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A Survey and Empirical Study of Employee Satisfaction

in Growing Small and Micro Businesses




Ou yang zhen an (1)
Economic and management department
Hunan Womens University
Changsha,china
e-mail:9119053@qq.com

Tan hong fang(2)
Business department
Hunan International Economics University
Changsha,china
e-mail:278645046@qq.com


Abstract-This paper, on the basis of the previous studies and the
features of the growing small and micro businesses, presents the
evaluation index system of employee satisfaction in these types of
companies. It uses an anonymous questionnaire survey approach
to survey the enterprise employee satisfaction, and adopts the
AHP-Fuzzy method to get statistical analysis on samples,
drawing an integrated staff satisfaction of 3.19 points in the
growing small and micro businesses, namely" almost
satisfaction", in which the" work group satisfaction" ranks the
highest score (4.016 points), and the job reward satisfaction"
the lowest (2.571 points). In addition, using the same method to
classify and calculate the employee satisfaction, it finds that in
the employee age category, staff satisfaction of 30-year-old or
over is the highest (3.451); In the light of the working seniority in
the enterprise, namely the length of service category, the
satisfaction of employees working 2-3 years in the company is the
lowest(2.501); according to the staff qualifications category, the
satisfaction of employees with lower College education is the
lowest (2.932); in family status category, unmarried staff
satisfaction is the lowest (2.941); according to the position in
hierarchy category, general staff satisfaction is the lowest (2.901
points).
Keywords-Employee satisfaction; small and micro
businesses; Fuzzy comprehensive evaluation; Analytic hierarchy
process
These guidelines inc In modern society, small and micro
businesses are more and more important in national
economy. In terms of their economic or social contribution,
numerous small and micro businesses are playing a positive
role. Many scholars and managers are concerned about the
ability of sustainable development of small and micro
businesses. In the modern enterprise management,
employees are the most important and the most active
element of productivity, whose satisfaction is directly related
to the fact that whether or not the business is able to have a
sustainable profitability and development capacity.
Selecting the growing small and micro businesses as
objects, this paper, with scientific investigation and statistical
method to survey employee satisfaction, is trying to find the
current situation of employee satisfaction and the
management problems in numerous small and micro
businesses in the hope of improving enterprise management
and employee satisfaction and providing reference for further
enhancing the enterprise's sustainable profitability and the
development ability.
I. THE CONSTRUCTION OF EMPLOYEE SATISFACTION
EVALUATION INDEX SYSTEM
Currently, many researchers have presented various
index systems on staff satisfaction survey from different
perspectives. For example, Brayfield & Rothe put forward
that enterprise staff satisfaction is surveyed from salary,
promotion, management, the work itself and the work group.
Rock (Locker) proposed employee satisfaction consists of
10factors: the work itself, paycheck, promotion, admission,
working conditions, welfare, self, managers, colleagues and
non-organization members. Ahmed (Arnold) and Feldman
(Feldman) presented that the structure factors of job
satisfaction include job itself, boss, economic reward,
promotion, work environment and work groups. Chen Chang
of Peking University and Xie Yongzhen and Zhao Jingling
of Shandong University proposed the staff satisfaction
evaluation index system includes 16 factors in 5 aspects: the
work itself satisfaction ( job fit, responsibility matching,
challenging work, work competence); the satisfaction with
the work reward( job recognition, career achievement, sense
of pay equity, promotion opportunity ); the satisfaction with
the work background (quality of working space, work time,
work equipped, welfare satisfaction ); the satisfaction with
the interrelationship in working ( cooperation and
harmonious degree, information openness ); and the
satisfaction with the whole enterprise (enterprise
understanding degree, the degree of organization and
participation)
In this paper, the selection of evaluation index follows
the principle of combining comprehension and specific, in
hopes of presenting detailed description of the current
situation of employee satisfaction from Multi- angle, much
flank, and striving to reflect the employee satisfaction in
specific situations in the growing small and micro
businesses. For instance, considering the relatively small
scale of the small and micro businesses and high personnel
flow rate, this paper adopts work security into the index
system. Based on previous experience and the specific
circumstances of investigation samples, this paper chooses
1first-grade indexes, 4 second-grade indexes and 14third-
grade indexes. The employee satisfaction in the growing
small and micro businesses is viewed as the first level
indicator; the second grade index includes four factors: job
2012 Second International Conference on Business Computing and Global Informatization
978-0-7695-4854-8/12 $26.00 2012 IEEE
DOI 10.1109/BCGIN.2012.16
34
satisfaction, job reward satisfaction, work group satisfaction,
and work environment satisfaction. Each of the second grade
indexes, according to their characteristics, selects a different
number of the third-grade indexes. Among them, job
satisfaction includes: job responsibility matching degree, job
fit and competence, work-life balance. Job reward satisfaction
includes: salary and welfare, work admission and appreciation,
learning and training, job security, occupation development.
Group work satisfaction includes: supervisor, Department and
team cooperation. Satisfaction with work environment
includes: company culture and principle, working time and
workload, work space and equipment. The above is displayed
in figure 1.


































Figure 1. Employee Satisfaction Evaluation Index System in Growing
Small and Micro Businesses
II. THE METHOD OF SURVEY AND SAMPLE SELECTION
A. The method of survey
Rating scale method is commonly used in employee
satisfaction survey. This paper takes the anonymous
questionnaire survey. The main body of questionnaire adopts
Likert five point scale method. Based on the three levels of
evaluation index it contains 99 questions. The questionnaire
doesnt present the three-level index system, only with
question items, in a random order to ensure respondents to
make choices objectively. Considering the different levels of
staff qualification, as well as the factor of investigate time,
items are all designed for best choice, including5 options,
respectively:" quite satisfied"," satisfaction, general",
"dissatisfied"," quite dissatisfaction". The score to each item
is respectively 5,4,3,2 and 1 point. In addition to the above
99 items, the questionnaire contain 5 items of personal
information which are: age, seniority, education and family
situation, and position in the organization level, Best choice
is adopted in order to analyze the different situations of
employee satisfaction.
B. Sample selection
In the selection of survey sample, as the country has no
clear definition for the growing small and micro businesses,
this paper, referring to the state classification standards for
the small and micro businesses and the Trial Measures for
the growing small and micro businesses ,determines to select
the sample enterprises, which at least shall conform to the
following 2 conditions: first, Less than 100 employees with a
clear organization structure, departmentalization and a good
reputation. second, the average growth rate of business
income and profit total within nearly 3 years is 20% or more.
On the basis of the above criteria, we selected 8 growing
small and micro businesses for full questionnaire survey. A
total of 500 questionnaires were sent out, and an actual 464
valid questionnaires were returned (item leaks, personal
information insufficiency questionnaire are considered
invalid).
C. Independent samples test and reliability analysis
Independent sample refers to two groups of samples
which are independent with each other. Using independent
samples to test can determine whether all items can identify
reaction degree to different objects of investigation. This
paper, first of all, according to the total scores of ordering
sample from low to high, gets top 10% of the high score
group and 10% of the low score group, then tests the two
groups difference in each item. According to the output of
the statistics software SPSS16.0, when the confidence level
is in 0.05, all items have passed the test for independent
samples.
Reliability, also known as credibility, refers to the
stability and consistency of the result measured by
measurement tools. In this paper, the questionnaire reliability
test will be inspected mainly through the Cronbach's
coefficient of this index. For Cronbach's coefficient,
Nunnally (1978) considered a coefficient lower than 0.35 as
the low reliability, which should be refused to use; the
reliability between 0.50 and 0.70 can be accepted; a
coefficient higher than 0.70 belongs to high reliability. This
study uses the SPSS16.0 statistics software to analyze the
questionnaire reliability. The results of analysis showed that,
the coefficient of the Cronbach's questionnaire is 0.791,
According to Nunnallys views (1978) to Cronbach's
coefficient critical value, this questionnaire has good
reliability.
Satisfaction
in the
growing
small
and
micro
business
B
work environment satisfaction B4
company
culture
and
principle
B41
working
time and
work load
B42
work
spaces and
equipment
B43
work group satisfaction B3
supervisor
B31
department
cooperation
B32
team
cooperation
B33
job satisfaction B1
job
responsibity
matching
degree B11
job fit and
competence
B12

work life
balance B13

job reward satisfaction B2
salary and
welfare B21

job
recognition
and
appreciation
B22
learning
and
training
B23
job
security
B24
occupation
development
B25
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III. STATISTICAL SURVEY THEORY AND METHODS
A. The Fuzzy Comprehensive Evaluation Theory and its
Practice
Evaluation of staff satisfaction mainly comes from the
subjective feelings of informants, which is mainly affected
by their personal factors. It is a multi-aspect fuzzy concept,
whose evaluation standard is not point forms but interval
forms, and most of them are the qualitative evaluation. Fuzzy
comprehensive evaluation method can be used to deal with
problems with many factors and evaluation criteria for
qualitative interval form.
The mathematical model of fuzzy comprehensive
evaluation can be expressed as:
) ,..., , (
2 1 n
b b b R W B = = D

In the model, B expresses the evaluation set,
j
b expresses the degree of membership of the investigation
object to the evaluation of j, W expresses the weight vector,
R expresses fuzzy relation matrix, D says the fuzzy operator.
This paper takes the operator ( , ) M , namely the
definition
1 1
, 1
m m
j i ij i
i i
b wr w
= =
= =

,
j
b
expresses the degree of membership of the investigation
object to the evaluation of j,
i
w says the i factor weight,
ij
r says the degree of membership of the i factor to the j
evaluation. For the comprehensive evaluation problem with
multiple factors, we can use the multi-level fuzzy
comprehensive evaluation, which starts from the bottom to
the up layer by layer operation, until finally gets the
evaluation set B. The k layer evaluation result is the degree
of membership of the k-1layer factor.
B. Index of Relative Importance Degree and Weight
Determination
There are many ways to determine the weight. mainly the
subjective method and objective weighting method.
Subjective weighting method is mainly used for the
qualitative index, and objective weighting method is mainly
used for the quantitative index. The shortcoming of the
former depends strongly on the empowering patients, while
the latters weakness is that researchers are lack of initiative.
Qualitative index attribute more in the employee satisfaction
survey index system, mainly in the growing small and micro
businesses and the indicators have special pertinence. In
view of the above reasons, this paper uses the AHP method
to determine weight.
Analytic hierarchy process, AHP for short, It emphasizes
the role of human thinking in the decision-making process,
quantifying the judgment or experience of the decision
maker, making the process of the decision-making
standardized, suitable for factors analysis of qualitative and
quantitative combination. Its main characteristic is to make
the complex issues in a variety of factors well-organized by
dividing into interconnected ordered levels and according to
an objective reality judgment on each level of relative
importance, using mathematical method to determine a
quantitative representation of all the factors in each layer is
on the order of importance value, forming each level the
weight of index set:
) ..., , (
, 2 1 m
W W W W =
,
m i W W
i
m
i
,... 1 , 0 , 1
1
= =

=

The AHP method can be divided into the following four
steps: setting up the hierarchy structure; on all levels of the
elements of the above level criterioncomparing the relative
importance of the two, and using 1 9 proportional scale to
transform comparison qualitative results into the quantitative
judgment data, constructing judgment matrix; and getting the
maximum characteristic root of matrix and the corresponding
eigenvector, determining the weights, and testing the
consistency, for each judgment matrix, according to the
characteristic equation
max
AW W = obtaining normalized
single sequencing weight vector W. If each order n judgment
matrix corresponds to the consistency of the judgment matrix
in proportion . . / . 0.1 C R C I R I = < , the matrix will be
with acceptable consistency
This paper, according to the above employee satisfaction
index system, and the AHP steps and methods, uses stratified
sampling method to select 25 delegates randomly from the
middle managers, first-line managers and general staff in the
target enterprise (participants required to have at least
college education, in order to facilitate understanding for
index system ), compares two of the index systems, and
assigns scores from1 to 9, then forms judgment matrix on the
basis of mode principle combined with median principle
values. Finally, it gets the relative important degree of each
index as well as the normalized weight index through
calculating, and through the test of consistency, C.R are less
than 0.1. Please refer to table 1 and 2.
TABLE I. THE RELATIVE IMPORTANCE OF THE THIRD INDICATORS TO
THE SECOND INDICATORS AND THE NORMALIZED WEIGHT
The second-grade
index
The third grade index
The relative
importance
normalized
weight W
C.R
Job satisfaction Responsibility matching 1.817 0.540

Work fit
and competence
1.000 0.300 0.032
Work-life balance 0.550 0.160
Job reward
satisfaction
Salary and welfare 1.220 0.266

Work recognition
and appreciation
1.203 0.263
Learning and training 0.624 0.136 0.0016
Work security 1.000 0.218
Career development 0.535 0.117
Work group
satisfaction
supervisor 2.466 0.648
Department cooperation 0.464 0.122 0.008
Team cooperation 0.874 0.230
Work environment
Company culture
and principle
2.154 0.581
satisfaction Work time and workload 1.145 0.309 0.012
Work space and equipment 0.405 0.110

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TABLE II. THE RELATIVE IMPORTANCE OF THE SECOND INDICATORS
TO THE FIRST INDICATORS AND THE NORMALIZED WEIGHT
The first grade
index
The second grade index
The relative
importance
normalized
weight
W
C.R
Employees
satisfaction
Job satisfaction 1.165 0.201

0.015

Job reward satisfaction 2.043 0.352
Work group satisfaction 1.752 0.302
Work environment
satisfaction
0.841 0.145

IV. STATISTICAL ANALYSIS OF EMPLOYEE SATISFACTION
SURVEY
This paper uses the multi-level fuzzy comprehensive
evaluation model to evaluate the employee satisfaction. The
steps are: first, evaluating the fourteen third-level indexes,
according to degree distribution probability on the issue of
satisfaction of the 464 effective questionnaires, determining
the items of membership degree, namely,
ij ij
r m n =
ij
m
expresses the selection item under each corresponding
evaluation, n is for effective questionnaire number; second,
attaching each item rights of the three-grade index to the
equal weight to get each item evaluation set (to derive the
weight data of the rest of the weight of index on the basis of
above by AHP method), and viewing the evaluation set as
the fuzzy relation matrix of the third-grade index to get the
evaluation results of the third-grade index; then, viewing the
evaluation results of the third-grade index as the fuzzy
relation matrix of the second-grade indicators to get the
evaluation results of the second-grade index; similarly,
viewing the evaluation of the results of the second-level
indicators as the fuzzy relation matrix of the first-level,
finally gets the overall comprehensive evaluation results of
the employee satisfaction. At the same time, according to the
evaluation set as: V={ quite satisfied, satisfied, in general,
dissatisfied, quite dissatisfied }, quantitative values for
V={5,4,3,2,1} quantized on the evaluation results, got
quantitative result of various index satisfaction, recorded as"
1
4 5 c is quite satisfied"," is
2
3 4 c satisfaction","
3
2 3 c general", "
3
1 2 c is dissatisfied","
4
0 1 c quite dissatisfied" ( for the quantitative
evaluation result ). Limited by the Length of this paper, the
results of three level index evaluation calculation process are
not listed here in detail, only the calculation processes of the
second-grade index and the first-grade index.
A . Job Satisfaction
The work satisfaction evaluation matrix is:

= =
003 . 0 282 . 0 517 . 0 167 . 0 030 . 0
004 . 0 022 . 0 513 . 0 155 . 0 306 . 0
044 . 0 228 . 0 522 . 0 207 . 0 000 . 0
) 160 . 0 300 . 0 540 . 0 (
1 1 1
R W B D

( ) 0.097 0.185 0.519 0.175 0.026 =

Based on the above formula, the degree of membership
of the job satisfaction is (0.097 0.185 0.519 0.175 0.026),
comprehensive score is 3.153, which claims the lower levels.
The distribution is normal. Evaluation of "general" about the
work itself satisfaction is accounted for 51.9%, the rest, i.e."
satisfaction"," dissatisfied"," quite satisfied" and" quite
dissatisfied" account for almost symmetrical distribution.
From the evaluation results of the third-level indicators,
dissatisfied for "job matching degree" gets 22.8%;
for"work-life balance" , 28.2%. Obviously, to develop the
growing model enterprise fast, the assignment of
responsibilities and staff work and life balance need to be
further improved.
B . Job Reward Satisfaction
The evaluation matrix of Job reward satisfaction is:
( )

= =
043 . 0 247 . 0 694 . 0 016 . 0 000 . 0
321 . 0 490 . 0 028 . 0 162 . 0 000 . 0
000 . 0 423 . 0 282 . 0 236 . 0 060 . 0
000 . 0 463 . 0 194 . 0 313 . 0 031 . 0
105 . 0 429 . 0 387 . 0 079 . 0 000 . 0
117 . 0 218 . 0 136 . 0 263 . 0 266 . 0
2 2 2
R W B D

( ) 103 . 0 429 . 0 279 . 0 172 . 0 016 . 0 =

Based on the above formula, the degree of membership
of job reward satisfaction is(0.016 0.172 0.279 0.429
0.103), comprehensive score is 2.571, which is "the general",
but the largest proportion(42.9%) is dissatisfied". From the
third-level indicators, in terms of "general", only" occupation
development" ranks quite high, reaching 69.4%. As for the
other four indicators, "remuneration and welfare",
"recognition and appreciation", "learning and training" and
"job security", the ratio of "dissatisfied" is relatively high.
Especially for the " job security index", the proportion of
quite dissatisfied" reaches 32.1%". Therefore, the growing
small and micro businesses should strengthen in maintaining
the stability of employees and improving staff reward
satisfaction.
C. Group Work Satisfaction
The degree evaluation matrix of group work satisfaction
is:

= =
030 . 0 012 . 0 105 . 0 593 . 0 287 . 0
036 . 0 230 . 0 542 . 0 180 . 0 012 . 0
006 . 0 019 . 0 126 . 0 0489 . 0 360 . 0
) 230 . 0 122 . 0 648 . 0 (
3 3 3
R W B D

( ) 009 . 0 043 . 0 172 . 0 475 . 0 301 . 0 =

Based on the above formula, the degree of the
membership of work group satisfaction is (0.301 0.475 0.172
0.043 0.009), the comprehensive score is 4.016, which
claims lower levels in "very satisfied". Viewing from
percentage terms,77.5% samples of work group is"
satisfaction" or over. Thus, the level of growing small and
micro businesses employees for work group satisfaction is
relatively high. But notably, in the third-grade index, 23% of
the samples are not satisfied with their departments
cooperation. Therefore, the growing small and micro
businesses should strengthen division and coordination,
promoting group work satisfaction in the process of the rapid
growth.
D. work environment Satisfaction
The evaluation matrix Work environment satisfaction is:
37

= =
038 . 0 200 . 0 545 . 0 207 . 0 010 . 0
026 . 0 216 . 0 603 . 0 138 . 0 017 . 0
000 . 0 169 . 0 559 . 0 257 . 0 015 . 0
) 110 . 0 309 . 0 581 . 0 (
4 4 4
R W B D

( ) 012 . 0 187 . 0 571 . 0 215 . 0 015 . 0 =

Based on the above formula, the degree of the
membership of work group satisfaction is (0.015 0.215 0.571
0.187 0.012), the comprehensive score is 3.033, which
claims the lower levels in satisfaction. Viewing from the
percentage, 57.1% samples feel general" for work
environment, 22.6% samples are satisfaction". Therefore,
the growing small and micro businesses employees are
basically satisfied with the work environment. But in the
third-grade index, 16.9% of the samples are not satisfied
with the company culture and system construction, 24.2% of
the samples are dissatisfied or quite dissatisfied with the
working time and workload, 23.8% of the samples are
dissatisfied or quite dissatisfied with the working space and
equipment. Therefore, the growing small and micro
businesses should improve employee satisfaction in the
construction of the system culture, working time distribution
and equipment configuration
V. OVERALL EVALUATION OF EMPLOYEE SATISFACTION
AND CLASSIFICATION STATISTICS
A. Overall Evaluation of Employee Satisfaction
The comprehensive evaluation matrix of the growing
small and micro businesses employee satisfaction
is:
( )

= =
012 . 0 187 . 0 571 . 0 215 . 0 015 . 0
009 . 0 043 . 0 172 . 0 475 . 0 301 . 0
103 . 0 429 . 0 279 . 0 172 . 0 016 . 0
026 . 0 175 . 0 519 . 0 185 . 0 097 . 0
145 . 0 302 . 0 352 . 0 201 . 0 R W B D

( ) 046 . 0 226 . 0 337 . 0 272 . 0 118 . 0 =

Based on the above formula, the degree of membership
of overall employee satisfaction indicators of the growing
small and micro businesses is(0.118 0.272 0.337 0.226
0.046), the comprehensive score is 3.191," which claims
lower levels in satisfaction" . Viewing from percentage,
"quite satisfied" samples account for 11.8%, "satisfied"
samples account for 27.2%, "the general" accounted for in
33.7%, dissatisfied" account for 22.6%, "quite dissatisfied
account for 4.6%. In general, the employees overall
satisfaction of the growing small and micro businesses is
basic satisfaction".
B. Results of Classification Statistics
According to the above statistical methods, this paper, on
the basis of personal information, classifies the sample
questionnaire to calculate employee satisfaction in order to
provide reference opinions for the enterprise managers,
Please refer to table 3.
TABLE III. EMPLOYEE SATISFACTION STATISTICS
age
Below 20 2.977
20-30 3.013
above30 3.451
The length of
service
Probationary period 3.713
1-2 3.073
2-3 2.501
Over 3 years 3.102
education
Below college education 2.932
College education 3.237
Bachelor degree or above 3.181
family
unmarried 2.941
Married without child 3.408
Married with child 3.129
position
middle managers 3.194
First-line manager 3.375
General staff 2.901

As is shown in the table, in the category of employee age,
the rate of satisfaction among 30-year-old or over staff is the
highest (3.451). in the category of working seniority in the
enterprise, namely the classification of length of service, the
rate of satisfaction among 2-3 year company employee is
minimum (2.501). In the classification of staff education, the
satisfaction of staff without college education is the lowest
(2.932). In the classification of staff family status, the
satisfaction of unmarried staff is the lowest (2.941). In the
position in hierarchy classification, the satisfaction of general
staff is the lowest (2.901 points).

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