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The adoption of job rotation: Testing the theories

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  • Tor Eriksson
  • Jaime Ortega

Abstract

This paper tests three possible explanations for why firms adopt job rotation: employee learning (rotation makes employees more versatile), employer learning (through rotation, employers learn more about individual workers' strengths), and employee motivation (rotation mitigates boredom). Whereas previous studies have examined either establishment characteristics or a single firm's personnel records, this study merges information from a detailed survey of Danish private sector firms with linked employer-employee panel data, allowing firm characteristics, work force characteristics, and firms' human resource management practices to be included as explanatory variables. The results reject the employee motivation hypothesis, but support the employee learning and, especially, the employer learning hypotheses. Firms allocating more resources to training were more likely to rotate workers; rotation schemes were more common in less hierarchical firms and in firms with shorter average employee tenure; and both firm growth rates and firms' use of nation-wide recruitment were positively associated with rotation schemes. (Free full-text download available at http://digitalcommons.ilr.cornell.edu/ilrreview/.)

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Bibliographic Info

Article provided by ILR Review, Cornell University, ILR School in its journal ILR Review.

Volume (Year): 59 (2006)
Issue (Month): 4 (July)
Pages: 653-666

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Handle: RePEc:ilr:articl:v:59:y:2006:i:4:p:653-666

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References

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  1. Sandra E. Black & Lisa M. Lynch, 2001. "What's driving the new economy? The benefits of workplace innovation," Staff Reports 118, Federal Reserve Bank of New York.
  2. Jaime Ortega, 2001. "Job Rotation as a Learning Mechanism," Management Science, INFORMS, vol. 47(10), pages 1361-1370, October.
  3. Paul Osterman, 1994. "How common is workplace transformation and who adopts it?," Industrial and Labor Relations Review, ILR Review, Cornell University, ILR School, vol. 47(2), pages 173-188, January.
  4. Metin M. Cosgel & Thomas J. Miceli, 1999. "Job Rotation: Cost, Benefits, and Stylized Facts," Journal of Institutional and Theoretical Economics (JITE), Mohr Siebeck, Tübingen, vol. 155(2), pages 301-, June.
  5. Maury Gittleman & Michael Horrigan & Mary Joyce, 1998. "Flexible workplace practices: Evidence from a nationally representative survey," Industrial and Labor Relations Review, ILR Review, Cornell University, ILR School, vol. 52(1), pages 99-115, October.
  6. David Neumark & Peter Cappelli, 1999. "Do "High Performance" Work Practices Improve Establishment-Level Outcomes?," NBER Working Papers 7374, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
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Citations

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Cited by:
  1. Stefanie Brilon, 2010. "Job Assignment with Multivariate Skills," Working Paper Series of the Max Planck Institute for Research on Collective Goods 2010_25, Max Planck Institute for Research on Collective Goods.
  2. Ruzita Selamat Author_Email: ruzita@utm.my & Norhalimah Idris & Nur Naha Abu Mansor, 2011. "Comparative Findings From Focus Group Discussions: A Research Evidence," 2nd International Conference on Business and Economic Research (2nd ICBER 2011) Proceeding 2011-504, Conference Master Resources.
  3. DeVaro, Jed & Farnham, Martin, 2010. "Two Perspectives on Multiskilling and Product Market Volatility," MPRA Paper 23089, University Library of Munich, Germany.
  4. Koch, Michael & Egger, Hartmut, 2013. "Trade and the Firm-Internal Allocation of Workers to Tasks," Annual Conference 2013 (Duesseldorf): Competition Policy and Regulation in a Global Economic Order 79841, Verein für Socialpolitik / German Economic Association.
  5. Ruckes, Martin & Rønde, Thomas, 2010. "Dynamic incentives in organizations: Success and inertia," Working Paper Series in Economics 7, Karlsruhe Institute of Technology (KIT), Department of Economics and Business Engineering.
  6. Daniel Müller, 2010. "On Horns and Halos: Confirmation Bias and Job Rotation," Bonn Econ Discussion Papers bgse05_2010, University of Bonn, Germany.
  7. Bernstrøm, Vilde Hoff, 2013. "The relationship between three stages of job change and long-term sickness absence," Social Science & Medicine, Elsevier, vol. 98(C), pages 239-246.
  8. Prasad, Suraj & Tran, Hien, 2013. "Work practices, incentives for skills, and training," Labour Economics, Elsevier, vol. 23(C), pages 66-76.

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