Job Satisfaction and Personnel Mobility Reading Questions and Answers

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  • IELTS Reading Multiple Choice Questions
  • IELTS Reading Matching Sentence Endings
  • IELTS Reading Summary Completion

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IELTS Reading PassageJob Satisfaction and Personnel Mobility

Job Satisfaction and Personnel Mobility

Europe, and indeed all the major industrialized nations, is currently going through a recession. This obviously has serious implications for companies and personnel who find themselves victims of the downturn. As Britain apparently eases out of recession, there are also potentially equally serious implications for the companies who survive, associated with the employment and recruitment market in general.

During a recession, voluntary staff turnover is bound to fall sharply. Staff, who have been with a company for some years, will clearly not want to risk losing their accumulated redundancy rights. Furthermore, they will be unwilling to go to a new organization where they may well be joining on a ‘last in, first out’ basis. Consequently, even if there is little or no job satisfaction in their current post, they are most likely to remain where they are, quietly sitting it out and waiting for things to improve. In Britain, this situation has been aggravated by the length and nature of the recession – as may also prove to be the case in the rest of Europe and beyond.

In the past, companies used to take on staff at the lower levels and reward loyal employees with internal promotions. This opportunity for a lifetime career with one company is no longer available, owing to “downsizing” of companies, structural reorganizations and redundancy programmes, all of which have affected middle management as much as the lower levels. This reduction in the layers of management has led to flatter hierarchies, which, in turn, has reduced promotion prospects within most companies. Whereas ambitious personnel had become used to regular promotion, they now find their progress is blocked.

This situation is compounded by yet another factor. When staff at any level are taken on, it is usually from outside and promotion is increasingly through career moves between companies. Recession has created a new breed of bright young graduates, much more self–interested and cynical than in the past. They tend to be more wary, skeptical of what is on offer and consequently much tougher negotiators. Those who joined companies directly from education feel the effects most strongly and now feel uncertain and insecure in mid–life.

In many cases, this has resulted in staff dissatisfaction. Moreover, management itself has contributed to this general ill-feeling and frustration. The caring image of the recent past has gone and the fear of redundancy is often used as the prime motivator.

As a result of all these factors, when the recession eases and people find more confidence, there will be an explosion of employees seeking new opportunities to escape their current jobs. This will be led by younger, less-experienced employees and the hard-headed young graduates. ‘Headhunters’ confirm that older staff are still cautious, having seen so many good companies ‘go to the wall’, and are reluctant to jeopardize their redundancy entitlements. Past experience, however, suggests that, once triggered, the expansion in recruitment will be very rapid.

The problem which faces many organizations is one of strategic planning; of not knowing who will leave and who will stay. Often it is the best personnel who move on whilst the worst cling to the little security they have. This is clearly a problem for companies, who need a stable core on which to build strategies for future growth.

Whilst this expansion in the recruitment market is likely to happen soon in Britain, most employers are simply not prepared. With the loss of middle management, in a static marketplace, personnel management and recruitment are often conducted by junior personnel. They have only known recession and lack the experience to plan ahead and to implement strategies for growth. This is true of many other functions, leaving companies without the skills, ability or vision to structure themselves for long term growth. Without this ability to recruit competitively for strategic planning, and given the speed at which these changes are likely to occur, a real crisis seems imminent.

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Questions 1 – 2 :

According to the information in the reading passage, select the most appropriate of the given options (A – D).

Write the appropriate of the given options (A – D).

1 The current economic downturn…

A has serious consequences for personnel and companies which survive
B has serious consequences for companies which survive
C may have serious consequences for companies which survive
D has serious consequences for voluntary staff

2 Many of the staff members are not leaving their jobs because…

A they will lose their redundancy rights.
B they would join a new company on a ‘last in, first out’ basis.
C they are waiting for the economy to pick up.
D they are dissatisfied with their current position.

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Questions 3 – 8 : 

In questions 3 – 8, complete each sentence by choosing one of the possible endings from the list below, which best reflects the information in the reading passage.

Write the corresponding letter (A – K) for each question in boxes 3 – 8 on your answer sheet.

Note there are more choices than spaces, so you will not need to use all of them.

The first one has been done for you as an example.

Example: A lifetime career with one company…

Answer E

3 The “downsizing” of companies… _______________
4 Ambitious personnel… _______________
5 Today, new graduates… _______________
6 Long–servicing personnel… _______________
7 Management policy… _______________
8 Companies often care less about staff and… _______________

List of possible endings

A has often contributed to staff dissatisfaction
B are more special and less trusting
C has affected all levels of personnel
D use fear as a means of motivation
E was usual in the past
F career moves between companies
G reduce the layers of management
H feel uncertain and insecure
I increasingly have to look else where for promotion
J is a result of flatter hierarchies
K reward loyal employees with internal promotions

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Questions 9 – 13 : 

The paragraph below is a summary of the last section of the reading passage.

Complete the summary by choosing no more than two words from the reading passage to fill each space.

Write your answers in boxes 9 – 13 on your answer sheet.

Taking all of these various Ex (factors) into consideration when the economy picks up and people 9……, there will be a very rapid expansion in recruitment. Younger employees and graduates will lead the search for new jobs, older staff being more 10……Not knowing who will leave creates a problem for companies; they need a 11…… of personnel to plan and build future strategies. This is a serious matter, as 12……is often conducted by inexperienced staff, owing to the loss of many middle management positions. The inability to recruit strategically will leave many companies without the skills and vision to plan ahead and 13…… to achieve long term growth.

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Question 14 : 

Write the appropriate of the given options (A – C).

14 In your view, is the writer of the reading passage warning the reader about a coming…

A economic crisis
B personnel management crisis
C redundancy crisis.

Ready to improve your performance in Multiple Choice Questions (MCQs)? Click here to access our comprehensive guide on how to tackle MCQs effectively in the IELTS Reading section.

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Question No.AnswerQuestion No.Answer
2C9find confidence
5B12(personnel) recruitment / management
6H13implement / build strategies//structure themselves

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