Electronic Tools and Job Design

by Cathy Stasz

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This paper focuses on three questions as a first step in thinking about job-design issues: (1) What kinds of changes occur when electronic tools are adopted in the workplace? (2) Whose jobs change and how? (3) Who plays a role in job design? Drawing on two RAND studies of the implementation of information technology in the workplace, the author reaches two conclusions: First, a paradigm — a complex, structured model of work in organizations — is needed in order to explore the links between jobs, work groups, and the larger organization. Second, from a managerial perspective, the ability to manage change is vital.

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