluntary which belonged from different sizes of the organization (small, medium and large organizations). However, all participants were connected and working directly in HR related departments such as recruitment, selection, training, industrial relations, evaluation, etc. or as HR consultants.

Firstly, two authors conducted interviews from fifteen selected HR representatives. The second author also performed activities as moderator to facilitate participants during group discussions. As she was a professional researcher, she was well aware with the topic and she has developed her skills set of interviews during her training as an organizational psychology. One observer per focus group was appointed to create field notes during analyzing video tapes. Instead of independent coders, the moderator and first author acted as independent coders.

This study shall be replicated to any other sector in any country by following detailed procedures mentioned in this study. This research comprehensively describes every step of the research that what was the purpose of the research, how the data was collected, the process to analysis the data, results generation, and recommendations. To ensure the reliability and credibility of the data, participants were provided interview guidance, multiple interview sessions were conducted, and independent analysis of data was carried out. Dependability and Transfer-ability was obtained through ensuring independently analysis of the data, mentioning clear and briefly describing the procedures of preparing results. Transcripts were prepared promptly. Sampling and data collection procedures were described through direct quotes, and rich data slices were provided to present findings. Both coders were firmly agreement on all codes and themes which reflected the confirm-ability of the study.

To confirm the authority and position of the authors, the detail of authors shall be discussed here. Rita Claes, the first author of the study is the faculty member of Psychology and Pedagogical Sciences as a Professor of Organizational at the University of Ghent. She has well known experience in the field of work motivation, career behavior and psychological contracts, life roles, and schools-work transition. Research on the topics of Female entrepreneurs, work-home balance and old-age workers in commercial and NGOs are also included in the interest of the Rita Claes.

Mieke Heymansthe, the second author of the study, was also a Researcher at the Department of Personnel Management, Work and Organizational Psychology at the University of Ghent. She also had interest in different topics to research including teleworking, organization attractiveness, and old-age workers. She also served as Human research Manager in a large hospital in private sector.

The subject study was well conducted and it fulfill majority of parameters including validity and reliability tests. This study based on grounded theory. Only fifteen selective participants were participated from different sections of the Human Resource Management such as Training and Development, Recruitment and Selection, etc. Different medians were utilized to obtained data including Focus Group Discussions, Interviews, Video Recordings, and Field Notes. The analyzed data concluded that work motivation plays crucial role in the retention of the old employees. This study can be replicated to other sectors of the organization and in different regions too.

However, this study has some limitations as well. For example, the three mini groups of HR professionals were limited to provide information regarding retention practices; the research was also limited to transfer-ability rather than generally statically. The study can be further expanded to include quantitative research with qualitative research and on other countries and other industries.

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