Hackman, J. R., and Oldham, G. R. (1974). Job Diagnostic Survey. Tests in Microfiche, ETS Test Collection, Princeton, NJ.
Comments: The Job Diagnostic Survey (JDS) has satisfactory psychometric characteristics. Internal consistency reliabili- ties are satisfactory and the scale items are able to discriminate. According to the authors, the JDS may be used to deter- mine if motivation and satisfaction are really problematic; is the job low in motivation potential; what specific aspects of the job are causing the difficulty; how ready are the employees for change; and what special problems and opportunities are present in the existing work system? The JDS is the most frequently cited instrument to measure motivation.
Scale Construction: It took over two years to develop and refine the JDS, which is based on the work of Turner and Lawrence (1965) and Hackman and Lawler (1971). According to the theory, which is the basis for the JDS, positive personal and work outcomes are obtained when three critical psychological states exist. The three critical psychological states are created by the existence of five core dimensions. Using the theory, a motivating potential score can be computed. The JDS has been revised three times over the last two years.
Sample: The original sample consisted of 658 blue collar, white collar, and professional workers from seven industrial and service companies representing 62 distinct jobs. Demographic characteristics are included. Overall, over 1,500 employees from 15 distinct companies representing 100 jobs have participated.
Reliability: Internal consistency reliabilities were: 0.71 (skill variety, feedback from the job itself, and job choice for- mat), 0.59 (task identity), 0.66 (task significance and autonomy), 0.78 (feedback from agents), 0.59 (dealing with oth- ers), 0.74 (experienced meaningfulness of the work), 0.72 (experienced responsibility for the work), 0.76 (knowledge of results, general satisfaction, and internal work motivation), 0.56 (social satisfaction), 0.79 (supervisory satisfac- tion), 0.84 (growth satisfaction), and 0.88 (would like format). Median off-diagonal correlations are also reported.
Validity: The substantive validity of the JDS is described in more detail in another report by Hackman and Oldham (1974). Overall, the variables assessed by the JDS relate to each other as predicted by the theory that is the founda- tion of the survey. In addition, the job dimensions are related to behavioral measures of absenteeism and supervisory ratings of performance effectiveness.
Job Measures: The JDS measures five core dimensions (skill variety, task identity, task significance, autonomy, and feedback from the job itself) and two additional dimensions (feedback from agents and dealing with others). Section 1 contains seven items, while Section 2 contains 14 items (two items for each dimension) The JDS also examines three psychological states (experienced meaningfulness of the work, experienced responsibilities for work outcomes, and knowledge of results) and three affective reactions to the job (general satisfaction, internal work motivation, and sat- isfaction with job security, pay and other compensation, peers and coworkers, supervision, and opportunities for per- sonal growth and development). Section 3 contains 15 items, while Section 5 contains 10 items. Section 4 contains 14 items that relate to the five specific types of satisfaction. Finally, the JDS measures individual growth need strength. Section 6 contains 11 items in a “would like” format, while Section 7 contains 12 items in a job choice format.
Data Analysis: Means, standard deviations, and the results of one-way analyses of variance are reported. Between-job dif- ferences are statistically significant for all of the JDS scale scores. Intercorrelations among the JDS scales are presented.
De Matas, S. S. (2012). A case study on job satisfaction within a VHA HIMS department. Psy.D. dissertation, University of the Rockies. Hackman, J. R., and Oldham, G. R. (1974). Motivation through the design of work: Test of a theory (Technical Report No. 6). New Haven, CT: Yale University.
Kappel, A. M. (2012). Generational cohort as a moderator of the relationship between extrinsic and intrinsic motivation and job satisfaction. PhD dissertation, Walden University.
Mello, J. A. (2012). The relationship between reports of psychological capital and reports of job satisfaction among administrative personnel at a private institution of higher education. EdD dissertation, University of Hartford.
Moore, H. L. (2012). Ethical climate, organizational commitment, and job satisfaction of full-time faculty members. EdD disserta- tion, East Tennessee State University.
Zahedi, K. J. (2010). Middle school teacher satisfaction with response to intervention (RtI): An assessment between inception and implementation. PhD dissertation, State University of New York at Albany.
Job Diagnostic Survey: Section 1
1. To what extent does your job require you to work closely with other people (either clients, or people in related jobs in your organization)?
- 1. Very little; dealing with other people is not at all necessary in doing the job.
- 4. Moderately; some dealing with others is necessary.
- 7. Very much; dealing with other people is an absolutely essential and crucial part of doing the job.
2. How much autonomy is there in your job? That is, to what extent does your job permit you to decide on your own
how to go about doing the work?
- 1. Very little; the job gives me almost no personal “say” about how and when the work is done.
- 4. Moderate autonomy; many things are standardized and not under my control, but I can make some decisions about the work.
- 7. Very much; the job gives me almost complete responsibility for deciding how and when the work is done.
3. To what extent does your job involve doing a “whole” and identifiable piece of work? That is, is the job a complete piece of work that has an obvious beginning and end? Or is it only a small part of the overall piece of work, which is finished by other people or by automatic machines?
- 1. My job is only a tiny part of the overall piece of work; the results of my activities cannot be seen in the final product or service.
- 4. My job is a moderate-sized “chunk” of the overall piece of work; my own contribution can be seen in the final outcome.
- 7. My job involves doing the whole piece of work, from start to finish; the results of my activities are easily seen in the final product or service.
4. How much variety is there in your job? That is, to what extent does the job require you to do many different things at work, using a variety of your skills and talents?
- 1. Very little; the job requires me to do the same routine things over and over again.
- 4. Moderate variety.
- 7. Very much; the job requires me to do many different things, using a number of different skills and talents.
5. In general, how significant or important is your job? That is, are the results of your work likely to significantly affect the lives or well-being of other people?
- 1. Not very significant; the outcomes of my work are not likely to have important effects on other people.
- 4. Moderately significant.
- 7. Highly significant; the outcomes of my work can affect other people in very important ways.
6. To what extent do managers or coworkers let you know how well you are doing on your job?
- 1. Very little; people almost never let me know how well I am doing.
- 4. Moderately; sometimes people may give me “feedback”; other times they may not.
- 7. Very much; managers or coworkers provide me with almost consistent “feedback” about how well I am doing.
7. To what extent does doing the job itself provide you with information about your work performance? That is, does the actual work itself provide clues about how well you are doing aside from any “feedback” coworkers or supervi- sors may provide?
- 1. Very little; the job itself is set up so I could work forever without finding out how well I am doing.
- 4. Moderately; sometimes doing the job provides “feedback” to me; sometimes it does not.
- 7. Very much; the job is set up so that I get almost constant “feedback” as I work about how well I am doing.
Scoring: Various seven-point scales are used for the seven sections of the JDS. Section one of the JDS measures the seven job dimensions. Very Little: the job requires me to do the same routine things over and over again = 1; Moderate Variety
= 4; and Very Much: the job requires me to do many different things, using a number of different skills and talents = 7.
Job Diagnostic Survey: Section 2
1. The job requires me to use a number of complex or high-level skills.
2. The job requires a lot of cooperative work with other people.
3. The job is arranged so that I do not have the chance to do an entire piece of work from beginning to end.
4. Just doing the work required by the job provides many chances for me to figure out how well I am doing.
5. The job is quite simple and repetitive.
6. The job can be done adequately by a person working alone—without talking or checking with other people.
7. The supervisors and coworkers on this job almost never give me any “feedback” about how well I am doing in my work.
8. This job is one where a lot of other people can be affected by how well the work gets done.
9. The job denies me any chance to use my personal initiative or judgment in carrying out the work.
10. Supervisors often let me know how well they think I am performing the job.
11. The job provides me the chance to completely finish the pieces of work I begin.
12. The job itself provides very few clues about whether or not I am performing well.
13. The job gives me considerable opportunity for independence and freedom in how I do the work.
14. The job itself is not very significant or important in the broader scheme of things.
Scoring: Section two also measures the seven job dimensions. Very Inaccurate = 1; Mostly Inaccurate = 2; Slightly Inaccurate = 3; Uncertain = 4; Slightly Accurate = 5; Mostly Accurate = 6; and Very Accurate = 7.
Job Diagnostic Survey: Section 3
1. It’s hard, on this job, for me to care very much about whether or not the work gets done right.
2. My opinion of myself goes up when I do this job well.
3. Generally speaking, I am very satisfied with this job.
4. Most of the things I have to do on this job seem useless or trivial.
5. I usually know whether or not my work is satisfactory on this job.
6. I feel a great sense of personal satisfaction when I do this job well.
7. The work I do on this job is very meaningful to me.
8. I feel a very high degree of personal responsibility for the work I do on this job.
9. I frequently think of quitting this job.
10. I feel bad and unhappy when I discover that I have performed poorly on this job.
11. I often have trouble figuring out whether I’m doing well or poorly on this job.
12. I feel I should personally take the credit or blame for the results of my work on this job.
13. I am generally satisfied with the kind of work I do on this job.
14. My own feelings generally are not affected much one way or the other by how well I do on this job.
15. Whether or not this job gets done right is clearly my responsibility.
Scoring: Section three measures general satisfaction and internal work motivation. Disagree Strongly = 1; Disagree = 2; Disagree Slightly = 3; Neutral = 4; Agree Slightly = 5; Agree = 6; and Agree Strongly = 7.
Job Diagnostic Survey: Section 4
1. The amount of job security I have.
2. The amount of pay and fringe benefits I receive.
3. The amount of personal growth and development I get in doing my job.
4. The people I talk to and work with on my job.
5. The degree of respect and fair treatment I receive from my boss.
6. The feeling of worthwhile accomplishment I get from doing my job.
7. The chance to get to know other people while on the job.
8. The amount of support and guidance I receive from my supervisor.
9. The degree to which I am fairly paid for what I contribute to this organization.
10. The amount of independent thought and action I can exercise in my job.
11. How secure things look for me in the future in this organization.
12. The chance to help other people while at work.
13. The amount of challenge in my job.
14. The overall quality of the supervision I receive in my work.
Scoring: Section four measures specific satisfactions. Extremely Dissatisfied = 1; Dissatisfied = 2; Slightly Dissatisfied = 3; Neutral = 4; Slightly Satisfied = 5; Satisfied = 6; Extremely Satisfied = 7.
Job Diagnostic Survey: Section 5
1. Most people on this job feel a great sense of personal satisfaction when they do the job well.
2. Most people on this job are very satisfied with the job.
3. Most people on this job feel that the work is useless or trivial.
4. Most people on this job feel a great deal of personal responsibility for the work they do.
5. Most people on this job have a pretty good idea of how well they are performing their job.
6. Most people on this job find the work very meaningful.
7. Most people on this job feel that whether or not the job gets done right is clearly their own responsibility.
8. People on this job often think of quitting.
9. Most people on this job feel bad or unhappy when they find that they have performed the work poorly.
10. Most people on this job have trouble figuring out whether they are doing a good or a bad job.
Scoring: Section five measures the three psychological states as well as general satisfaction and internal work motiva- tion. It also measures general satisfaction and internal work motivation. Disagree Strongly = 1; Disagree = 2; Disagree Slightly = 3; Neutral = 4; Agree Slightly = 5; Agree = 6; and Agree Strongly = 7.
Job Diagnostic Survey: Section 6
- 1. High respect and fair treatment from my supervisor.
2. Stimulating and challenging work.
3. Chances to exercise independent thought and action in my job.
4. Great job security.
5. Very friendly coworkers.
6. Opportunities to learn new things from my work.
7. High salary and good fringe benefits.
8. Opportunities to be creative and imaginative in my work.
9. Quick promotions.
10. Opportunities for personal growth and development in my job.
11. A sense of worthwhile accomplishment in my work.
Scoring: Section six measures individual growth need strength. Would like having this only a moderate amount (or less) = 4; Would like having this very much = 7; and Would like having this extremely much = 10.
Job Diagnostic Survey: Section 7
1. a. A job where the pay is very good.
b. A job where there is considerable opportunity to be creative and innovative.
2. a. A job where you are often required to make important decisions.
b. A job with many pleasant people to work with.
3. a. A job in which greater responsibility is given to those who do the best work.
b. A job in which greater responsibility is given to loyal employees who have the most seniority.
4. a. A job in an organization which is in financial trouble—and might have to close down within the year.
b. A job in which you are not allowed to have any say whatever in how your work is scheduled, or in the procedures to be used in carrying it out.
5. a. A very routine job.
b. A job where your coworkers are not very friendly.
6. a. A job with a supervisor who is often very critical of you and your work in front of other people.
b. A job which prevents you from using a number of skills that you worked hard to develop.
7. a. A job with a supervisor who respects you and treats you fairly.
b. A job which provides constant opportunities for you to learn new and interesting things.
8. a. A job where there is a real chance you could be laid off.
b. A job with very little chance to do challenging work.
9. a. A job in which there is a real chance for you to develop new skills and advance in the organization.
b. A job which provides lots of vacation time and an excellent fringe benefit package.
10. a. A job with little freedom and independence to do your work in the way you think best.
b. A job where the working conditions are poor.
11. a. A job with very satisfying teamwork.
b. A job which allows you to use your skills and abilities to the fullest extent.
12. a. A job which offers little or no challenge.
b. A job which requires you to be completely isolated from coworkers.
Scoring: Section seven measures individual growth need strength. Strongly Prefer A = 1; Slightly Prefer A = 2; Neutral = 3; Slightly Prefer B = 4; and Strongly Prefer B = 5. A scoring key for the JDS is provided. In addition, a short form of the JDS is available.