Assessing The Current Forms Of Academic Literature Commerce Essay


According to Higgs, Malcolm, Renton and Hamish (2003) competition in the UK retailing sector has increased. They state the key aspects of completive advantage and business success is to realise that the contributions, motivation and behaviour of store employees. However Huddleston and Good (1999) claim that the success is dependent on a motivated workforce. Further to this information (Abratt, Bendixen & Drop, 1999) states that in the economy retailing plays an important role.

Based on this literature that managers as well as employees are particularly balanced this is due to the fact sale managers are major players as there are the ones that have a direct impact on corporate profitability as they are responsible for managing and leading a sales force in its critical direct revenue-generating activities (Czinkota, Kotabe & Mercer, 1997). Thus, their motivation should be a major concern for senior management.


Employee's motives socio-economic background and value system could all interact with how employees perform their work and react to efforts to influence their performance. However, the performance is established in how the employees are treated. Giving this complexity, work itself can be profound of having a number of different meaning that could be applied to the concept of work in modern life, as well as the inherent complexity of the human psyche, the link between managerial efforts to motivate employees to higher levels of performance and the actual performance realised by these efforts, is highly complex and only partially understood.

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All these changes on how organisations, including retail organisations, attempt to motivate their employees in order to have a competitive edge. According to Broadbridge (1999), there is a complexity of forces dictating transformations in retailing employment. Buitendach and De Witte (2005) add that UK organisations are being exposed more than ever to the effects of globalisation, and tremendous pressure is placed on organisations to improve their performance and to become increasingly competitive by finding ways of saving costs. According to Marais and Scheepers (1996), these cost-saving activities include cutting salaries and wages, which is the largest immediate source of cost savings.



Findings reported in the organisation's annual report and accounts (2008/09) for the DSGI highlighted that a fairly high labour turnover of retail managers and workforce (i.e. department managers, store managers, store assistant managers, sales colleagues) exists. This resulted in negative consequences such as sales staff not being managed for periods of time, an inconsistent quality of service delivered and the company incurring continuous replacement and recruitment costs.

As retail managers are seen as key players in the retail business and contribute to company profits, it is imperative that retail organisations retain, develop and constantly ensure that their retail managers are motivated, ensuring continuous high performance and effectiveness.


The difficult economic backdrop across Europe and reduction in consumer spending, particularly on discretionary products, has been well publicised. We expect these conditions to continue throughout the coming year in many of our markets. We are well prepared for this environment and continue to focus on managing costs, margins, stock turn and cash flow, alongside the Renewal and Transformation plan. With the improvements to our business we are well positioned to emerge from the recession with a more compelling offer for customers and are confident of our medium term target of achieving a 3% to 4% return on sales.

Furthermore, the organisation's perception survey results are an indication of the organisation reaching its strategic business imperatives, namely, profits, results and performance within its motivational environment. These focus areas are seen to be the key contributing factors in creating the motivational climate within the organisation. See appendix 1


The success of the business depends on the caliber of the people. The Dixon Group aims to recruit, develop and retain the very best. They want to motivate all employees to do their best work through rewards and recognition. Individuals will be selected, promoted and rewarded based on their abilities and according to the requirement of the job. Everyone will be given an equal opportunity to progress within the Group based on the above criteria. See appendix 1

As the key objectives of Human Resources in any organisation are to ensure fulfilled and competent staff, and to ensure an environment that enables the organisation to achieve business success through its people, it is important that retail organisations become aware of the factors motivating and fulfilling employees, especially retail managers, who are responsible for leading and managing the sales force.

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The employee motivation, what can I say (normal not energetic or looking forward to work). Come to work to what is required on the basic level. If employees to do their best work they are not appreciated and they promise they will receive rewards and recognition. To sum it up, quote from employee "all talk and no action". As to the limitation of this project i have provided in appendices of views of member of staff that talks about pay. See appendix 1

In summary, the organisation in which the research is conducted appears to berelatively successful in terms of its results with regard to its motivational environment. However, no specific research has been conducted on store level managers, which is imperative as they are key operational role players in reaching organisational objectives. Hence, the need for this research.


At present, the retail industry is a big part of the UK economy, no empirical information is available in the areas related to the UK electronics retail industry employees work motivation and job satisfaction.


The study is based on retail sales employees at Currys/PC World Megastore, and includes four different departments:

Computing (pc's, laptops, software etc.)

Vision (tv's, stands, cables etc.)

CE (camera's, camcorders, bags etc.)

White Goods (washing machines, tumble dryers, cookers etc.)

The sales figures differ substantially from each other based on hitting KPI's (Key Performance Indicators). This is due to a number of things, but for this analysis we are mainly concerned with work motivation and job satisfaction as they most important factors in regards to retail sales as I believe.

As I started gathering information about retail sales employees in Currys/PC World Megastore, I important factor kept coming up related to work motivation and job satisfaction based on non academic literature sources (newspaper article online).

"When I worked for them a few years ago I was proud to be at my branch, but today its a low paid low motivation business. All my old friends now just take the wages with no pride in the company. Lets face it are you going to get quality staff that are pressured for results on a low wage. Come on DSG make your staff happy and the world will follow... or maybe its too late the rot has set in..."

(It is therefore reasonable to argue that a high performance culture towards improved services delivery is dependant on a workforce that has high levels of motivation and commitment to such

a culture. )

(Given the of the framework retail sales conditions of service in the Public Service, the Department (Currys/PC World Mega Store) is therefore challenged to identify creative ways to increase work motivation and the levels of job satisfaction.)

(Creating this enabling environment includes enhancing the total work experiencing of staff, thereby creating a high performance culture as a departmental priority and strategic intent. This high performance culture will directly enhance the service delivery agenda of the department and provincial government towards the people's contract for effective and efficient delivery of services.)


The study is important as it clearly outline to managers why retail sales employees are important for Currys/PC World Megastore as well as showing sales employees an understanding so they can relate to it as well as being valued. This will enable them to know that someone out there cares which will influence the sales motivation as well as increasing job satisfaction which will result in increase of job performance. Based on this conclusion I have come out with following comments:

The management dilemma in many organisations in current economical downturn is how managers can cut cost and improve the motivation of employees to sell more as well as incress performance based on job satisfaction, so that companies employees and retain a fulfilled workforce that contributes to organisation.

(However, the inconsistent implementation of any initiative (for example a reward or recognition system) could have more negative effects than positive (Roberts, 2005). Those staff who really excel would perceive the initiative to be unfair if those who are perceived not to be excelling in their performance are not benefiting from such initiatives.)

(The findings of this research could be utilised to improve and encourage the development and utilisation of effective initiatives (such as recognition) to increase work motivation and job satisfaction levels. Furthermore, the findings could influence the department to consider a more innovative, yet structured approach to managing worker motivation, which could enable the high performance culture it strives to attain. This research aims at investigating the role that various factors in motivating employees and will explore which of these factors have a greater impact on employee motivation and job satisfaction.)

(To test how important theses motivation factors are in relation to employees. Since companies that fail to motivate and retain their valuable employees can suffer, this study will help managers to understand the needs of their employees and hence maximize Employee effectiveness and efficiency in order for the company to gain a competitive advantage.)

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In light of the work motivation and job satisfaction for the study, the objectives of the research are three-fold:

(To determine If there is a relationship between work content, payment, promotion, recognition, working conditions, benefits, personal, leadership/ supervision, general and work motivation and job satisfaction.)

(To determine which factors contribute to work motivation and job satisfaction.)

(To determine the impact of biographical variables on work motivation and job satisfaction.)


Based on the argument that I have constructed as a logical consequence in the study above, the following research questions have been formulated:

In retail sales department in Currys/Pc World Megastore, (is there statistically significant relationships between work motivation and job satisfaction also including (work content, payment, promotion, recognition, working conditions, benefits, personal, leadership/ supervision, general?)

(Do the nine independent variables (work content, payment, promotion, recognition, working conditions, benefits, personal, leadership/supervision and general) will explain the variance in work motivation and job satisfaction?)

(Does the impact of biographical variables have statistically significant differences in work motivation and job satisfaction (race, gender, marital status, age, educational level, years of services, nature of work, employment status and salary level)?)


The chapter has justified the topic of study and why it is worthy of study based on specific reference made to retail sales in Currys/Pc World Megastore. It has outlined the research as being a worthy by highlighting the problem area. It also identified factors which motivate retail employees as well as establishing whether there is a significant difference between motivational factors and (selected biographical factors.)


Chapter 2 provides a comprehensive review and critically discussion on the academic literature pertinent to the research questions that I have identified. Motivation and job satisfaction concepts are implemented and theories of motivation are discussed and supported with explanation to cement the understanding. Furthermore, the chapter also provides material to be analysed in chapter four in regards to (job performance and compensation/reward/incentives/recognition management.)

This review of literature which I have undertaken to answer question relating to chapter one relates to concept theories of motivation framework. It emphasizes the importance to explore the theories of motivation more extensively in dept. It proceeds on to recognising performance of employees and the output factor i.e. rewards and recognition by the support of managers in department in Currys/PC World Mega Store sales floor. This is very important as it emphasizes in literature which is pointed out in an argument structure that (there is a unique, tangible difference between these concepts, they are often used interchangeably.)