Connecting the SMART work design approach to sociotechnical design principles

While sociologists have a strong interest in the division of labour, the labour process, and sociotechnical design aspects, in relation to job and work design, psychologists stress the importance of human needs and human satisfaction. Sociologists underline strategic and organisational choices as conditional to the quality of work, whereas psychologists focus on person-environment-fit approaches. Recently, we observe a rapprochement in the field, with regard to the development of the SMART work design model; individual, team, and organisational elements are integrated into an approach that links human needs, job characteristics and organisational conditions. In Europe (particularly in the Lowlands and Scandinavia) researchers have linked sociotechnical design thinking to organisational design principles for production lay-outs and quality of work criteria into a modern sociotechnical approach. The paper intends to stimulate discussion about how to integrate elements of the SMART work design approach and the ‘modern sociotechnical‘ approach into an integral approach, in the sense that ‘HR professionals meet the engineers’


Peter Oeij, Steven Dhondt & Fietje Vaas: ‘Connecting the SMART work design approach to sociotechnical design principles’. Paper for: “Work Design for Success: Innovative Research and Leading-Edge Practice”; The 2024 Centre for Transformative Work Design Conference, Perth, Western Australia | 13-14 February 2024

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