Explaining the work of the ODL faculty through a job characteristic model (JCM)

Sadaf Chouhdary, Mehwish Farooqui, Aisha Ismail and Rahila Hanif
Virtual University of Pakistan

Lahore, Pakistan

People's tendency to perform a particular job is highly influenced by its nature; and job performance is ultimately enhanced in line with the performer's personal inclinations. These inclinations can be measured through a Job Characteristic Model (JCM), which explains a job in terms of skill variety, task identity, task significance, autonomy and feedback. Skill variety depicts the different types of skills required to perform a certain task; task identity assists in identifying its performer; task significance shows the importance of a particular task in an organizational setting; autonomy shows that authority rests with the performer of a certain task; and feedback is a response to the performance of a task. These factors do not represent the technical aspects of a job, but rather indicate the interest-factors of the job. The degree to which these job factors are fulfilled drives the behaviour of the individuals performing the particular job. Analysis of a job through JCM highlights the aspects which are satisfied and overlooked. This study focuses on the tasks of faculty member in an open and distance learning (ODL) institution in Pakistan through a questionnaire to identify the areas of JCM which require attention. As parts of JCM relate to the motivational level of the incumbents, this study also directs attention to motivating the ODL faculty members to perform even more effectively. The outcomes of the study contribute to staff development.