The social construction of perceived fairness of performance evaluations: A case study at the shop floor level in the Scandinavian retail industry

Publikation: Beiträge in ZeitschriftenZeitschriftenaufsätzeForschungbegutachtet


Prior research on the perception of fairness of performance evaluation has treated the topic as a cause-effect phenomenon, mostly at the level of top executives or middle managers. Quite contrary, this study investigates how the perception of fairness of performance evaluation practices is constructed from a point of view of a shop floor worker. Using interviews from the Danish fast-moving consumer goods (FMCG) retail industry, we propose three primary reasons which collectively influence the construction of the perception of fairness. The first two are the contextual impacts of job design and logical mechanisms of workers. Both directly influence the construction of fairness, yet their impact is limited and strongly dependent on the job design and specific worker-manager relation. The third reason relates to feelings. Feelings have the strongest impact on overall perception of fairness. They form one underlying condition which is the wanted feeling of being appreciated. The findings of this paper may support middle managers when designing performance evaluation practices for shop floor workers. We also contribute insight into the process of constructing the perception of fairness, which is offered as an alternative to the established cause-effect studies.
ZeitschriftInternational Journal of Business Research
Seiten (von - bis)83-100
Anzahl der Seiten18
PublikationsstatusErschienen - 2017
Extern publiziertJa