University of Oulu

Päivi Kekkonen; Arto Reiman (2019) "Schools and kindergartens as shared workplaces: An analysis of the work ability management challenges of the meal and cleaning service employees", Work - A Journal of Prevention Assessment & Rehabilitation, 64(1) 161–173. DOI:10.3233/WOR-192966

Schools and kindergartens as shared workplaces : an analysis of the work ability management challenges of the meal and cleaning service employees

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Author: Kekkonen, Päivi1; Reiman, Arto1
Organizations: 1Industrial Engineering and Management, University of Oulu, Finland
Format: article
Version: accepted version
Access: open
Online Access: PDF Full Text (PDF, 0.6 MB)
Persistent link:
Language: English
Published: IOS Press, 2019
Publish Date: 2019-11-12


Background: Service organizations and their employees encounter challenges today due to an increase in the average age of employees, a decrease in recruitment, and changes in work tasks, sites, and communities. These factors give rise to physical and psychosocial burdens that can lower the work ability and productivity of the employees.

Objective: The goal of this study is to find practical solutions for challenges related to the work environment and practices at a public in-house enterprise providing meal and cleaning services. Also, the design of a model for the management of these load factors at municipal workplaces, where stakeholders from different subdivisions work together, is intended.

Methods: The materials comprised of documents provided by the case organization, interviews, and work observations. Root cause analysis and participatory development sessions were carried out to find causes for the observed challenges and to discover practical solutions.

Results: A number of microergonomic solutions were found. Also, broader subjects for development, common to several target workplaces, were discovered.

Conclusions: The concept of a shared workplace, proved useful in exploring ways to manage work ability and productivity. A generalizable macroergonomics model for the management of load factors at shared workplaces in the public sector was proposed.

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Series: Work. A journal of prevention, assessment & rehabilitation
ISSN: 1051-9815
ISSN-E: 1051-9815
ISSN-L: 1051-9815
Volume: 64
Issue: 1
Pages: 161 - 173
DOI: 10.3233/WOR-192966
Type of Publication: A1 Journal article – refereed
Field of Science: 222 Other engineering and technologies
Copyright information: © 2019 – IOS Press and the authors. All rights reserved.