Theoretical perspectives

In the course of our research, we constructed and validated a research model that is grounded on the “job demand–resource (JD-R) model” [24] as well as “Conservation of Resource (COR) theory” [25] to describe how supervisors work-life support linked with work autonomy and workload are resourceful on influencing employees’ job performance. The JD-R includes two theoretical concepts: job demands (workload) as well as job resources such as social support (supervisor support) as well as job autonomy [26]. By investing in emotional resources acquired from supervisors through reshaping the work place condition for higher support resources and lower to moderate demands, human resource practitioners will be able to improve employees’ work-family balance and performance, which is a crucial role in the current model. Through two mediating mechanisms: health impairment and motivation, JD-R affects employees’ welfare or performance outcomes. According to the JD-R model, high workloads drain workers’ mental as well as physical resources, which results in health problems, low job satisfaction, and less performance [27]. Workplace resources (supervisor support) boost employees’ mental and physical energies during the motivating process, resulting in higher job engagement, satisfaction, and performance [28].

Also, according to the COR, time is the most finite and tangible resource; an hour committed to the job domain means an hour not accessible for other life spheres, diminishing the ability of people to meet personal and family needs. Studies have linked long working hours to WFC and lower life satisfaction [18]. In Tanzania banks, employees experience long working hours and an inflexible workplace, as explained earlier. It is assumed that excessive workload can reduce existing resources by draining emotional and physical energies or taking much of one’s time, or preventing a person from gaining new resources [9]. Hobfoll [25] mentioned that resources are personal kills, objects, energies, time, and money treasured by the individual.

Supervisor work-life support and employee job performance

Employee belief that their managers care about their well-being, respect their work, and are generally helpful is defined as supervisor support [29]. Mas-machuca [30] asserted that supervisor support in work-family/life is a representation of an employee’s impression of whether their supervisor is sympathetic to their nonwork interests. Similarly, we can refer to supervisor work-life support behaviour as the level to which employees trust that their superior is concern about their work and personal life demands (employee well-being) and hence assist them in achieving a healthy work-life balance. Work, life, and family support from supervisors can take many forms, including consideration of employees’ families and other personal commitments, demonstration of respect, understanding, sympathy, and sensitivity regarding family responsibilities, and the facilitation of employees’ feelings of ease when discussing challenges pertaining to their families [31]. In that case, effective supervision is regarded as a developmental and persuasive resource in organizational contexts. Supervisors are well-versed in a wide range of knowledge and are acutely aware of the demands of their subordinates [32]. More importantly, the supervisor fosters value congruence for both employees and supervisors and plays a critical role in maximizing employees’ organizational outcomes [33, 34]. Supervisors have the ability to function as a link between a business and its staff members, and the acts they do can dramatically affect how workers perceive the work-family balance policy of their employer [27]. As a result, it affects employees’ attitudes about work, which in turn impacts their performance. Supervisory support in previous studies indicate that is positively with job outcomes, e.g. job satisfaction and innovative behaviour [35], reduced turnover intention [36] and increased employee performance [5, 32, 37]. Also, a study by [27] on the association among employees’ supportive supervisor and performance via work-life balance reported a positive correlation among the variables. When an employee considers his or her supervisor to be sympathetic, cooperative and encouraging on matters of work-life balance, the person will attempt to reciprocate by contributing via his or her performance and by meeting the supervisor’s goals [32, 38, 39]. Employees feel heard, respected, and cared for when they have strong supervisory support in work and life issues. Supportive bosses recognize their subordinates’ relationships and a positive work environment. Employees who have confidence in their supervisors support them are more likely to be encouraged, contributing to a more favourable work environment. As a result, individuals may improve their work performance by more successfully committing to the firm [5, 40]. Employees who consider their bosses supportive report job satisfaction and performance [41]. In this scenario, we believe that when employees manage to maintain a good balance between their personal and professional responsibilities, they will respond by being committed to the organization. Therefore, this study contends that SWLS contributes to increased employee job performance.


Supervisor work-family/life support influence employee job performance.

Supervisor work-family/life support and work autonomy

Supervisor support for employee work autonomy refers to a “supervisor’s capacity to comprehend and appreciate their subordinates’ viewpoints, allow choice where available, provide relevant rationale when the choice is limited, encourage self-initiation, and relieve pressure” [4]. The Job Demand resource (JD-R) Model regards supervisor support a job resource assisting employees in achieving a healthy work-life [27]. That supervisor, as a resource, supports work autonomy by granting employees the freedom to schedule their work, make work-related decisions, and choose different work methods, provided they concentrate on meeting organizational objectives. Job autonomy can be regarded as a human resource practice, as well as supervisors can play a significant role in granting job autonomy to their subordinates. It is easy for subordinates to believe that their superior appreciates their contributions and is concerned about their well-being when they receive such valuable resources as autonomy [38].

To put it another way, when employees see their bosses are offering them valuable resources (job autonomy), they will interpret that they are supportive. In particular, subordinates may take this voluntary activity as a sign that their superior is supportive when a supervisor offers them job autonomy. Supervisors that have a high level of job autonomy are in a good position to provide additional resources for their staff, because autonomy influences their decision making capacity [42]. Mcguire [43] revealed that supervisors with sufficient autonomy may provide a conducive work environment to subordinates injured at work more than supervisors with limited autonomy. Hence, we propose that;


Supervisor work-life support behaviour influences employee work autonomy.

Work autonomy and employee job performance

Work autonomy is can be described as the “degree to which work gives a person significant freedom, independence, and flexibility in scheduling work and selecting how it will be completed” [29, 44]. Similarly, work autonomy refers to the amount to which employees may choose when, where, and how they do their duties [18]. Therefore, we can refer to job autonomy as how much workers believe they have flexibility in making job-related decisions, implying that the organization values their input and ability to make good decisions. Work autonomy is a multifaceted concept that includes three key elements: work methods, scheduling, and decision-making [34]. Theory (SDT) state that “creating a work environment where employees are inspired in their autonomy is not only a good goal in itself, but it also leads to increased employee satisfaction and thriving, as well as other organizational benefits such as increased work performance (productivity)” [45]. Beenen [46] explain further that self-determination is the initiation and regulation of purposeful activity along with an intrinsic-extrinsic spectrum. SD theory further posits that the level of motivation that employees have for their work has an impact on both their performance and their well-being. STD motivation is a strong predictor of a wide range of psychological outcomes, including intrinsic motivation, self-esteem, and general well-being; cognitive outcomes, including creativity and learning; and behavioural outcomes, including job performance, job satisfaction, engagement, and lower burnout [46]. Employees’ motivation is improved, and turnover is reduced when they have the freedom to choose their work schedule for completing specified tasks. Providing employees with the power to influence decision-making could improve job efficiency, effectiveness, and satisfaction.

According to previous research, more significant work autonomy contributes to being respected and trusted and a sense of pride in achieving organizational outcomes that reflect their decision-making talents. Work autonomy is among the several core job design features [22, 47]. Equally important, they opined that autonomy leads to a vital psychological state in which professional accountability for the task outcomes leads to increased job performance and higher internal motivation. This factor is positioned to result in a more motivated and effective job. Job satisfaction, performance at work, responsibility, intrinsic motivation, and workplace involvement have all been positively correlated with autonomy [48, 49]. Research on work autonomy has demonstrated a positive correlation among job autonomy and performance [22, 48]. That autonomy increases motivation and works efficiency.

Autonomy replicates the degree to which a job requires an individual’s self-determination, the right to arrange work or make decisions. Employee autonomy has a beneficial impact on the morale and efficiency of the workers. Generally, it is evidenced that this motivational impact of work autonomy is widely accepted, and it is an underlying premise in other research related to autonomy. Autonomy can be vital in escalating employee job satisfaction and, in turn, increasing job performance among bank employees. Thus, we hypothesize as follows;


Work Autonomy influences bank Employees’ job Performance.

Supervisor work-life support, work autonomy, and job performance

Supervisor work-life support (SWLS) primarily provides additional instrumental resources, e.g. knowledge as well as direct services, to assist employees to combine work with caring for family members or other vital nonwork activities [3, 50] and hence improved performance. As a result, supervisory support is widely considered a precondition for organizational support. Organizational Support Theory (OST) defines Supervisor Support (as organization’s agent) as the extent to which workers believe their organization recognize their contributions and is concerned about employees’ well-being [34, 51]. In terms of performance, supervisor support on employees’ autonomy is anticipated to improve and maintain their performance over time. The OST also states that when a company supports its employees, they feel obligated to help them reach their goals and objectives, and a supervisor is a crucial part of that support. A supportive supervisor believes in the subordinate’s talents and may convey this belief through vocal expressions of trust, appreciation, and faith. In this method, the supervisor can persuade the staff that they can achieve the set objectives by supporting work autonomy and thus, lead to improved performance [34, 52]. A person’s high level of autonomy as well as support will have the ability to make use of his psychological resources such as cognitive, which will, in turn, enable the person to generate ideas that are both original and beneficial to the individual as organization performance. Employees believe that accomplishing their responsibilities is advantageous to their self-selected goals when supervisors support their autonomy because they like the working process and value the outcome of the activity [38]. The authors discovered that work autonomy is linked to participatory management methods, individual values, and supervisors’ interpersonal orientation, all of which influence the degree of support for subordinates’ autonomy [53].

A previous study found that employees feel driven and answerable for their behaviour, respond favourably to work, and attain better job outcomes when they believe their supervisors supporting work autonomy [54]. However, the study by [34] revealed that supervisor support does not directly influence employee performance, which necessitates further investigation. As a result, we posit that supervisor work-life support behaviour, such as granting employee work autonomy, aids the underlying motivational mechanism that guides as well as energizes workers, resulting in various positive related work outcomes, specifically improved performance. Therefore, we hypothesize that;


Work autonomy mediates the association between Supervisor work-family/life support and performance.

Supervisor work-life support and workload

According to COR theory, workload reflects unfavourable working situations that contribute to resource reduction and emotional tiredness [55, 56]. COR theory states that fears to resource loss come in the form of role demands represented in excessive workload. On top of that, the theory further assumes that job resources such as supervisor support can lessen employee stress associated with a high workload. We propose that work-life support supervisor, defined “as the belief that one’s manager or supervisor value one’s work-life issues” [57], influences employees’ workload by providing emotional support.

Employees who receive more emotional instrumental support from their work supervisors in coping with life and family concerns can less prone to experience job interfering with their personal lives and causing them to feel burdened, even when the workload is high [2, 58]. Workers perceive supervisory support as an indication that their bosses care about their happiness and their needs, thus decreasing the resource depletion caused by work-family conflict and job demands (workload) [59]. As mentioned earlier, job Demand Resource (JD-R) regards supervisor support as a valuable work resource that assists employees in managing work and life concerns. In that scenario, we believe that work/life-supportive supervisors are a crucial resource that assist employees in coping with the effects of high workloads, especially given that supervisors are directly accountable for their employees’ workloads. Thus, the supervisor may act as a job resource [60] who assists employees in reaching a higher performance rate. Again, supervisor support can be regarded as the perception of a supervisor’s value for subordinates’ contributions and overseeing their well-being, such as shielding subordinates from heavy workloads [34]. Likewise, it is assumed that social support from supervisors will substantially impact workload. Supervisor work-family resources are believed to support stress resistance. They have good impacts on employees since they are frequently implemented in response to employees’ wants and values as well as fit under Hobfoll definition of resources [61]. Therefore, explains why performance and attitudes are directly correlated with organizational work-family resources.


Supervisor work-family/life support has impact on employee workload.

Workload and employee job performance

Employee workload may be the number of tasks allocated to or required from a worker over a given period. Thus, workload applies to all tasks concerning the time workers spend executing professional duties, obligations, and interests at work [10, 62]. The workload is also referred to as “a form of danger to resource loss that concerns time-related demands believed by employees to describe their occupations, such as the sense of having too many things to do within a limited time” [63]. The COR theory predicts that employees’ well-being will be jeopardized anytime they are threatened with a prospective loss of resources, suffers an actual loss of resources, or fail to acquire new resources after investing existing resources.

Employee workload is a critical factor in employee efficiency and turnover. Suppose their workload is below the normal workload. In that case, it will invoke laziness and allow employees to be idle and engage in unproductive practices such as community politics, with its consequent performance implications. Accordingly, when the workload is greater than the normal workload, which is termed role/work overload. As a result, the employee may become overwhelmed. In turn, this will result in threats such as exhaustion and resulting breakdowns, ill feelings, frustration, and eventually cause them to leave the job [16].

Role overload arises when a person is faced with too many tasks within the available time. Work overload can lead to increased job dissatisfaction, increased production, decreased performance quality, and feelings of anxiety, rage, and personal failure [28, 64]. According to COR theory [65] and JD-R, as explained earlier [66], we suggest that workload is a job demand that indicates consumption of time, energy, and psychological resources based on this paradigm. An increase in such demands necessitates using extra resources in the work environment. Because of the limited resources an employee has (time and energy), fewer resources will be available to meet other life demands [57]. A high workload depletes resources, which has an impact on employee role/job performance. Recently, employees are becoming increasingly worried about the amount of work they have to do, the stresses that come with it, and the quality of time they spend with their families. Thus, this situation leads to reduced employee morale and work performance. Siswanto [20] demonstrated that the workload is the determinant of employee performance, which could significantly increase employees’ performance, or the higher the workload, the higher the output.

The research on the correlation between workload and job performance is contradictory. Several researchers found that workload negatively and insignificantly impacts employee job performance [21, 22]. Others asserted that the highest performance occurs when the workload is moderate and that there is a positive correlation between workload and performance [19, 20]. A study by [19], for instance, revealed an inverted-U correlation between employee workload and job performance, meaning that output per worker grows as workload increases up to a certain level, beyond which output per employee drops dramatically. The findings from previous studies are contradicting, hence necessitating further study. Thus, we assume that a high workload would impact bank employee job performance. Therefore, we hypothesize that;


Workload significantly impact on Bank Employees’ Performance.

Supervisor work-life support, workload, and job performance

Employees who receive high supervisor support will experience low work stress and improved psychological well-being. Hence, more internal resource to deal with increased workload and thus meet the organizational goals of maximizing performance. In other words, employees are driven when they feel supported by their employer and respond by producing high-quality work [67]. An employee’s capacity to attain WLB improves when resources such as physical, cognitive, or emotional resources are more than demands. In contrast, this capacity declines when demands exceed the number of resources accessible to the employee [50]. Having a supportive boss may make it easier for workers to rearrange their work to accommodate family obligations, allowing them to have enough resources. Organizational job resources or social resources such as supervisor support, social networking, and psychological resources are essential in increasing workers job satisfaction and performance [27]. Supervisory support is likely to operate as a resource gained at the workplace, enriching the experience of family life and leading to improved job satisfaction and thus employee performance.

Simply put, when workers receive social support from bosses, they can expect a reduction in their burden, whether real or perceived. With the aid of the COR theory, this study proposes that supervisor work-life support stimulates colleague support, which might supply various resources to boost fair workload and, in turn, the high job performance of bank employees. Hence, the workload can mediate one’s daily work-to-personal life and family interference between supervisor work-life support and job performance. Because supervisor gives employees more resources to deal with the adverse effects of excessive workloads. Accordingly, we hypothesize that,


Workload mediates the correlation between Supervisor work-life support and job performance.

Employee job performance

From an organizational standpoint, performance is explained as the number of goods and or services produced in a certain period. When treated individually, performance can be defined as effectiveness and efficiency in achieving the aim and the pace of achieving goals [5]. Employee performance is an employee’s product, which they produce in exchange for tangible and non-tangible returns [68]. In this case, employee performance is all about employee productivity. The amount of contribution that employee makes to the organization is determined by their performance, which includes the quantity of production, quality of output, participation in work and attendance, and cooperative attitude. Employee performance is a significant aspect of any company’s operations. It assists a company in increasing and maximizing its human resource capabilities. As a result, outstanding service delivery and interaction are achieved, touching every part of the business. Thus, whether a manufacturing or service provider organization, performance is critical in determining its success [69]. A bank is a service-oriented business that places a high value on performance to determine success. To succeed, banks need to devise strategies that will promote employee performance. However, improving performance is dependent not just on employees’ knowledge, abilities, and efforts but also on organization and human resource practices as well as managers’ or supervisors’ efforts to create a conducive organizational environment that encourages that effort and success as well as enhance balanced work life. For all these reasons, it is thought that it is vital to investigate the elements that influence employee performance in all companies, particularly those operating in service industries (banks) where labour is heavily utilized.

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