Perceptions regarding distributive justice in the South African financial service industry

Keywords: financial services firms, fairness, organisational justice, distributive justice, perceptions


Distributive justice is associated with the perceptions of an individual to the presence of equity and fairness in an organisation. The primary objective of this study is to critically assess distributive justice within the South African financial services industry. A quantitative research design was employed. Non-probability sampling was used and 436 usable questionnaires were returned. The empirical results revealed that trustworthiness of management, extrinsic rewards and organisational climate have positive influence on distributive justice, while employee engagement and two-way communication are founded to have no significant influence on distributive justice. Furthermore, distributive justice had a positive influence on organisational citizenship behaviour and reputable employee retention in the financial services industry.

Author Biographies

Elroy Eugene Smith, Nelson Mandela University
Full ProfessorDepartment of Business Management
Noxolo Eileen Mazibuko, Nelson Mandela University
Full Professor and Head Of DepartmentDepartment of Business Management
Viwe Mrwebi, Vaal University of Technology


Al-Tit, A.A. & Hunitie, M. 2015. The mediating effect of employee engagement between its antecedents and consequences. Journal of Management Research, 7(5):47-62.

Anik, L., Aknin, L.B., Norton, M.I. & Dunn, E.W. 2009. Feeling good about giving: The benefits (and costs) of self-interested charitable behavior. Harvard Business School Marketing Unit Working Paper No. 10-012. Available at SSRN:

Bikhani, N. 2017. The role of financial services in society. The South African Insurance Industry Survey 2107. Johannesburg: KPMG. 19-24.

Botha, C. 2015. Sharing insight on key industry issues. The Southern Africa Financial Services Journal. New York: Price Waterhouse & Coopers.

Butt, S. & Atif, M. 2015. Exploring the role of organisational justice as an antecedent of psychological ownership. Transactions on Education and Social Sciences, 7(1): 36-50.

Buys, P.W. & Van Niekerk, E. 2014. The South African financial services industry’s integrated reporting compliance with global reporting initiative framework. Bank and Bank System, 9(4): 107-115.

Carter, M.Z., Mossholder, K.W. & Harris, J.N. 2018. Congruence effects of contingent reward leadership intended and experienced on team effectiveness: The mediating role of distributive justice climate. Journal of Occupational and Organizational Psychology, 91(3): 465-485.

Cojocaru, D.N. & Stoican, C. 2010. Diagnosis of organisational climate as mean of management of communication. International Journal of Administration, 19(1): 5-26.

Colquitt, J.A. & Rodell, J.B. 2011. Justice, trust and trustworthiness: A longitudinal analysis integrating the theoretical perspective. Academy of Management Journal, 54(6): 1183-1206.

Colquitt, J.A. & Zipay, K.P. 2015. Justices, fairness and employee reactions. Annual Review of Organizational Psychology and Organizational Behavior, 2:11.1–11.25.

Cooper, C.L., Cartwright, S. & Earley, P.C. 2001. The international handbook of organisational culture and climate. Chichester: Wiley.

Crawshaw, J.R., Cropanzano, R., Bell, C.M. & Nadisic, T. 2013. Organizational justice: New insights from behavioural ethics. Human Relations, 66(7): 885-904.

Cropanzano, R. & Ambrose, M.L. 2001. Procedural and distributive justice are more similar than you think: A Monistic perspective and a research agenda. California: Stanford University Press. 119-151.

Cropanzano, R., Bowen, D.E. & Gilliland, S.W. 2007. The management of organisational justice. Academy of Management Perspectives, 21(4): 34-48.

Cropanzano, R. & Greenberg, J. 1997. Progress in organisational justice: Tunnelling through the maze. New York: John Wiley & Sons.

De Cremer, D., Mayer, D. & Schminke, M. 2010. On understanding ethical behaviour and deci-sion making: A behavioural business ethics approach. Business Ethics Quarterly, 20(1):1-6.

Dutton, J.E. & Ragins, B.R. 2017. Exploring positive relationships at work. London: Routledge.

Drahos, P. 2017. Regulatory theory: Foundations and applications. Action: Australian National University Press.

Gomes, E., Mellahi, K., Sahadev, S. & Harvey, A. 2017. Perceptions of justice and organisational commitment in international mergers and acquisitions. International Marketing Review, 34(5): 582-605.

Greenberg, J. & Baron, R.A. 2008. Behaviour in organisations. 7th edition. New Jersey: Prentice Hall.

Haliru, M. & Mokhtar, S.S.M. 2015. The mediating effect of perceived safety and trust on the relationship between perceived justice and customer loyalty in the Nigerian airline industry. International Journal of Management Sciences and Business Research, 4(10): 1-7.

Hausknecht, J., Rodda, J.M. & Howard, M.J. 2009. Targeted employee retention. Performance based and job related differences in reported reasons for staying. Human Resources Management, 48(2): 269-288.

Khan, I., Shahid, M., Nawab, S. & Wali, S.S. 2013. Influence of intrinsic and extrinsic rewards on employee performance: The banking sector of Pakistan. Academic Research International, 4(1): 282-291.

Haydin, M. 2018. The notion of equality. New York: Routledge.

Kang, D. 2007. Perceived organisational justice as predictor of employee motivation to participate in training. Research and Practise in Human Resources Management, 15(1): 89-107.

Kim, W. & Park, J. 2017. Examining structural relationships between work engagement, organizational procedural justice, knowledge sharing, and innovative work behavior for sustainable organizations. Sustainability, 9(2). doi:10.3390/su9020205.

Konovsky, M.A. & Pugh, S.D. 1994. Citizenship behaviour and social exchange. Academy Management Journal, 37(1): 656-669.

Lamont, J. 2017. Distributive justice. London: Routledge.

Lather, A.S. & Kaur, S. 2017. Proceedings of International Conference on Strategies in Volatile and Uncertain Environment for Emerging Markets. New Delhi: Indian Institute of Technology, 14-15 July 2017.

Lavelle, J.J., Rupp, D.E. & Brockner, J. 2007. Taking a multi-foci approach to the study of justice, social exchange and citizenship behaviour: The target similarity model. Journal of Management, 33(1): 841-866.

Ledimo, O. 2015. Development and validation of an organisational justice measurement instrument for a South African context. Risk Governance & Control: Financial Markets & Institutions 5(1): 27-38.

Lown, C.S., Osler, C.L., Strahan, P.E. & Sufi, M. 2000. The changing landscape of financial services industry. What lies ahead? FRB of New York Economic Policy Review, 6(4): 39-55.

Maiese, M. 2013. Distributive justice: Beyond intractability. Colorado: University of Colorado.

Markos, S. & Sridevi, M. 2010. Employee engagement: The key to improving performance. International Journal of Business Management, 5(12): 89-96.

Martins, N. & Von Der Ohe, H. 2003. Organisational climate measurement – new and emerging dimensions during a period of transformation. South African Journal of Labour Relations, 27(3/4): 41-58.

Moliner C, Cropanzano R & Martínez-Tur V. 2017. Organizational justice: International perspectives and conceptual advances. Oxon: Routledge.

Morsing, M. & Schultz, M. 2006. Corporate social responsibility communication: Stakeholder information, response and involvement strategies. Business Ethics: A European Review 15(4): 323-338.

Muchinsky, P.M. 2003. Psychology applied to work. Belmont: Thomson Learning.

Niehoff, B.P. & Moorman, R.H. 2010. Does perceived support mediate the relationship between procedural justice and organisational citizenship behaviour? Academy of Management Journal, 41(3): 351-357.

Neuman, W.L. 2003. Social research methods: Qualitative and quantitative approaches. 5th edition. Boston: Pearson.

Nwokocha, I. & Iheriohanma, E.B.J. 2012. Emerging trends in employee retention strategies in a globalizing economy: Nigeria in focus. Asian Social Science, 8(10): 198-207.

Noordin, F., Omar, S., Sehan, S. & Idrus, S. 2010. Organisational climate and its influence on organisational commitment. International Business and Economics Research Journal, 9(2): 1-10.

O’Brien M. 2017. Social work and the practice of social justice: An initial overview. Aotearoa New Zealand Social Work, 21(1-2): 1-10.

Ololube, N.P. 2016. Handbook of research on organizational justice and culture in higher education institutions. Hersey: Information Science Reference.

Organ, D.W., Podsakoff, P.M. & Mackenzie, S.B. 2006. Organizational citizenship behavior: Its nature, antecedents, and consequences. Thousand Oaks, CA: Sage.

Pettigrew, A.M. 2014. The politics of organisational decision-making. Oxon: Routledge.

Rani, R., Garg, P. & Rastogi, R. 2012. Organizational justice and psychological wellbeing of po-lice employees: A relationship study. International Journal of Advances in Management and Economics, 1(5): 183-194.

Rawlins, B. 2008. Measuring the relationship between organizational transparency and employee trust. Public Relations Journal, 2(2): 1-21.

Reiche, B.S., Cardona, P., Lee, Y.T. & Canela, M. 2014. Why do managers engage in trustwor-thy behavior? A multilevel cross-cultural study in 18 Countries. Personnel Psy-chology, 67(1): 61-98.

Resher, N. 2018. Fairness: Theory and practice of distributive justice. New York: Routledge.

Rhoades, L. & Eisenberg, R. 2002. Perceived organisational support: A review of literature. Journal of Applied Psychology, 87(4): 698-714.

Roy, S.K., Devlin, J.F. & Sekhon, H. 2015. The impact of fairness on trustworthiness and trust in banking. Journal of Marketing Management, 31(10): 996-1017.

Rubina, Y, Umar, F. & Fahad, A. 2013. Impact of reward on organizational performance: Empiri-cal evidence from telecom sector of Pakistan. Journal of Basic and Applied Scientific Re-search, 3(5): 938-946.

Rupp, D.E. 2011. An employee-cantered model of organisational justice and social responsibility. Organisational Psychology Review, 1(1): 72-94.

Rupp, D.E., Wright, P.M., Aryee, S. & Luo, Y. 2015. Organizational justice, behavioral ethics, and corporate social responsibility: Finally the three shall merge. Management and Organization Review, 11(1):15-24.

Samuel, M.O. & Chipunza, C. 2009. Employee retention and turnover: Using motivational variables as panacea. African Journal of Business Management, 3(8): 410-415.

Schnakenberg, A.K. & Tomlinson, E.C. 2014. Organisational transparency: A new perspective on managing trust in organisation: Stakeholder relationships. Journal of Management, March (1): 1-27.

Shah, N., Anwar, S. & Irani, Z. 2017. The impact of organisational justice on ethical behaviour. International Journal of Business Innovation and Research, 12(2): 240-258.

Smit, P.J. & Cronje, D.J. 2002. Management principles: A contemporary edition for Africa. London: McGraw-Hill.

Snelgar, R.J., Renard, M. & Venter, D. 2013. An empirical study of the reward preferences of South African employees. SA Journal of Human Resource Management/SA Tydskrif vir Menslikehulpbronbestuur 11(1): 84-97.

StatsSA. 2017. Economic sectors that contribute to South Africa’s GDP: Q3 2017. Pretoria: Statistics South Africa.

Sturges, P. 2007. What is this absence called transparency? Proceedings of the International Center for Information Ethics (ICIE) Conference. Pretoria. 5-7 February.

Taran, P. & Gächter, A. 2012. Achieving equality in intercultural workplaces. Dublin: Irish Human Rights and Equality Commission.

Thompson, N. 2018. Promoting equality. London: Palgrave.

Treviño, K.L., Butterfield, K.D. & Mccabe, D.L. 2001. The ethical context in organizations: Influences on employee attitudes and behaviors, IN Dienhart, J., Moberg, D., and

Duska, R. (ed.). The next phase of business ethics: Integrating psychology and ethics, 3: 301-337.

Trevińo, L.K., Weaver, G.R. & Reynolds, S.J. 2006. Behavioural ethics in organisations: A review. Journal of Management, 32(6): 951-990.

Veloso, E.F.R., Da Silva, R.C., Dutra, J.S., Fischer, A.L. & Trevisan, L.N. 2014. Talent retention strategies in different organizational contexts and intention of talents to remain in the company. Journal on Innovation and Sustainability, (1): 49-61.

Versosa, C.C. & Garcia, H.R. 2009. Building commitment to reform through strategic communication: The five key decisions. Washington: The World Bank.

Wan, H.L. 2017. Relationship between organisational justice and organisational citizenship behaviour: examining the mediating role of job satisfaction. Available: DOI: 10.17626/dBEM.ICoM.P00.2015.p062.

Whiteside D.B. 2015. Promoting fairness in the workplace: Identifying and overcoming the barri-ers to managerial fairness in organizations. Waterloo: Wilfrid Laurier University.

Wilson, J. 2010. Essentials of business research: A guide to doing your research project. London: Sage.