Meaning, Need and features Job enlargement26/08/2022 0 By indiafreenotes
The definition of job enlargement is adding additional activities within the same level to an existing role. This means that a person will do more, different activities in their current job. For example, an employee who will now also manage her own planning where this was formerly done by her manager.
“Job enlargement involves performing a variety of jobs or operations at the same time. Thus it involves horizontal job loading as compared to vertical one in job enrichment.”
“Job enlargement focuses on enlarging jobs by increasing tasks and responsibilities. It involves expansion of the Scope and width of the job by means of a horizontal loading of certain closely related operations.”
Job enlargement is a key technique in job redesign, along with job enrichment, job rotation, and job simplification.
Job enlargement is often confused with job enrichment. However, there is a distinct difference. Job enlargement aims at broadening one’s job in order to make the job more motivating. Job enrichment is the process of adding motivators to existing jobs. This means that job enlargement is a way to do job enrichment but not all job enrichment activities are also considered job enlargement. We will explain this in more depth later.
- Creating a wider range of activities. In essence, job enlargement is about adding responsibilities to existing roles. This makes the job more varied, creating a wider range of activities.
- Reduces monotony. As a result of the wider range of activities, monotony decreases. People don’t do the same, highly specialized task 30 times an hour for 9 hours straight. Instead, they are more involved from end-to-end, taking a single product through multiple production phases, or even managing an automated assembly belt.
- Teaches a variety of skills and helping career growth. Additional job responsibilities require training and help in building additional experience. This teaches employees additional skills and is helpful in terms of career growth.
- Earn a higher wage. Adding responsibilities to a role often results in better compensation. Higher wages are a specific benefit for the employee.
- Gives more autonomy, accountability, and responsibility. The additional responsibilities lead to a number of motivational factors. Because the person is now responsible for multiple related activities, the person has more freedom over how they do their work leading to more autonomy. In addition, they are more accountable for mistakes and product quality as they experience more ownership and responsibility as they have more interaction with a single product or service (compared to when they were specialized).
- Job creep. Job creep is a continuous increase in workload as more and more tasks are added to a role. This can result in the job becoming unrealistic and overwhelming. Job creep happens when a job is continuously enlarged, potentially leading to stress and burnout.
- Lower quality. In line with the previous, enlargement could also decrease quality. However, this is not undisputed. Doing the same thing all day, every day can also lead to boredom. Also, if you’re only responsible for a small part of the product, you don’t experience responsibility for the whole product. Employees don’t have a whole product concept, leading to a lack of ownership and willingness to improve.
- Increased training levels and costs. Because job enlargement involves the adding of tasks and responsibilities that the employee didn’t have before, it often requires an increase in training levels and training costs. In addition, the employee will require some time before reaching the optimum productivity level.
Job Enlargement process
Job enlargement should be not be done in an ad-hoc way but it should properly thought through as part of the job design.
- Alignment with the aspirations
Job enlargement is a great means of increasing motivation but it can also lead to increased work load and stress so it should be used only if there is an alignment as per employee’s aspirations to handle more responsibility.
- Succession Planning
Succession planning is a great reason for job enlargement. It identifies the employees who are ready to take up the new role but can be groomed with new responsibilities in the current role which can act a good stepping stone for the new role or promotion.
- Skill Development
If new skills are being planned for employees as per the overall strategy of the company, then few good employees can be selected for new responsibilities. These employees can learn new skills and become future leaders.
- Proper Training Programs
Job enlargement should be accompanied by proper trainings for the employees selected. With new work activities, employees can find a lot of gaps which can be easily filled through correct training programs helping them take up the new responsibilities easily and with more confidence.