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Flexible work arrangement initiatives and commitment outcome of selected technology-based banks

Flexible work arrangement initiatives and commitment outcome of selected technology-based banks
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There have been dramatic changes in workforce demographics over the past few decades affecting employment relation. As a result, flexible work pattern became a common initiative used by organizations globally in response to various challenges faced in demanding industries like the banking sector.

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  1. International Journal of Mechanical Engineering and Technology (IJMET)
    Volume 10, Issue 03, March 2019, pp. 161–171, Article ID: IJMET_10_03_016
    Available online at http://www.iaeme.com/ijmet/issues.asp?JType=IJMET&VType=10&IType=3
    ISSN Print: 0976-6340 and ISSN Online: 0976-6359

    © IAEME Publication Scopus Indexed

    Oludayo, O.A.; Salau, O.P.; Falola, H.O; Atolagbe, T. M.;
    Ogueyungbo, A.; Fatogun, T.O.
    Business Management Department, College of Business & Social Sciences,
    Covenant University, Km. 10, Idiroko Road, Canaan Land, Ota, Nigeria
    Correspondence Author‟s Email: odunayo.salau@covenantuniversity.edu.ng

    There have been dramatic changes in workforce demographics over the past few
    decades affecting employment relation. As a result, flexible work pattern became a
    common initiative used by organizations globally in response to various challenges
    faced in demanding industries like the banking sector. Despite the efforts of
    management to facilitate quality life, concerns regarding how this practice contributes
    to greater commitment remain worrisome. Descriptive approach was used and the
    target respondents comprises purposively selected commercial banks staff in Lagos
    state. Data collected were through the use of questionnaire and analysed through a
    variance-based model. Findings revealed that the strongest predictor of flexible work
    pattern initiatives is flex location specifically telecommuting, followed by flexitime
    which comprises of the use of shifting swaps, flex-hours and compressed work weeks
    while flexitime-off had the least.
    Key words: Flexible work pattern, Flextime, Flex location, Behaviour, Commitment
    Cite this Article: Oludayo, O.A.; Salau, O.P.; Falola, H.O; Atolagbe, T. M.;
    Ogueyungbo, A.; Fatogun, T.O., Flexible Work Arrangement Initiatives and
    Commitment Outcome of Selected Technology-Based Banks, International Journal of
    Mechanical Engineering and Technology 10(3), 2019, pp. 161–171.

    Flexible working arrangements is commonly a practice in organizations where employees are
    apt to decide when and where they work from to fulfil their work obligations (Grzywacz,
    Carlson, & Shulkin, 2008). Giannikis and Mihail (2011) indicates that flexible working
    arrangement (FWA) is an essential aspect of many Work-Life Balance (WLB) initiatives that
    organizations across the globe use to comfortably support employees to balance work and
    family, and to actualize both their family and work obligations. These Work-Life Balance
    initiatives can also be referred to as an all-inclusive family friendly workplace practices.

    http://www.iaeme.com/IJMET/index.asp 161 editor@iaeme.com

  2. Flexible Work Arrangement Initiatives and Commitment Outcome of Selected Technology-Based Banks

    Globally, every human being struggles to survive in the wake of competing challenges
    due to innumerable wants but limited resources. As organizations strive to meet stakeholders
    demand of capital appreciation, increasing market share, survival in the industry and
    successful retention of valuable workers among others, workers too are in a stiff competition
    to utilize their time among competing needs such as attending to family affairs, social and
    political events as well as other personal activities which sometimes conflict with
    organizational goals. This particular situation always makes it difficult for some workers to
    have time for their private life once their office work takes most of their time. Similarly,
    organizations sometimes suffer from incessant absenteeism or inefficiency of some workers
    who engage in other social activities which affects their efficiency at work.
    Scholars from different disciplines, including human resource management,
    organizational behavior, psychology, economics, and sociology, have contributed to the
    theoretical development of our understanding of workplace flexibility. Despite the increasing
    attention given to workplace flexibility, previous studies such as Muchiti & Gachunga (2015)
    and Syed &Akhtar (2014) have emphasized on managing work-life balance in relation to
    employees‟ and the organizational performance, the study has discovered that most studies
    have not delved into how flexible work arrangement iniatives, a strategy for promoting work
    life balance, affect commitment outcomes of workers.
    In Nigeria, flexible working arrangement is increasingly embraced as a result of unstable
    economic conditions and ever changing demographics have pressurised organizations to adopt
    flexibility in retaining skilled individuals and preventing them from longer period (Mukururi
    & Ngari, 2014). The nature of work available sometimes also calls for more flexible work
    arrangements such as flexi-time, job sharing, maternity and paternity leave, and child care
    amongst others (Rabinowitz, 2016; Muli, Muathe, & Muchiri, 2014). Studies have revealed
    that managerial response to issues of flexible work arrangement (FWA) has become very
    crucial especially in the banking sector which contributes to 37.6% to Nigeria Domestic
    product (GDP) (NBS, 2016).
    The interest in and importance of flexible work arrangement is increasing especially
    among the banks‟ staff who have been found of using more time at office and on the road in
    cities making them arrive home lately and leaves early in order to beat traffic. Over the years,
    the substantial restructuring of the Nigerian banking sector has resulted to the increase in the
    demands from supervisors (managers) and customers with reference to the availability of
    employees and quality of service delivered (Ugwu, Amazue & Onyedire, 2017). Research has
    been able to identify various factors that influence work-life balance in a fast growing change
    of business in Nigeria. Lingard and Francis (2004), identified these factors to include work
    life conflict, workloads, weekend work and irregular hours.
    The competitiveness of the Nigerian banking sector has also contributed to the harrowing
    experience that the employees are subjected to in a bid to realise individual and corporate
    targets. Chief of these demands are overwhelming workload culture and long hours which
    often result in the neglect of other areas of life. Fapohunda (2014) affirms that the imbalance
    in the workplace follows a critical result on the society as a whole, the organisation as well as
    the individual employees. These demands have had negative impact on employees‟ family life
    leading to increase in marital conflicts, separation, divorce, and ineffective parenting amongst
    other issues (Vlems, 2008). It is against this background that this study examined whether
    flexible work arrangements has any effect on employee commitment across the commercial
    banking sector in Lagos state.

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  3. Oludayo, O.A.; Salau, O.P.; Falola, H.O; Atolagbe, T. M.; Ogueyungbo, A.; Fatogun, T.O.

    2.1. Flexible Work Arrangements defined
    This concept is interchangeably used with flexible work pattern initiatives. There is no
    universal definition of what constitute FWA. Flexible work Arrangement (FWA) are
    programmes designed by employers to show greater scheduling freedom for employees to
    perform the obligations of their positions. FWA simply explains „when‟, „where‟, or „how‟
    much one works. This implies that with FWA, employees have superior control over the
    choices of time or location (place) in which they work. It is different from some work
    arrangements that refer to employers‟ ability to change work schedules and lay off employees
    (Edward et al., 1996). There are three major forms of FWA: flexibility in arranging work
    hours, the location of the workplace, and the amounts of work hours. The flexibility in the
    scheduling of hours usually includes flexi-time, compressed workweek, and scheduling of
    breaks and overtime. Unlike employees who use flexi-time, compressed workweek, or
    working from home, employees who use reduced work hours and job sharing often change
    their employment status from full time to part time.

    2.2. Flexible Work Arrangement Initiatives Measures
    There have been dramatic changes in workforce demographics overtime. These changes have
    amplified greater demands for workplace flexibility. Hence, the major measures put in place
    by organisations to promote flexible work arrangement initiatives include:
    2.2.1. Flex-time
    This allows staff to decide or be involved in the decision pertaining to the start and end times
    of their working day, provided a set number of hours/days worked (Lazar, Osoian, Raţiu,
    2010). This provided enough space to attend to personal commitment and circumstances as
    the case maybe.
    Compressed Work Weeks
    This requires the ability to work for longer hours every day to lessen the number of days in a
    work cycle. Here, employers extend the daily operating hours of staff with less need to turn to
    overtime. This gives staff added advantage in having extra days off work such as lengthier
    weekends and abridged commuting time (Shagvaliyeva & Yazdanifard, 2014).
    Flexible Working Hours
    This gives staff the opportunity to determine and vary their start and stop times as long as
    they work the equivalent of a full work week. This approach permits staff to select the period
    they commence and complete day by day task, provided they finish in a stipulated number of
    hours (Perrin, 2001). According to (Perrin, 2001), flexible work hours can further be
    categorised into three which includes Part-time work (where workers work not as much as the
    full customary weekly or monthly hours, or less than an entire year, and is qualified for work
    benefits, such as, yearly and health leave), flexitime (flexible scheduling i.e. allows
    employees to choose, within set boundaries, when to begin and conclude work), and
    teleworking (This enables employees do their work without physical barriers).
    Banking Time
    This is a pragmatic and evidence-based strategy that focuses on the ability of the organisation
    to offer work flexibility by varying the work hours through job sharing and reduction in work
    Shift Swaps
    Swap permits shift-workers to exchange shifts with each other, enabling them the flexibility
    to meet both their work duties and individual needs without sacrificing one or the other.

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  4. Flexible Work Arrangement Initiatives and Commitment Outcome of Selected Technology-Based Banks

    Swaps happens automatically when a demand complement a cancellation between two
    employees (TalentCorp, 2013)
    2.2.2. Flexi-time off
    Flexibility in the place of work allows employees to perform tasks at places other than their
    primary workplace during their work schedule.
    Reduced Hours
    This refers to a situation in which an employee works less than a full work week with
    compensation adjusted accordingly.
    Extra Vacation
    Vacation to employee‟s provides merited time off from work. It is regarded as leave from
    work (or pay in lieu of time off) giving on a yearly basis and typically taken in specific of
    days or weeks. It has been discovered to increase mental and physical well-being as well as
    profitability and focus which includes taking time off responding to e-mails and work related
    issues. Matos (2014) describes vacation as taking time form work and work related activities
    for other planned purpose or objectives which is usually planned for in advance.
    Personal Days
    This is also referred to as general purpose leave (U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, 2009).
    Personal days is designed as a “catch-all” to provide the worker with time off from work for
    random purposes that might possibly be covered by other sorts of leave designs. It can be
    used for any purpose the worker chooses.
    Annualized Hours
    Annual hours operate by dividing hours worked over the year as opposed to the week or
    month. A yearly compensation is paid all the time however hours worked can differ, as
    required by the season or demand. The structure is designed such that employees work simply
    when they are required, thereby decreasing frivolous time (White and Wallace, 2008).
    Long-term Time off
    The motivation behind this strategy is to enable a worker give considerable or full time care
    for a spouse, partner, civil partner, parent or other relative who lives with and relies upon
    2.2.3. Flex-Location
    Telecommuting is a type of flexible work arrangement that can be formal or informal in
    nature that is, it can be stated in the organisational policy or be made through liaising with the
    manager. It is becoming a trend for work to be done from the comfort of the home instead of
    the regular form of going to the office which is referred to as „telework‟ or „telecommuting‟.
    (Lazar, et al, 2010). This is of great advantage to the employee by allowing them: coordinate
    their work day around their personal and family needs; to lessen work-related expenses; and
    to work in a less stressful and disordered environment.

    2.3. Commitment Outcomes
    Commitment is very important human resource behavior as it is tied to performance and
    achievement of corporate goals, even though defining commitment seem to prove a difficult
    task (Ahmad, 2013). Commitment can be applied to various areas which include occupation,
    and organization, supervisor and team, customer and association (Daneshfard & Ekvaniyan,
    2012). All the same, many definitions of commitment abound – some are similar in definition,
    while others differ. While commitment can be looked at either from the organization or
    employee perspective; this study focuses on the employee perspective, which covers three

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  5. Oludayo, O.A.; Salau, O.P.; Falola, H.O; Atolagbe, T. M.; Ogueyungbo, A.; Fatogun, T.O.

    areas – work commitment, career commitment and organisational commitment (Khan,
    Ziauddin, Jam & Ramay, 2010).
    Commitment is seen as the process whereby an individual is bound to some behavioural
    acts; thus one definition of commitment is “the degree of an employee’s intention to stay in an
    organization (Meyer and Herscovitch, 2001). Commitment is also defined as employees‟
    devotion to the organization (Akintayo, 2010); while Ongori (2007) defines commitment as
    the degree of employee‟s affective response and loyalty to the whole organization. On the
    other hand, employee commitment is simply defined as employee‟s attitude toward the
    organization (Zheng, 2010). Commitment is when an employee continues to work in that job
    and feels psychologically bound to the organization, regardless of whether it is fulfilling or
    not (Iles, 2005). A committed employee increases value to that organization and has tendency
    to be more determined in their work. Committed employees show positive behavior towards
    the organization.
    The significance of employee commitment cannot be over emphasized because high
    employee commitment leads to high levels of favourable work outcomes, especially if the
    conditions are right. This infers that there are antecedents of employee commitment, which
    leads to higher employee performance (Ali, 2010; Ajila and Awonusi, 2004); this is the
    reason why the subject of commitment has attracted much research as organisations depend
    on employees to gain competitive advantage and achieve excellent performance (Akintayo,
    2010; Tumwesigye 2010). Employees provide the intellectual capital base of the organization
    and are the primary asset of the organization: hence they must be motivated to enable them
    wholeheartedly contribute their time and energy to achieve organisational goals (Hunjra,
    2010). However, there are antecedents of employee commitment; these include leadership
    style (Lo, 2009); organizational fairness (Ponnu and Chuah, 2010); and corporate social
    responsibility (Ali et al, 2010); also job enrichment (Salau, Adeniji, & Oyewunmi, 2014),
    employee empowerment and compensation (Ongori, 2007) as well as educational level,
    personality and position (Camilleri, 2002).
    Affective Commitment (AF)
    Affective commitment, which is the best and most desirable commitment type for
    organisational benefit, has to do with employees‟ emotional attachment to an organization.
    Affective commitment is characterized by employees‟ acceptance of organizational values
    and willingness to remain and contribute meaningfully to the achievement of corporate goals.
    Employees that are affectively committed identify with organization in as much as
    organisational goals are congruent with theirs‟. Identification with the organization and
    internalization of organisational values are elements of the developmental stages of affective
    commitment (Muhammad & Basharat, 2011). It is noteworthy that certain factors influence
    affective commitment; among these are job challenges, clarity of roles and goals; also
    management response, dependability, feedback as well as equity, team cohesion and self-
    worth (Allen, 1997).
    Normative Commitment (NC)
    Normative commitment is the second commitment types and it is characterized by a feeling of
    personal conviction to remain with an organisation. The decision to remain is a function of
    moral feeling of obligation to the organization because of the benefits derived from the
    organization; irrespective of the effect of actual experience. An example of normative
    commitment is unwillingness to exit and work for a competitor in consideration of all that the
    present employer has done for the employee (Meyer & Allen, 1997).

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  6. Flexible Work Arrangement Initiatives and Commitment Outcome of Selected Technology-Based Banks

    Continuance Commitment (CC)
    Continuance commitment is the third type of commitment, which is characterized by a false
    desire to remain with an organization routed in consideration of fear of the high cost
    associated with exiting the organisation such as uncertainty of securing another employment
    (Meyer & Allen, 1997). Employees in this commitment category remain because it is needful
    as there is no ready viable alternative employment; thus they possess very high exit intension,
    which they implement as soon as opportunity shows up.

    2.4. Flexible Work Arrangement Initiatives in the Banking Industry
    Research have been able to identify that employee develop a positive perspective towards
    engaging in prospective work-life initiative that has enabling and empowering environment
    provided along with the policies which enables organisation adopt a work-life culture
    (Thompson et al. 1999). The identified Work-life balance initiatives such as flexible work
    arrangements, parental leave have been found to be significant for employees‟ retention and
    engagement particularly in a business environment that shows support for the family (Baruah,
    2013). According to Baruah (2013), there are low rate turnover among employees that make
    use of the child-care initiative provided in the organisation and are more likely to stick to
    established date of return for approved leaves (Kossek and Nichol, 1992).
    Customers and regulators over the years have been demanding modification and increase
    in service quality and delivery in the Nigeria‟s banking industry. This modification (Ojo,
    Salau, & Falola, 2014), has its influence in the banking world and have raised the challenges
    of work-life balance among employees. Prominent in the Nigerian banking sector is its late
    hour work culture and high work loads of employee in the sector resulting in a lag in other
    personal affair of the workers life. This thus, has a negative effect on the family system which
    significant value is placed on in Nigeria‟s society. The Nigerian banking sector is
    characterised by long work periods, pressure in the workplace and rigorous managerial
    supervision. Maximizing customer‟s satisfaction in relation to organisational behaviour might
    lead to more demand on the part of the workers to satisfy such demands (Ugwu, et al. 2017).
    Meanwhile, research conducted by Adekola (2010) attempted to identify and relate work
    demand to work-life conflict and it was discovered that career salience, hours of work and
    work involvement were associated with work interference and family conflict (Ugwu, et al.
    2017). Work-life according to (De Bruin and Dupuis, 2004) propose the importance of
    maintaining a balance in an employee work-life which has spanned over 20 years and have
    recorded measurable changes that has direct impact on the issue. Another is the demographic
    nature of the workforce has been notably modified from the predominant norm of been
    occupied by man. In recent times, an influx of the female gender are debunking the acclaimed
    notion of male dominated work zone.

    2.5. Theoretical Synthesis
    The segmentation theory was adopted and it assumes that work and family are two distinctive
    domains, indicating that work and family are separate spheres (Edwards & Rothbard, 2000).
    This theory facilitated understanding of establishing influence of flexible working schedules
    on employee productivity). Invariably, it explains further the needs to ensure moderate
    freedom is given to both the employees and the employers in discharge of their roles. This
    affords each party to have total control and plan its activity in line with convenient time to
    have the roles performed.

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  7. Oludayo, O.A.; Salau, O.P.; Falola, H.O; Atolagbe, T. M.; Ogueyungbo, A.; Fatogun, T.O.

    The population of this study comprises staff of selected Deposit Money Banks (DMBs).
    These technology-driven banks were selected based on several indicators such as international
    reckoning, branch networks, profitability index, total assets and earning and customers‟
    deposits. The banks were Zenith Bank Plc; Guaranteed Trust Bank; First Bank; Access Bank
    Plc; and United Bank for Africa Plc. The research was conducted in Lagos as it serves as the
    central commercial nerve of Nigeria and where 85% of the DMBs are headquartered. The
    population of the selected banks is known as 33,027 and using Kriejie sample size
    determination table, 339 was selected as the sample size which formed the basis of our
    analysis. The need for primary source of data was employed in collecting data through the use
    of a structured questionnaire. The items in the questionnaire were adapted from previous
    works. The instrument for flexible work arrangement was categorized into formal and
    informal initiatives. Data gathered were analysed using variance-based model (structural
    equation modelling/SPSS version 21).

    Confirmatory Factor Analysis (CFA) was conducted to confirm the development of the
    measurement scale as established and ensure the validity/reliability of the constructs. The
    CFA helps to measure the consistency of variables which is composed by several items. As
    Pablo Valencia mentioned, CFA makes sure that all the items included in the analysis belong
    to a pre-assumed factor. It can be observed that the use of CFA warrants that the results
    obtained are reliable, independent from the instrument’s validity. The result of confirmatory
    factor analysis is displayed in table below. The study followed the conditions as
    recommended by Fornell and Larcker (1981) and Bagozzi and Yi (1988) to assess convergent
    Measurement Loading Indicator Error Compose Ave. Variance
    Reliability Variance Reliability Estimated
    > 0.7 < 0.5 > 0.8 > 0.5
    Flextime: In my bank ….
    FT1 0.802 0.643 0.357 0.957 0.859
    FT2 0.865 0.747 0.253
    FT3 0.925 0.855 0.145
    FT4 0.810 0.656 0.344
    FT5 0.883 0.779 0.221
    FT6 0.889 0.790 0.210
    FT7 0.882 0.778 0.222
    FT8 0.805 0.649 0.351
    Flextime_Off: In my bank ….
    FTO1 0.698 0.789 0.211 0.947 0.800
    FTO2 0.792 0.626 0.374
    FTO3 0.776 0.602 0.398
    FTO4 0.789 0.623 0.377
    FTO5 0.669 0.448 0.552
    FTO6 0.762 0.581 0.419
    FTO7 0.801 0.641 0.359
    FTO8 0.885 0.783 0.217
    FTO9 0.796 0.634 0.366
    FTO10 0.888 0.788 0.212
    Flex_Location: In my bank ….
    FL1 0.765 0.585 0.415 0.810 0.826

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  8. Flexible Work Arrangement Initiatives and Commitment Outcome of Selected Technology-Based Banks

    FL2 0.883 0.780 0.220
    CO1 0.997 0.993 0.007 0.923 0.869
    CO2 0.788 0.621 0.379
    CO3 0.827 0.683 0.317
    CO4 0.922 0.851 0.149
    CO5 0.630 0.397 0.603
    CO6 0.972 0.944 0.056
    It can be observed from the above that the values of factors loading were above 0.70 while
    those below were not included in the computation. For the composite reliability, this indicates
    that the values met the requirements as recommended by Hair, et al., (1996) that the values
    are considered fit if they are above 0.8. The same is also applicable to average variance
    extracted whose values were also above the recommended thresholds of 0.5. After
    determining the normality of the data, Pearson correlation test was used to measure the
    relationship and the degree of correlation between the variables as shown in Table 4.

    Table 4. Results of Pearson correlation test

    Measures Mean Standard 1 2 3 4 5 6
    Flexible Work
    3.6871 .47007
    1. Flexitime_Off 3.5630 .74553 1 .354* .311** .229** .424** .278**
    2. Flex_Location 4.1929 .61145 1 .408** .352** .310* .408*
    3. Flex_Time 4.0249 .49107 1 .416* .384** .322*
    3.8862 .33071
    4. Continuance 3.9685 .67983 1 .360** .331*
    5. Affective 4.0682 .63292 1 .320**
    6. Normative 4.0026 .62196 1
    **. Correlation is significant at the 0.01 level (2-tailed).
    *. Correlation is significant at the 0.05 level (2-tailed).

    4.1. Structural Equation Modelling
    To support the normality and measurement model, structural model was also conducted to
    establish the degree of association among the variables as presented in Figure 2 and Table 5

    Table 2: Model fit index of Flexible Work Arrangements and Employee Commitment Outcome

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  9. Oludayo, O.A.; Salau, O.P.; Falola, H.O; Atolagbe, T. M.; Ogueyungbo, A.; Fatogun, T.O.

    Table 5. Results of the structural model
    Independent Independent Standardized Standard Results
    Coeeficient Error C.R p
    Variable Variable
    Flexitime_Off Comm_Outcome 0.173 0.027 2.069 * Supported
    Flex_Location Comm_Outcome 0.144 0.039 2.175 ** Supported
    Flex_Time Comm_Outcome 0.294 0.087 4.052 ** Supported
    The figure above explains the co-efficient path and estimates of the variance-based model.
    This indicates a significant and close direction of relationship between and among the
    constructs. The regression weights indicate that when flexible work arrangements go up by 1,
    commitment outcome goes up by 30%. It indicated that flexible work arrangements play a
    vital role in facilitating employee commitment outcome. The result is consistent with previous

    Variation in the significant role of demographic characteristics on Employee Commitment Outcome
    Test Statisticsa,b
    Gender Age Marital Highest Religion Job Years Spent in
    Grade Status Education Position the Bank
    Chi-Square .527 6.183 6.814 7.357 4.853 9.621 8.672
    Df 2 2 2 2 2 2 2
    Asymp. Sig. .632 .039 .046 .416 .233 .032 .013
    a. Kruskal Wallis Test
    b. Grouping Variable: Commitment Outcome
    Using employee commitment outcome as the dependent variables and the demographic
    characteristics of the respondents (gender, age, marital status, highest education, religion, job
    position, and years spent in the bank) as the independent variables. Kruskal Wallis Test was
    carried out. The test showed that difference in the perception of staff and management on the
    relationship between flexible work arrangement initiatives and job commitment outcome by
    gender (λ2 = .527, education (λ2 = 7.357, df=2, P>0.05) and religion (λ2 = 4.853, df=2,

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  10. Flexible Work Arrangement Initiatives and Commitment Outcome of Selected Technology-Based Banks

    P>0.05) are not statistically significant. This means that the difference in the perception of job
    commitment outcome are not due to gender, education and religion. While their perception of
    job commitment outcome by age (λ2 = 6.183, df=2, P

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