The Roles of Perceived Organizational Support and Anticipated Change in Organizational Support in Predicting Employee Affective Commitment and Well-Being

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2017-05

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Abstract

Organizational support theory (Eisenberger, Huntington, Hutchison, & Sowa, 1986; Eisenberger & Stinglhamber, 2011; Kurtessis et al., 2015) suggests that employees form perceptions of the extent to which their organization values them and cares about their well-being (i.e., perceived organizational support, or POS). Despite an abundance of research on POS, little research has examined organizational support from a future-oriented perspective. Given the changing nature of today’s business environment and the increasing need for employees to plan for potential job transitions, I argue that researchers should similarly increase our emphasis on employees’ perceptions of the future of their relationship with the organization. In the present study, I introduce the concept of anticipated change in organizational support (ACOS), or employees’ expectation that the level of support from the organization will change for better or for worse in the future. Two of my hypotheses received support: employees who expected that the organization would increase its support in the future demonstrated greater affective organizational commitment over and above the effect of POS. Further, ACOS moderated the relationship between POS and affective commitment, although the nature of the interaction was different than I predicted. Specifically, the relationship between POS and commitment became stronger at high levels of ACOS. However, neither the main effect of ACOS nor the interaction of POS and ACOS significantly contributed to satisfaction or well-being. The results have theoretical implications for current conceptualizations of organizational support, as well as practical implications for how organizations may enhance employee commitment by promoting anticipated support.

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Keywords

Organizational support, Employee commitment

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