h2. Spotlight on article published in

h2. "+Journal of Epidemiology and Community Health+":http://jech.bmj.com/content/61/12/1028.abstract

_IBI Spotlights call attention to important health and productivity findings from peer-reviewed work by external researchers. Unless otherwise stated, the authors are not affiliated with IBI, nor was the research executed on IBI’s behalf. IBI members are encouraged to obtain the original articles from the copyright holder._

h2. What is the Issue?

Restructuring work tasks to include more variety, promote team work, and make groups more autonomous may improve the psychosocial work environment, and in turn improve health and reduce absenteeism. Findings of these relationships are mixed.

h2. What are the findings/solutions?

* Studies that examined absenteeism as a health outcome tend to find that efforts restructure tasks had little impact on absenteeism.
* The evidence for increased teamwork was stronger than that for task variety.

h2. Journal Citation

Bambra, C., Egan, M., Thomas, S., Petticrew, M., & Whitehead, M. (2007). The Psychosocial and Health Effects of Workplace Reorganisation. 2. A Systematic Review of Task Restructuring Interventions. _Journal of Epidemiology and Community Health_, 61(12), 1028-1037.

h2. Objectives

To determine whether systematic evidence exists to support the “demand-control-support” model of workplace health. This model posits that an employee’s health is negatively impacted by high job demands, low job control, and low levels of social support in the workplace. The theory suggests structuring the tasks that an employee performs to provide them grater job control could help improve outcomes.

h2. Method

Systematic review of 19 studies that examined interventions that restructured task to provide greater job control, and which also measured a health outcome. Six of the studies measured absenteeism as a health outcome.

h2. Results

* Three studies that assessed task variety interventions and absence showed no relationship.
* Two out of three studies that assessed teamwork interventions and absenteeism showed that absences declined after teamwork interventions were instituted.

h2. Conclusion

Restructuring job tasks to increase variety of tasks, teamwork, and group autonomy does not seem likely to improve absenteeism outcomes.

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