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ORIGINAL PAPER
 
CC BY-NC 3.0 Polska
 
 

Do all types of restructuring threaten employees’ well-being? An exploratory study

 
1
Central Institute for Labour Protection – National Research Institute, Warszawa, Poland (Department of Ergonomics, Social Psychology Unit)
Int J Occup Med Environ Health 2015;28(4):689–706
KEYWORDS:
TOPICS:
ABSTRACT:
Objectives: Most research on the negative impact of restructuring on employees’ health considers restructuring involving personnel reduction. The aim of this study was to explore the assumption that the type of restructuring, business expansion versus restructuring not involving expansion (only reductions and/or change of ownership), influences its psychological responses: appraisal of the change, psychosocial working conditions and well-being after the change. Material and Methods: The study was carried out among 857 employees that experienced restructuring in 2009 and/or 2010 and 538 employees from companies not restructured at that time. The main variables, i.e., assessment of change in terms of personal benefits and losses, psychosocial job characteristics and well-being were measured using a questionnaire developed in “The psychological health and well-being in restructuring: key effects and mechanisms” project (PSYRES). Results: It was found that the employees who experienced business expansion in comparison to those who experienced exclusively change of ownership had a higher appraisal of change, while those who experienced restructuring not involving business expansion did not differ from those who experienced change of ownership. As far as psychosocial working conditions are concerned, those employees who experienced exclusively business expansion did not differ from those in the not restructured companies (except for quantitative demands that were higher), while most psychosocial working conditions of the employees who experienced restructuring not involving expansion were poorer than in the not restructured companies. Also, well-being measures of the employees who experienced exclusively business expansion did not differ from those in the not restructured companies (except for innovative behavior that was even higher), while well-being measure of those who experienced restructuring not involving expansion was poorer than of those in the not restructured companies. Conclusions: Restructuring involving exclusively business expansion is not a threat to psychosocial job characteristics (except for quantitative demands) or to employees’ well-being. Therefore, the type of restructuring should be taken into account when the restructuring – psychological health relationship is discussed.
CORRESPONDING AUTHOR:
Maria Widerszal-Bazyl   
Central Institute for Labour Protection – National Research Institute, Department of Ergonomics, Czerniakowska 16, 00-701 Warszawa, Poland
eISSN:1896-494X
ISSN:1232-1087