Organizational justice and turnover intentions: probing the Pakistani print media sector

Publication Date05 Aug 2019
AuthorMuzammil Hussain,Mohammad Saud Khan
SubjectHR & organizational behaviour,Global HRM
Organizational justice and
turnover intentions: probing the
Pakistani print media sector
Muzammil Hussain
Department of Management,
National College of Business Administration and Economics, Lahore, Pakistan, and
Mohammad Saud Khan
Victoria Business School, Victoria University of Wellington,
Wellington, New Zealand
Purpose To survive in this competitive era of modern business environment, organizations have to
constantly develop, adapt and react to new challenges. Therefore, it is critical for organizations to create a
sense of justice and involve their employees in business activities; thereby achieving the organizations
strategic goals. The purpose of this paper is to investigate the impact of organizational justice (OJ) on job
turnover behavior of employees within the print media sector of Pakistan.
Design/methodology/approach The study employs a quantitative methodology. It uses a sample of 402
employees from the newspaper industry to test hypotheses using regression analysis.
Findings Results indicate that perceived distributive justice, procedural justice and informational justice
have a negative relationship with turnover intentions of employees (as hypothesized) whereas; interpersonal
justice did not result in a significant relationship.
Originality/value The present study is one of the first within a Pakistani context in print media sector, aiming
to examine the relationship of OJ (addressing all of its dimensions) and intentions to leave the organization.
Keywords Pakistan, Organizational behaviour, Employee turnover, Intensions, Organizational justice,
Print media
Paper type Research paper
Is it fair that he gets paid more than I do for the same job?
Nobody told us why we cant make copies anymore, thats just not fair.
Thats it, I quitIm so tired of being treated unfairly here.(Nowakowski and Conlon, 2005, p. 4)
Research on organizational justice (OJ) has received focus since the last few decades
(Colquitt et al., 2001) with scholars from different academic areas exploring the concept and
its associations (Meisler, 2013). OJ is a professed perception of fairness (Byrne and
Cropanzano, 2001), which categorizes employeesfeelings on the subject of treatment within
an organization. Individuals are interested in three kinds of justice, i.e., DJ, procedural justice
and interactional justice. DJ pertains to the distributions and allocation of resources. It is
also explained as the distribution of compensation, rewards and other benefits that meet up
expectations of employees with respect to their inputs (Crow et al., 2012). Procedural justice
involves the process of distribution and allocation of resources among the employees, which
relates to the decision-making process (Dayan and DiBenedetto, 2008). The third dimension
(interactional justice) deals with the interpersonal behavior vis-à-vis the supervisor and other
peers at the workplace (Leung, 2014).
Turnover intentions have been considered as cognizant and deliberate intimidations to
leave the organization in future (Aquino et al., 1997; Mayfield and Mayfield, 2007). Earlier
research studies provide consistent support for employee turnover intentions as a predictor
Evidence-based HRM: a Global
Forum for Empirical Scholarship
Vol. 7 No. 2, 2019
pp. 180-197
© Emerald PublishingLimited
DOI 10.1108/EBHRM-04-2018-0030
Received 27 April 2018
Revised 20 September 2018
30 September 2018
Accepted 1 October 2018
The current issue and full text archive of this journal is available on Emerald Insight at:
of an employees actual voluntary turnover (Bluedorn, 1982; Mobley, 1977). High voluntary
turnover is associated with negative organizational behavior. According to Mobley (1982)
and Cascio (1991), voluntary turnover is an important managerial issue because of the cost
associated with quitting and hiring of employees (Zaman et al., 2010) in relation to personal,
work unit and organizational readjustment. Although voluntary turnover could occur for
various cases, prior research studies indicate that an employees turnover intention is seen
as one of the important antecedents of lowered job commitment (Malinen et al., 2013).
Voluntary turnover is a problem often faced by organizations today and organizations lose
their competitive lead in the form of potential employees (Chou, 2009). Employee turnover
creates a negative impact on existing employees by increasing pressure of workload and
demoralizing them (Zulqarnain and Hassan, 2012).
Print media/newspaper industry
The role of OJ concerning employeesperceptions about fairness at the workplace has
become more significant in Pakistan than ever during the recent era. Print media is an
important industrial sector of Pakistan, which has a significant impact on shaping the
public opinion, highlighting political and socio-economic issues of the country: promoting
human rights and raising voice for the poor (McChesney, 2008). Keeping in view the
importance of media in the country, it is pertinent to mention that Pakistan had only a few
newspaper houses and one electronic media channel (state-controlled Pakistan Television
in past). After 2002, media achieved greater independence to express its ideas; with more
than 100 TV channels (including 15 major news channels) obtained a license from Pakistan
Electronic Media Regulatory Authority (Rasul and McDowell, 2012). Due to greater
awareness, globalization and advancement in information technology, journalists have
become more concerned about fair treatment at the workplace. Despite its crucial role, the
print media sector of Pakistan is attributed to inequality in compensation and voice in
decision-making; regarding their matters. Regardless of the presence of Labor Laws and
Wage Board Award (an award especially for print media employees under Pakistani Print
Media Employees Act, 1973), protests on salary structure, poor working conditions,
mistreatment from media houses and a lack of participation in related administrative
matters are becoming common.
There used to be no law for the wages of the journalist at the time when Pakistan came
into existence. In November 1953, journalists raised their voices first time on the floor of the
constituent assembly. Consequently, the government formed a Press Commission in 1954,
which was responsible to resolve the issues of journalists. In short, the Wage Board Award
was established for the prosperity of journalists, which covers aspects surrounding the
implementation of minimum wage, the salary range for different designations, dearness
allowance, transport allowance, medical allowance, etc. The Govt. of Pakistan has
announced 8th Wage board Award until now under the notification No. 1 (1)/2004-P-11 (The
News International, 2014, September 13). The problems and issues of journalists are still the
same but increasing instead of decreasing because the major issue is the implementation of
the wage board award (Daily Dawn, April 09, 2018). Journalists working in some media
houses either do not receive their monthly salaries on time or in instances do not receive
their salaries for up to three-four months. Media houses often raise the pay of some selected
employees without any policy or annual increment ratio.
The importance of rural journalistsviewpoint cannot be ignored because Pakistan has
60 percent rural population, the journalists working in rural areas most of the time work
without salaries especially correspondents.Madni (2011) specified this issue in his article
titled as KP Journalists face problemspublished in weekly Pulse Islamabadthat the
greater part of the media associations do not pay rates to their provincial reporters and quite
often do not even pay the actual expenditures borne during news reporting (Babar, 2010).
Probing the
Pakistani print
media sector

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