Author: Chan, King-shing Simon Thomas
Title: The design of performance management systems : evidence from the government of the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region
Degree: D.Acc.
Year: 2005
Subject: Hong Kong Polytechnic University -- Dissertations.
Personnel management.
Performance -- Management.
Civil service -- China -- Hong Kong -- Personnel management.
Department: Graduate School of Business
Pages: x, 206 leaves ; 31 cm.
Language: English
Abstract: This thesis was designed to test the effects of incentives on effort and individual performance, and how cognitive and motivational mechanisms and salient features of accounting settings may affect the incentives-effort and effort-performance relations. The theoretical framework for this thesis was primarily adapted from the conceptual framework developed by Bonner and Sprinkle (2002) based on theories and empirical evidence from experiments and controlled field studies in a diverse literature. Although Bonner and Sprinkle's (2002) framework basically focused on private organisations, it could be applied to examine the incentives-effort-performance relationship in the public sector as diversions between its performance management systems (PMS) and that of the private sector have been narrowed in recent years. In particular, the government of the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region (HKSAR) has introduced a number of PMS in recent years with an aim to improve its efficiency and productivity in delivering services to the public. This provides an excellent research site to examine what are the factors affecting the design of an effective PMS in the public sector, in particular for this study, the HKSAR government. This thesis adopted a mail survey through questionnaires, with the officers in the HKSAR government as the respondents. Based on the data collected from 137 usable questionnaires, a series of regression analysis was performed to test the three hypotheses positing the effect of incentives on effort and performance, the mediating role of cognitive and motivational mechanisms (in terms of expectancy and goal theories) as well as the moderating role of skill, task complexity and assigned goals on the incentives-effort-performance relation. The results confirm direct effect of incentives on individual performance and indirect effect through effort at a significant level and positive direction. In addition, the results offer limited support on the effect of incentives on effort as mediated by expectancy and goal setting. However, there are no significant moderating effects of skill, task complexity and assigned goals on the incentives-effort-performance relation. The results of this study, though offer limited support to the hypotheses, do provide some preliminary evidence in the real world setting, especially in the public sector. Specifically, this thesis decomposed incentives into monetary and non-monetary dimensions for analysis purposes. The results of the thesis confirm the significant motivational power of non-monetary incentives on individual effort and performance, which has not been widely documented in the literature. This thesis provides research implications for future accounting studies in terms of understanding the effects of salient features on incentives-effort-performance relation as identified by Bonner and Sprinkle's (2002) framework in both the private and the public sectors. In particular, the findings offer a basis for suggestions for improvement in the PMS of the HKSAR government.
Rights: All rights reserved
Access: restricted access

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