Working Conditions in Residential Homes for People With Disabilities in Germany, With a Particular Focus on Organizational Structures
27 Pages Posted: 4 Mar 2020
Date Written: February 7, 2020
Background: Contrary to common assumptions, previous research showed mixed results and often low levels of work stress and burnout among care workers in homes for people with disabilities. Also, the background of working conditions remains unclear, in particular, organizational structures have hardly been explored. Aims & Methods: A survey with the Copenhagen Psychosocial Questionnaire investigated job satisfaction and burnout of caregivers in German homes for disabled people, in comparison to all fields of work, with a particular focus on organizational centralization and formalization. Results show higher levels of work stress among caregivers (n=1912) compared to employees in all fields of work (n=35077). According to multivariate analyzes, causes for dissatisfaction and burnout are perceptions of emotional and quantitative demands, work-privacy-conflicts, centralization of decision-making and role ambiguity, while formalization confirms positive effects, as it fosters role clarity, predictability and perception of less quantitative demands. Leadership and sense of community also have positive impacts on working conditions. Discussion: Future studies should examine further organizational structures and processes as causes of work stress in homes for people with disabilities, especially by observations and longitudinal data. Given a broad range of moderate levels of burnout, a specification of measurement would also be desirable.
Keywords: Burnout, Job Satisfaction, Disability Homes, Organizational structures, Centralization, Formalization
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