Friday, June 11, 2010

Review of Job Diagnostic Survey for Job Satisfaction - eCornell Project Leadership Certificate

As part of the Earned Value Management Class at eCornell, we are learning techniques for designing jobs in order to maximize motivation in employees.

The Designing Jobs Appropriately segment focuses on Job Diagnostic Survey for Job Satisfaction authored by J.R. Hackman and G.R. Oldham. The coursework provides a detailed explanation of how to use survey results to provide job responsibilities that will motivate emplyees, but the class does not provide a copy of the actual survey itself. I have found a pdf copy of the survey at, available here: and a actual online test that is designed for restaurant staff but can provide results for people in any job here:

An important part of the survey that neither test compensated for is the Intervening Factor. The Intervening Factor states that if an employee does not have a need for growth in the job or in one aspect of motivation, he/she will not benefit from a job duty redesign that emphasizes those characteristics.

For instance, if I want to just do my job and get paid enough to engage in my hobbies, the boss making my job more complex by increasing my job skills or giving me ownership of the entire process of developing and producing the product I am creating would not motivate me.

The survey also does not ask the respondent if any of the questions are aspects of the job that he/she would base motivation upon. My job has a fixed work schedule, so I had to disagree with the statement that my job provides me the opportunity of self-directed flexibility of work hours. Flexible work hours is not a job perk that would motivate me. The test just automatically concluded that my job is less satisfying, without asking whether work schedule was a make-or-break source of work motivation.

Thank you for your time! If you have any questions about my experience with the eCornell Project Leadership classes, please email me at

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