Cornell University

Book Information

On the Front Line
Organization of Work in the Information Economy
Stephen J. Frenkel; Marek Korczynski; Karen A. Shire; May Tam


Paper, 1999 ISBN: 978-0-8014-8567-1
$ 32.95   £25.50

The importance of customer service is widely emphasized in business today. This book offers the first comprehensive analysis of the organization and dynamics of front-line work. The volume is based on a four-year study of over a thousand employees and eight leading companies in the United States, Australia, and Japan. On the Front Line reveals similarities and differences found in work environments-such as variance in authority relations and division of labor-as well as significant contrasts between management approaches used in Japan and those used in the United States and Australia. By examining how work differs among service, sales, and knowledge-based settings, it also shows how bureaucratic, entrepreneurial, and network forms of organization coexist in the informational economy. This seminal analysis of work in the service sector offers both a benchmark for consultants working with customer-contact organizations and valuable information for anyone concerned with the changing nature of work.

About the Author
STEPHEN J. FRENKEL is a professor in the Australian Graduate School of Management at the University of New South Wales. MAREK KORCZYNSKI is a lecturer in employment relations at Loughborough University. KAREN A. SHIRE is Associate Professor of Comparative Sociology and Japan Studies at the University of Duisburg, Germany. MAY TAM is a research fellow in the Department of Sociology at the University of Hong Kong.

Subject Areas
Sociology of Work
Business Management & Human Resources