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Training and the commitment of highly skilled outsourcing workers: psychological contract fulfillment as a mediator

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Managing outsourcing workers is a major issue of concern for both researchers and practitioners. However, research on highly skilled outsourcing workers is still sparse. These workers establish two different employment relationships, one with the outsourcing company and the other with the client company where they daily work. In this study, we focus on training, which can be a particularly relevant human resource practice for these workers, since it is a crucial method of skill development. Relying on previous research on traditional employment, we hypothesize that the training provided to highly skilled outsourcing workers is significantly related to their organisational affective commitment, especially due to the nature of their career motivations. Additionally, we considered that it is crucial to focus on the employment relationship’s state, which lead us to assess if the relationship between training and affective commitment is mediated by the psychological contract fulfilment. Our predictions were tested on a sample of 185 highly skilled outsourcing workers from the Information Technologies sector. Data showed that employees who considered that they were receiving good training opportunities have a greater organisational affective commitment with both the outsourcing and the client companies. This significant positive relationship is mediated by the perceived fulfilment of balanced and relational psychological contracts, by both organisations. Transactional psychological contract did not have a mediating role between these variables. This study develops implications for contingent employment and human resource management research. It also provides relevant indicators for practitioners concerning training strategies.
Original languageEnglish
Publication statusPublished - 2010
EventWork, Employment and Society Conference of the British Sociological Association - University of Brighton, United Kingdom
Duration: 7 Sep 20109 Sep 2010


ConferenceWork, Employment and Society Conference of the British Sociological Association
CountryUnited Kingdom
CityUniversity of Brighton

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