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The effect of work-time influence on health and well-being: a quasi-experimental intervention study among eldercare workers

, : The effect of work-time influence on health and well-being: a quasi-experimental intervention study among eldercare workers. International Archives of Occupational and Environmental Health 84(6): 683-695

The aim of this study was to investigate the effect of work-time influence on stress and energy, work-family conflicts, lifestyle factors, and biomarkers of cardiovascular disease risk. The study was a quasi-experimental intervention study with a one-year follow-up among eldercare workers (baseline: n = 309; follow-up: n = 297). The nine work units in the intervention group designed their own intervention. We categorized these work units into three subgroups according to the interventions that they initiated: (A) self-scheduling via a computer program (n = 35), (B) setting up a task group that developed a questionnaire on work-time preference and participated in a one-day course on flexible working hours with the intention to increase employee influence on the fixed rota (n = 62), and (C) discussions of how employee work-time influence could be increased (n = 25). These subgroups were compared with a reference group consisting of ten work units (n = 187). Data consisted of questionnaires, blood samples, and measurements of waist and hip circumference. The employees in subgroup A became increasingly involved in the planning of their own work schedule. Nevertheless, we found no effect on health and well-being attributable to the intervention. The introduction of self-scheduling can successfully increase employee work-time influence. Yet, this study does not support the theory that increased work-time influence leads to better health and well-being.


PMID: 21380507

DOI: 10.1007/s00420-011-0625-8

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