Impact of high-performance work systems on individual- and branch-level performance: test of a multilevel model of intermediate linkages

J Appl Psychol. 2012 Mar;97(2):287-300. doi: 10.1037/a0025739. Epub 2011 Oct 3.


We proposed and tested a multilevel model, underpinned by empowerment theory, that examines the processes linking high-performance work systems (HPWS) and performance outcomes at the individual and organizational levels of analyses. Data were obtained from 37 branches of 2 banking institutions in Ghana. Results of hierarchical regression analysis revealed that branch-level HPWS relates to empowerment climate. Additionally, results of hierarchical linear modeling that examined the hypothesized cross-level relationships revealed 3 salient findings. First, experienced HPWS and empowerment climate partially mediate the influence of branch-level HPWS on psychological empowerment. Second, psychological empowerment partially mediates the influence of empowerment climate and experienced HPWS on service performance. Third, service orientation moderates the psychological empowerment-service performance relationship such that the relationship is stronger for those high rather than low in service orientation. Last, ordinary least squares regression results revealed that branch-level HPWS influences branch-level market performance through cross-level and individual-level influences on service performance that emerges at the branch level as aggregated service performance.

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Commerce / organization & administration
  • Employee Performance Appraisal*
  • Employment / organization & administration
  • Employment / psychology*
  • Female
  • Ghana
  • Humans
  • Interpersonal Relations*
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Organizational Culture
  • Personnel Management
  • Power, Psychological*
  • Surveys and Questionnaires