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INVESTIGATING THE IMPACT OF EMPLOYEE RELATIONS MANAGEMENT PRACTICES ON JOB SATISFACTION OF EMPLOYEES IN FINANCIAL INSTITUTIONS IN CAMEROON

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INVESTIGATING THE IMPACT OF EMPLOYEE RELATIONS MANAGEMENT PRACTICES ON JOB SATISFACTION OF EMPLOYEES IN FINANCIAL INSTITUTIONS IN CAMEROON

CHAPTER ONE

INTRODUCTION

1.1 Background of the Study

The human resource system stands as a central pillar within any organization, wielding influence over various components such as finance, marketing, technology, and production (Gruman & Saks, 2021). In today's rapidly evolving business landscape, characterized by technological advancements and globalization, knowledge emerges as a paramount resource that confers competitive advantage (Gruman & Saks, 2021). Human Resource Management (HRM) plays a pivotal role in fostering positive employee relationships and maintaining morale through the provision of conducive working conditions (Stewart & Brown, 2018). As a catalyst for change, HRM oversees diverse organizational activities. Furthermore, human resources are important because they are essential to managing and using other organizational assets as efficiently as possible (Gruman & Saks, 2021). In order to assure organizational performance and survival, Schuler and Jackson (2020) view HRM practices as a holistic system geared at attracting, developing, motivating, and retaining employees. According to them, these procedures play a crucial role in developing the dedication of important and gifted employees and fostering a good relationship between management and employees.Employee Relationship Management (ERM), also known as Employee Relations Management, constitutes a strategic process geared towards enhancing motivation through the cultivation of individual relationships between employers and employees (Wargborn, 2018). A robust management-employee relationship is indispensable for fostering positive organizational growth, as employee performance is heavily influenced by the organizational environment (Wargborn, 2018). Additionally, employee relationship management is the skill of successfully managing and monitoring relationships between members of the same team as well as those from other teams. Through the use of employee relationship management practices, the organization employees' relationships are strengthened and every individual is guaranteed to be happy and have positive working relationships. However, enhancing employee relations management promises both employers and employees greater attraction, retention, motivation, and performance of staff members (Schweitzer & Lyons, 2018), as well as improved morale among staff members (Harrison et al., 2019). Similarly, it brings more positive aspects to the firm than just increased employee motivation (Grant, 2022; Gegax & Grimme, 2018). In addition to nurturing individual relationships, Employee Relationship Management (ERM) encompasses the communication and interactions between management and employees, with the goal of fostering employer-employee relationships that contribute to enhanced productivity, job satisfaction, motivation, and morale (George & Jones, 2022). Effective employee relations facilitate positive communication and attitudes between management and employees, ultimately promoting employee well-being and resolving issues that may arise in the workplace (Kaliski, 2019). Employee relationship management involves the skillful balancing of work and personal life demands, maintaining open lines of communication with employees, and cultivating positive relationships with stakeholders such as trade unions, suppliers, and customers, while also measuring and monitoring outcomes (Kaliski, 2019). Organizations often employ various practices to manage employee relationships effectively and leverage the strengths of each team member. According to Michael (2019), Employee Relations involves managing the relationship between employers and employees with the primary objective of maximizing productivity while ensuring employee motivation and addressing issues that negatively impact the work environment. Employee Relations Managers offer guidance to line managers on enhancing employee performance, as well as assisting managers in resolving grievances, disputes, and legal matters. Additionally, it is the responsibility of the Employee Relations Department to inform internal stakeholders about organizational rules, regulations, policies, goals, and targets to align with the management's vision and mission.

Financial institutions that deliver high-quality services tend to have greater customer retention rates and comparatively higher employee retention rates. Employee job satisfaction leads to loyal customers, as employees are viewed as internal customers who deserve the same level of satisfaction as external customers. However, progressive Employee Relations practices contribute to the success of leading organizations, with management selecting practices that best suit the organizational culture. These practices aim to enhance employee skills, ultimately improving organizational performance indirectly. Although there are financial laws and statutes that regulate the management of employment relationships, employee relationship management varies from organization to organization throughout the majority of the nation. This is because the leadership or management styles that an organization chooses to adopt have an impact on how the relationships are managed. Therefore, a survey will be conducted in order to investigate on the impact of employee relations management practices on job satisfaction of employees in financial institutions in Cameroon.

1.2 Statement of the Problem

Healthy relationships between employees and employers benefit organizations in numerous ways. Employees who enjoy mutually respectful relationships with their employers tend to exhibit higher levels of happiness, loyalty, and productivity over the long term. Sustaining employee engagement and satisfaction requires more than just competitive pay and benefits. According to Ali, Lei, and Wei (2018), employees prioritize respectful treatment as the most crucial factor in job satisfaction. Trust between employees and senior management also ranks highly, especially in times of workplace uncertainty, as job security concerns can significantly impact employee morale. Organizations can foster a sense of security through transparent communication about the company's health and long-term prospects. Financial institutions free from stress, morale issues, harassment, and discrimination cultivate a positive and healthy environment for all employees. Despite the importance of employee relationship management (ERM), there remains a lack of consensus and understanding in the field (Strohmeier, 2019). Researchers advocating further investigation include Purcell et al. (2019), Wright et al. (2018), and Katou et al. (2018). Although some studies, such as the analysis conducted by Chaubey, Mishra, and Dimri (2019), shed light on ERM practices and their impact on job satisfaction, much of the existing literature focuses on Western contexts. Moreover, literature on employee relationship management in the financial sector remains limited, indicating a gap in understanding and addressing the unique challenges and dynamics of this industry. Hence, it is in the light of these that the study seeks to investigate on the impact of employee relations management practices on job satisfaction of employees in financial institutions in Cameroon

1.3  Objectives of the Study

The main purpose of this study is to investigate on the impact of employee relations management practices on job satisfaction of employees in financial institutions in Cameroon. Specifically, the study will;

a.Assess the current employee relations management practices adopted by financial institutions in Cameroon. 

b.Investigate the relationship between employee relations management practices  and  job satisfaction of employees  in financial institutions in Cameroon. 

c.Identify the factors influencing employee relations management practices  among employees  in financial institutions in Cameroon. 

d.Assess the impact of employee relations management practices on job satisfaction of employees in financial institutions in Cameroon. 

1.4 Research Questions

The following questions have been prepared for the study:

What are the current employee relations management practices  adopted by financial institutions in Cameroon?

b. Is there a relationship between employee relations management practices  and  job satisfaction of employees  in financial institutions in Cameroon?

c. What are the factors influencing employee relations management practices  among employees  in financial institutions in Cameroon?

d. What is the impact of employee relations management practices on job satisfaction of employees in financial institutions in Cameroon?

1.5  Research Hypotheses

H0: Employee relations management practices has no significant impact on job satisfaction of employees in financial institutions in Cameroon.

Ha: Employee relations management practices has a significant impact on job satisfaction of employees in financial institutions in Cameroon..

1.6  Significance of the Study

Employers and employees will both benefit from the study. Employees will benefit from the chance to share their unique viewpoints on labor relations and how they affect output. They can make suggestions on how to improve interactions between employees and employers. However management is also going to gain from this. They will be given the study's conclusions as well as suggestions made by the participants. Through this study, they will gain an understanding of the benefits of cultivating positive employee relations and how it affects performance. Furthermore, management in a variety of organizations, sectors, and businesses will learn from the study about the implications of employee-employer relationship practices. The focus will be on emphasizing the essential employee relations procedures that businesses use for the good of their employees. Moreover,  subsequent researchers will use it as a literature review. This means that other students who may decide to conduct studies in this area will have the opportunity to use this study as available literature that can be subjected to critical review. Invariably, the result of the study contributes immensely to the body of academic knowledge with regard to the impact of employee relations management practices on job satisfaction of employees in financial institutions in Cameroon.

1.7 Scope of the study

The scope of this study is boarded on the impact of employee relations management practices on job satisfaction of employees in financial institutions in Cameroon. Empirically, this study will assess the current employee relations management practices  adopted by financial institutions in Cameroon, investigate the relationship between employee relations management practices  and  job satisfaction of employees  in financial institutions in Cameroon, identify the factors influencing employee relations management practices  among employees  in financial institutions in Cameroon and assess the impact of employee relations management practices on job satisfaction of employees in financial institutions in Cameroon. 

Geographically, the study will be delimited to employees of some selected financial institution in Douala, Cameroon.

1.8 Limitation of the study

In the course of carrying out this study, the researcher experienced some constraints, which included time constraints, financial constraints, language barriers, and the attitude of the respondents. In addition, there was the element of researcher bias. Here, the researcher possessed some biases that may have been reflected in the way the data was collected, the type of people interviewed or sampled, and how the data gathered was interpreted thereafter. The potential for all this to influence the findings and conclusions could not be downplayed. 

More so, the findings of this study are limited to the sample population in the study area, hence they may not be suitable for use in comparison to other schools, local governments, states, and other countries in the world.

 1.9 Definition of Terms

Employee Relations: refers to the interactions, dynamics, and relationships among employees within an organization and between employees and management, encompassing communication, teamwork, conflict resolution, and workplace atmosphere (Olaolu, 2019)

Performance: the extent to which an individual, team, or organization successfully achieves predetermined goals, objectives, or standards within a given time frame.

Motivation:  the internal or external factors that drive an individual to initiate, sustain, and direct their behavior towards achieving a particular goal or fulfilling a need.

Employee: an individual employed by an organization or company to perform specific tasks or duties in exchange for compensation. 


This material content is developed to serve as a GUIDE for students to conduct academic research



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