This study aims at investigating whether EI (Employees’ Involvement) constitutes the mediating link relating Industry 4.0 technologies to operational performance improvement in emerging countries. When manufacturing companies within this socio-economic context adopt Industry 4.0 technologies, they may either reinforce or undermine the importance of practices related to EI, hence affecting the level of operational performance improvement. In this sense, we carried out a survey with 147 Brazilian manufacturers that have already started to implement Industry 4.0 technologies concurrently with their existing continuous improvement programmes, which are highly based on EI practices. Findings indicate the EI indeed has a positive mediating effect on the relationship between Industry 4.0 adoption and operational performance improvement. This outcome suggests that the high-tech movement promoted by Industry 4.0 advent does not disregard the need for empowering and committing employees. This fact is also true even in contexts where employees’ condition may rise additional barriers for Industry 4.0 implementation such as emerging economies. Therefore, the implementation of Industry 4.0 seems to be a promising approach for assisting employees on continuous improvement and reinforcing the need for their participation and engagement, especially in manufacturers from sectors with higher levels of technological intensity.

The mediating effect of employees’ involvement on the relationship between Industry 4.0 and operational performance improvement

Portioli Staudacher A.
2021-01-01

Abstract

This study aims at investigating whether EI (Employees’ Involvement) constitutes the mediating link relating Industry 4.0 technologies to operational performance improvement in emerging countries. When manufacturing companies within this socio-economic context adopt Industry 4.0 technologies, they may either reinforce or undermine the importance of practices related to EI, hence affecting the level of operational performance improvement. In this sense, we carried out a survey with 147 Brazilian manufacturers that have already started to implement Industry 4.0 technologies concurrently with their existing continuous improvement programmes, which are highly based on EI practices. Findings indicate the EI indeed has a positive mediating effect on the relationship between Industry 4.0 adoption and operational performance improvement. This outcome suggests that the high-tech movement promoted by Industry 4.0 advent does not disregard the need for empowering and committing employees. This fact is also true even in contexts where employees’ condition may rise additional barriers for Industry 4.0 implementation such as emerging economies. Therefore, the implementation of Industry 4.0 seems to be a promising approach for assisting employees on continuous improvement and reinforcing the need for their participation and engagement, especially in manufacturers from sectors with higher levels of technological intensity.
2021
emerging economies
employees’ involvement
Industry 4.0
mediating effect
operational performance
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: https://hdl.handle.net/11311/1170409
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