How do organizational factors affect compliance?
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This thesis qualitatively covers how and why leadership, competence, responsibility and contractors influence compliance with procedures, and whether or not there are other factors that may potentially influence these organizational factors and the relationship between them. The theoretical approach in this thesis is based on an MTO perspective in regards to assessing factors that may influence leadership, competence, responsibility, contractors and compliance. Compliance with procedures is regarded as safety critical behavior, and the relationship between leadership, competence, responsibility, contractors and compliance has been discussed in light of the data collected and theory found on the subject. A qualitative approach has been used to answer the research problems in the thesis, and nine informants have been interviewed using semi-structured interviews. The informants have, between them, covered a large amount of roles and positions from within the organization where the study was conducted. Important findings in the study include support to the assumption that leadership, competence, responsibility and contractors are all connected to, and affect, compliance with procedures. Leadership will affect competence through leaders’ influence on training and development, and their responsibility to ensure a worker has the right competence. In the same way leaders affect compliance through keeping a focus on compliance and involving employees, as well as leading by example. It seems to be important to keep a balance between a worker’s responsibilities and authority, which can be considered to be a leadership task. Also leaders should ensure involvement, inclusion and follow-up of the contractors in order to facilitate compliance. Compliance with procedures was considered impossible without some sort of competence, and it seems important that workers feel a responsibility for what they do, in order to improve compliance. In regards to contractors, unfamiliarity with procedures and inhibitions to give feedback were some of the factors revealed that affected compliance negatively. Finally, the study revealed several other factors that influence leadership, competence, responsibility, contractors and compliance, as well as the relationship between them. The most important ones identified were availability of procedures, lack of knowledge, design of procedures, understanding the importance of compliance and conflicting demands.
Master's thesis in Risk management and societal safety