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Attainment of a high level performance through productivity and efficiency has always been an organizational goal of high priority. In order to do, that highly satisfied workforce is an absolutely necessity for achieving a high level of performance advancement of an organization. Satisfied workers lead to more effort, better job performance, and then works harder and better. Thus every organization tries to create a satisfied workforce to operate the well- being of the organization. However, the total organizational performance depends on efficient and effective performance of individual employees of the organization. Therefore, every organization places a considerable reliance on their individual employee performance to gain high productivity in the organization.

This work shall attempt to discuss job satisfaction as it affects performance of the organization in the Nigerian economy. Meanwhile, Exxon Mobil Plc. Eket shall be x-rayed as the case study during field exercises.

Keywords: Job satisfaction, job performance, employee performance, employee motivation and employee motivation, employee commitment and loyalty, and labour turnover.

1.1     Background to the study

          Employee’s level of job satisfaction has been of concern to many because of its potential to influence the behaviour of the employee.  Employees desire one form of satisfaction or the other from their employment. If they cannot get it, dissatisfaction set in, and this may influence their behaviours and performance. Job satisfaction is the extent employee likes the job and will continue to perform under same condition. This is usually seen the degree of responses employees respond to assigned tasks, their preparedness to accept tasks and execute them to specifications.  A job-satisfied employee exhibits high degree of motivation, commitment and loyalty, and thus performs above average (Manafi, Gheshmi & Hojabri, 2012; Agburu, 2012).

Researchers in employees’ behaviours have over the years paid attention to factors that increase employee’s level of job satisfaction. In this, extrinsic factors especially financial factors have raise serious controversy.  Recent studies favour the use of financial factors over intrinsic factors to influence employee’s level of job satisfaction (Dada, 2006; Sharma & Bajpai, 2011; Agburu, 2012).  This implies that in recent times, there has been a shift in what employees’ desire as they accept any offer of employment.  It further implies that employees expect more of financial compensations over internally  derived satisfaction but as Christen, Iyler and Soberman (2006) explain, this is only for a while as the employee’s basic needs are satisfied, attention shift back to the intrinsic factors.  Thus, it pays an employer to have a proper mix of intrinsic and extrinsic factors in place.

Companies that have installed effective and efficient compensation system attract a lot of prospective applicants, apparently because they perceive the level of job satisfaction that exist there may be higher but do the worker feel the same way?  Exxon Mobil as an international firm may provide better rewards and compensation system than other local firms even in the same industry but does this create the level of satisfaction that can drive and sustain employee performance?  This is the focus of this study.

1.2     Statement of the problem

Employee commitment and performance has been intricately linked to the levels of motivation and job satisfaction the employee derive from the job (Khalid & Khalid, 2012).  Whether this is the case with employees of Exxon Mobil Plc., Eket is yet to be established.  Job satisfaction is an important indicator of how productive the employees are and their contributions to organisational performance.  A poorly satisfied employee is likely to be less productive and contributes less to group performance.  For this reason, organisations do well to keep their employees highly motivated by providing them with both intrinsic and extrinsic factors.  Over the years, management of Exxon Mobil has provide its employees with reasonable measure of these factors but are the employees satisfied with the level of motivation provided? And how has this translated to their productivity and the performance of the organisation?

As one of the oil companies operating in Nigeria, employees of Exxon Mobil are believed to enjoy lots of benefits compare to similar jobs in federal, states, local governments and even other private organisations, as a result, prospective employees scramble to secure job positions with the company.  Whether this contributes to the satisfaction level of existing employees is also yet to be assessed.  Thus, the focus of the study was the assessment of the satisfaction level of employees of Exxon Mobil Plc., Eket and the contributions to the performance of the organisation.

1.3     Objectives of the study

          The main objective of this study was to examine the relationship between employee job satisfaction and the performance of Exxon Mobil, Eket.  Specific objectives of the study were:

1.        To examine the effect of  job satisfaction on employee productivity

2.        To examine the effect of job satisfaction on employee commitment and loyalty

3.        To examine the effect of job satisfaction on the employee turnover rate

4.        To make useful recommendations regarding employee job satisfaction and performance of Exxon Mobil

1.4     Research questions

The ultimate question of this study was to examine whether relationship exists between job satisfaction and performance of Exxon Mobil, Eket.  The following were the specific research questions:

1.     Does employee job satisfaction affect employee productivity of Exxon Mobil, Eket?

2.     Does job satisfaction affect employee commitment and loyalty?

3.     Does job satisfaction affect employee turnover rate in Exxon Mobil?

1.5     Research hypotheses

The following research hypotheses were designed to guide the study;

Ho1:   Job satisfaction does not have any significant effect on employee productivity.

Ho2:   Job satisfaction does not have any significant effect on employee motivation.

Ho3:   job satisfaction does not have any significant effect on employee commitment and loyalty.

1.6     Scope and limitation of the study

The study centres on employee job satisfaction and organisational performance with particular reference to Exxon Mobil, Eket. Employee job satisfaction is interplay of various variables, the reason why this study covers employee motivation, commitment and loyalty, and turnover rate, which actually show the level of satisfaction employee gets from the job.

The anticipated limitations of this study are costs and time allowed to conduct the investigation, ability of the researcher to access the required information suitable for this study, and other limitations as may be encountered in the process of the study.

1.7     Significance of the study

          Organisational performance is made of the individual contributions of employees. The level of employee performance is dependent on the level of the job satisfaction the employees derive from the job.  Thus, employee level of job satisfaction is an important indicator of organisational performance, the reason why this study is significant. The study will also be significant in assessing the level of motivation and commitment available at Exxon Mobil and consequently the resultant job satisfaction employees get from the job since the firm assumed to be among the top highly motivating firms in Nigeria.  The findings of the study and the recommendations made will go a long way to harmonise and narrow the gap if any between the employees and the management of Exxon Mobil Plc. and by generalisation, other organisations.  The researcher will gain knowledge from the successful conduct of this study.

1.8     Historical background of Exxon Mobil Plc. Eket

Exxon Mobil Corporation (ExxonMobil) is the world’s premier petroleum and petrochemical company, operating to the highest standards of financial and technical excellence, business ethics, safety, health and environmental awareness. ExxonMobil, through its affiliates, has a presence in some 200 countries and territories.

The merger between Exxon and Mobil Corporations in December 1999 brought together three major companies in Nigeria: Esso Exploration and Production Nigeria Limited (EEPNL), Mobil Oil Nigeria plc (MON) and Mobil Producing Nigeria Unlimited (MPN). The three companies have notable history, proven experience and a strong record of contributions to Nigeria’s development, which were pooled together for improved performance. The three companies combined have over 2,000 employees, with over 90 percent being Nigerians.

Mobil Producing Nigeria is one of the largest oil producers in Nigeria. The Company commenced operations in Nigeria in 1955 under the name Mobil Exploration Nigeria Incorporated (MENI).  Mobil Producing Nigeria operates a joint venture with the Federal Government of Nigeria, through the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC). The Federal Government has a 60 percent share, with the remaining 40 percent being MPN.

Since 1961, when the Company was granted Oil Prospecting License (OPL) offshore present Akwa Ibom State, MPN has made visible contributions to the development of Nigeria's oil and gas industry. The company and its joint venture partner, NNPC, operate over 90 offshore platforms comprising of about 300 producing wells at a capacity of over 550 thousand barrels a day of crude, condensate and natural gas liquids.

A series of projects by the joint venture are targeted to increase the current average production level to above one million barrel per day. The east area additional oil recovery project represents a major investment in a mature operation to extend field life, increase oil recovery and eliminate non-routine gas flaring by injecting produced gas. The east area project’s 18,000-tonne gas compression facilities platform was set in place at the end of 2005, and set a world record when it was installed in open water using float-over technology. The natural gas liquids (NLG II) project, which has capacity to contribute 45 KBD of natural gas liquids to our total production, is an expansion of the NNPC/MPN joint venture’s successful Oso-NGL project, and involved the engineering, procurement, construction, start-up and commissioning of an offshore NGL extraction platform, undersea pipeline infrastructure and expansion of the JV’s existing onshore fractionation and storage facilities at Bonny river terminal.

Together with the NNPC, MPN maintains a very active community relations programme. It has made substantial contributions in the areas of health, education, sports, water supply, electricity and roads, especially around its operational bases in Akwa Ibom and Rivers States. Presently, the NNPC/MPN joint venture is focusing on sustainable development projects aimed at promoting economic independence for communities in our areas of operations. Through partnerships with reputable NGOs and other organisations, the JV is involved in capacity building, micro financing of small and medium enterprises, healthcare and agriculture. The NNPC/MPN Joint Venture awards 500 scholarships to undergraduate students in Nigerian Universities.

1.9     Definition of terms

Organisational performance: This is a measure of level of profitability, growth, production, sales or level of employee turnover over a certain period.

Employee performance: This is the measure of efficiency evaluated in output per input of an employee over a specified period.

Employee motivation: A psychological feature that arouses employee to act towards a desired goal and elicits control and sustains certain goal directed behaviours

Employee job satisfaction:  This is the extent an employee likes the job and will continue to perform under same condition. 

Employee commitment: The willingness of employee to work hard with positive attitudes towards the organisation.

Employee loyalty: A practical disposition to persist in an intrinsically valued associational attachment that involves a potentially costly commitment to secure or at least not to jeopardise the interest or wellbeing of the employer.

Labour turnover: An indication of employee’s intention to quit the employment.

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