The effect of feedback on employee efficiency : A field study investigating if feedback can increase machine operators’ motivation and productivity

University essay from Blekinge Tekniska Högskola/Institutionen för industriell ekonomi; Blekinge Tekniska Högskola/Institutionen för industriell ekonomi

Author: Viktor Rehn; Jonas Koskinen; [2018]

Keywords: ;

Abstract: This field study examined whether the effects of loss aversion exists at a manufacturing plant while providing machine operators feedback about their performance. It also investigates if nudging in form of feedback can affect the machine operator’s levels of performance and motivation. The field study consisted of a field observation and a motivational survey.  During the field observation, the machine operators were subject to feedback framed as either a win or a loss. It showed that feedback contributed to an increased performance level among all machine operators receiving feedback. However, the machine operators subjected to feedback framed as a loss outperformed the machine operators subjected to feedback framed as a win. It supports the assumption that the effects of loss aversion exist within the manufacturing industry.  A survey was handed out to the machine operators before and during the field observation measuring the hygiene and motivational factors according to Herzberg's two-factor theory. The result showed that the machine operators' overall motivation level increased, especially concerning the motivational factors. However, the increase in motivation was not statistically significant, and therefore a conclusion regarding that feedback contributes to an increased motivation level can not be done.  This method can easily be adapted and used by other manufacturing firms.

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