ISO14001 EMS'S Impact on Employee Attitudes: a Review of the Literature
An environmental management system (EMS) provides the framework for continual environmental improvement through effective management of an organization's environmental impacts. The most well-known and accepted EMS is the ISO 14001 standard on environmental management established by the International Organization for Standardization (ISO). The key components that impact on EMS implementation are a synergistic blend of 'hard' and 'soft' elements. The elements of soft EMS are essentially dimensions of human resource management (HRM), while the 'hard' elements are more technical-oriented. To ensure successful environmental management, the 'hard' elements of an EMS must be accompanied by equal attention to the 'soft' elements. The results of an EMS program are usually new environmental policies, new organizational structures, new operation processes and added responsibilities on employees. As a result these changes may have an effect on employee attitudes. The 'soft' elements must reinforce employees' commitment to environmental improvement and enhance their job satisfaction and the extent to which this is done may decide the success or failure of ISO14001 EMS. The study of employee commitment in general has not been scarce, but research addressing this issue as it relates to the implementation of an ISO14001 EMS in particular is lacking.
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