Work Engagement: Evolution of the Concept and a New Inventory

Angus C. H. Kuok, Robert J. Taormina

Abstract


To provide a more integrated framework for the study of work engagement, the literature on this concept was reviewed in order to develop a clearer definition of this construct that (instead of being based on the separate construct of burnout) is based on the original theory of work engagement, which allowed a new, more precise measure of work engagement to be created. The new work engagement items were tested to assess their psychometrics. Their integrity was tested via exploratory and confirmatory factor analyses, which retained 18 items for a three-component model having satisfactory fit indexes with three 6-item subscales named Cognitive, Emotional, and Physical Work Engagement. The reliabilities and validities of the new scales were also empirically tested, with reliabilities ranging from .78 to .91; and correlation tests yielded statistical support for the convergent, divergent, and concurrent validities of the new measure. The scales were also tested for application to organizations, with Self-Efficacy as a positive predictor that explained 10% to 16% of the variance for all three work engagement measures. Also, the three work engagement scales were all negative predictors of, and, together, explained 12% of the variance for Turnover Intention. Moreover, work engagement and burnout were empirically shown to be independent constructs.

Keywords


work engagement measure; cognitive work engagement; emotional work engagement; physical work engagement; validation; burnout; turnover intention

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