Skip to main content

Participative work design: A contribution to democracy in the office and on the shop floor

  • Chapter
  • 227 Accesses

Part of the International series on the quality of working life book series (IQWL,volume 8)

Abstract

The case study described in this paper represents the present stage of an evolutionary attempt to provide workers with the opportunity and skills to redesign their own work systems. This approach has now been used by the author in four different kinds of enterprise, a British company manufacturing building products, an American insurance company, a British bank, and a large British engineering establishment. In each of these establishments a new computer system was being introduced into an office situation and this was seen as providing an admirable opportunity for the redesign of work so as to (1) increase the satisfaction of staff, and (2) increase their work efficiency. It was believed that these two objectives were not entirely independent. Many workers appear to become frustrated and dissatisfied when working in an inefficient and poorly administered work situation, although clearly there are many factors other than efficiency influencing job satisfaction and these will be discussed later in this paper. Similarly an important element in job satisfaction appears to be a feeling of ‘competence’ and people have difficulty in being ‘competent’ where work is not efficiently organized.

Keywords

  • Trade Union
  • Design Group
  • Work System
  • Work Organization
  • Democratic Approach

These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.

The paper was initially prepared for a Moscow symposium of the International Institute for Labour Studies, Geneva.

This is a preview of subscription content, access via your institution.

Buying options

Chapter
USD   29.95
Price excludes VAT (USA)
  • DOI: 10.1007/978-94-009-9230-6_17
  • Chapter length: 19 pages
  • Instant PDF download
  • Readable on all devices
  • Own it forever
  • Exclusive offer for individuals only
  • Tax calculation will be finalised during checkout
eBook
USD   84.99
Price excludes VAT (USA)
  • ISBN: 978-94-009-9230-6
  • Instant PDF download
  • Readable on all devices
  • Own it forever
  • Exclusive offer for individuals only
  • Tax calculation will be finalised during checkout
Softcover Book
USD   109.00
Price excludes VAT (USA)

Preview

Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.

Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.

References

  • Mumford, Enid (1972): Job satisfaction: a method of analysis. In: Personnel Review 1, 3.

    Google Scholar 

  • Mumford, Enid (1976a): Strategy for the redesign of work. In: Personnel Review 5, 2.

    Google Scholar 

  • Mumford, Enid (1976b): Towards the democratic design of work systems. In: Personnel Management 8, 9.

    Google Scholar 

  • Taylor, J. C (1975): The human side of work: the socio-technical approach to work system design. In: Personnel Review 4, 3.

    Google Scholar 

Download references

Author information

Authors and Affiliations

Authors

Rights and permissions

Reprints and Permissions

Copyright information

© 1979 International Council for the Quality of Working Life

About this chapter

Cite this chapter

Mumford, E. (1979). Participative work design: A contribution to democracy in the office and on the shop floor. In: Working on the quality of working life. International series on the quality of working life, vol 8. Springer, Dordrecht. https://doi.org/10.1007/978-94-009-9230-6_17

Download citation

  • DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/978-94-009-9230-6_17

  • Publisher Name: Springer, Dordrecht

  • Print ISBN: 978-94-009-9232-0

  • Online ISBN: 978-94-009-9230-6

  • eBook Packages: Springer Book Archive