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Which resources moderate the effects of demanding work schedules on nurses working in residential elder care? A longitudinal study
Background: Shiftwork is a major job demand for nurses and has been related to various negative consequences. Research suggests that personal and job resources moderate the impact of work schedules on stress, health and well-being.
Objectives: This longitudinal study examined whether the interactions of personal and job resources with work schedule demands predicted work engagement and emotional exhaustion in nursing.
Design: This longitudinal study included two waves of data collection with a one year follow-up using self-report questionnaires among 247 nurses working shifts or irregular working hours in residential care for the elderly in the Netherlands.
Methods: Moderated structural equation modelling was conducted to examine the interactions between personal and job resources and work schedule demands. Two work schedule demands were assessed: type of work schedule (demanding vs. less demanding) and average weekly working hours. Two personal resources, active coping and healthy lifestyle, and two job resources, work schedule control and the work schedule fit with nurses’ private life, were assessed.
Results: Results showed that the work schedule fit with nurses’ private life buffered the relationship between work schedule demands and emotional exhaustion one year later. Furthermore, the work schedule fit with nurses’ private life increased work engagement one year later when work schedule demands were high. Work schedule control strengthened the positive relationship between work schedule demands and emotional exhaustion one year later. The personal resources, active coping and healthy lifestyle were no moderators in this model.
Conclusion: Nurses suffer less from decreasing work engagement and emotional exhaustion due to work schedule demands when their work schedules fit with their private lives. Work schedule control did not buffer, but strengthened the positive relationship between weekly working hours and emotional exhaustion one year later. Job resources appeared to be more important for nurses’ well-being than personal resources. These findings highlight the importance of the fit of a work schedule with nurse's private life, if the work schedule is demanding.
Publication titleInternational Journal of Nursing Studies
PublisherPergamon-Elsevier Science Ltd
Place of publicationThe Boulevard, Langford Lane, Kidlington, Oxford, England, Ox5 1Gb
Rights statementCopyright 2016 Published by Elsevier Ltd.