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Zetterberg, C., Heiden, M., Lindberg, P., Nylén, P. & Hemphälä, H. (2019). Reliability of a new risk assessment method for visual ergonomics. International Journal of Industrial Ergonomics, 72, 71-79
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Reliability of a new risk assessment method for visual ergonomics
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2019 (English)In: International Journal of Industrial Ergonomics, ISSN 0169-8141, E-ISSN 1872-8219, Vol. 72, p. 71-79Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

Introduction

The Visual Ergonomics Risk Assessment Method (VERAM) is a newly developed and validated method to assess visual ergonomics at workplaces. VERAM consists of a questionnaire and an objective evaluation.

Objective

To evaluate reliability of VERAM by assessing test-retest reliability of the questionnaire, and intra- and inter-rater reliability of the objective evaluation.

Methods

Forty-eight trained evaluators used VERAM to evaluate visual ergonomics at 174 workstations. The time interval for test-retest and intra-rater evaluations was 2–3 weeks, and the time interval for inter-rater evaluations was 0–2 days. Test-retest reliability was assessed by intraclass correlation (ICC), the standard error of measurement (SEM) and the smallest detectable change (SDC). Intra- and inter-rater reliability were assessed with weighted kappa coefficients and absolute agreement. Systematic changes were analysed with repeated measures analyses of variance and Wilcoxon sign rank test.

Results

The ICC of the questionnaire indices ranged from 0.69 to 0.87, while SEM ranged from 7.21 to 10.19 on a scale from 1 to 100, and SDC from 14.42 to 20.37. Intra-rater reliability of objective evaluations ranged from 0.57 to 0.85 (kappa coefficients) and the agreement from 69 to 91%. Inter-rater reliability of objective evaluations ranged from 0.37 to 0.72 (kappa coefficients) and the agreement from 52 to 87%.

Conclusion

VERAM is a reliable instrument for assessing risks in visual work environments. However, the reliability might increase further by improving the quality of training for evaluators. Complementary evaluations of VERAM's sensitivity to changes in the visual environment are needed.

Relevance to industry

It is advantageous to set up a work environment for maximal visual comfort to avoid negative effects on work postures and movements and thus prevent visual- and musculoskeletal symptoms. This method, VERAM, satisfies the need of a valid and reliable tool for determining risks associated with the visual work environment.

Keywords
eyestrain, musculoskeletal, lighting, illuminance, glare, flicker
National Category
Occupational Health and Environmental Health
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:hig:diva-28745 (URN)10.1016/j.ergon.2019.04.002 (DOI)2-s2.0-85064888978 (Scopus ID)
Funder
AFA Insurance, 130166
Available from: 2018-12-03 Created: 2018-12-03 Last updated: 2019-08-08Bibliographically approved
Heiden, M., Zetterberg, C., Lindberg, P., Nylén, P. & Hemphälä, H. (2019). Validity of a computer-based risk assessment method for visual ergonomics. International Journal of Industrial Ergonomics, 72, 180-187
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Validity of a computer-based risk assessment method for visual ergonomics
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2019 (English)In: International Journal of Industrial Ergonomics, ISSN 0169-8141, E-ISSN 1872-8219, Vol. 72, p. 180-187Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

Objective

To describe the development of a computer-based risk assessment method for visual ergonomics, and assess its face validity, content validity, and internal consistency.

Methods

The risk assessment method contained a questionnaire for the worker, an evaluation form for the evaluator, a section of follow-up questions based on the worker's responses, and a section for recommended changes, including an overall risk assessment with respect to daylight, lighting, illuminance, glare, flicker, work space, work object and work postures, respectively. Forty-eight trained evaluators used the method to perform 224 workplace evaluations. Content validity of the method was assessed by the completeness and distribution of responses, and internal consistency was assessed by Cronbach's alpha, Spearman's rank correlation between items and indices, and exploratory factor analysis.

Results

The proportion of missing values in items was generally low (questionnaire: 0–2.3%; evaluation form: 1.4–4.1%). In the questionnaire, items about double vision, migraine and corrective lenses had limited information content. Cronbach's alpha and item-index correlations for the indices frequency of eyestrain, intensity of eyestrain, visual symptoms, lighting conditions, frequency of musculoskeletal discomfort and intensity of musculoskeletal discomfort were satisfactory. Based on the factor analysis, suggestions for improving some of the indices were made.

Conclusion

Our findings suggest that this computer-based method is a valid instrument for assessing risks in the visual work environment. By incorporating subjective ratings by the worker as well as objective measurements of the work environment, it provides a good basis for recommendations with respect to daylight, lighting, work surfaces/material, and work object.

Relevance to industry

Visual environment factors, such as glare, can cause eyestrain, headache and musculoskeletal discomfort. This method satisfies the need of a valid tool for determining risks associated with the visual work environment. It contains both worker's ratings and objective measurements, and is designed to be used in different types of work.

Keywords
eyestrain, musculoskeletal, lighting, illuminance, glare, flicker
National Category
Occupational Health and Environmental Health
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:hig:diva-28726 (URN)10.1016/j.ergon.2019.05.006 (DOI)2-s2.0-85065916273 (Scopus ID)
Funder
AFA Insurance, 130166
Available from: 2018-11-30 Created: 2018-11-30 Last updated: 2019-08-20Bibliographically approved
Lindberg, P. (Ed.). (2018). FALF KONFERENS 2018 Arbetet – problem eller potential för en hållbar livsmiljö?   10-12 juni 2018 Gävle: Program och abstracts. Paper presented at FALF KONFERENS 2018 Arbetet – problem eller potential för en hållbar livsmiljö?, 10-12 juni 2018, Gävle. Gävle: Gävle University Press
Open this publication in new window or tab >>FALF KONFERENS 2018 Arbetet – problem eller potential för en hållbar livsmiljö?   10-12 juni 2018 Gävle: Program och abstracts
2018 (Swedish)Conference proceedings (editor) (Refereed)
Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Gävle: Gävle University Press, 2018. p. 150
National Category
Occupational Health and Environmental Health
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:hig:diva-26582 (URN)978-91-88145-28-4 (ISBN)
Conference
FALF KONFERENS 2018 Arbetet – problem eller potential för en hållbar livsmiljö?, 10-12 juni 2018, Gävle
Available from: 2018-06-18 Created: 2018-06-18 Last updated: 2018-07-03Bibliographically approved
Lennernäs Wiklund, M., Gard, G., Lindberg, P., Olofsson, N., Risberg, A. & Willmer, M. (2018). Hann du äta?: En enkät och intervjustudie av arbetsmåltidens förutsättningar och betydelse för hälsa och välbefinnande vid skift- och schemalagt arbete med nattarbete. In: Per Lindberg (Ed.), FALF KONFERENS 2018 Arbetet – problem eller potential för en hållbar livsmiljö?   10-12 juni 2018 Gävle: Program och abstracts. Paper presented at FALF KONFERENS 2018 Arbetet – problem eller potential för en hållbar livsmiljö?, 10-12 juni 2018, Gävle (pp. 129). Gävle: Gävle University Press
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Hann du äta?: En enkät och intervjustudie av arbetsmåltidens förutsättningar och betydelse för hälsa och välbefinnande vid skift- och schemalagt arbete med nattarbete
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2018 (Swedish)In: FALF KONFERENS 2018 Arbetet – problem eller potential för en hållbar livsmiljö?   10-12 juni 2018 Gävle: Program och abstracts / [ed] Per Lindberg, Gävle: Gävle University Press , 2018, p. 129-Conference paper, Oral presentation with published abstract (Refereed)
Abstract [sv]

Bakgrund

Ohälsosamma matvanor och stress bidrar till sjukskrivningar och nedsatt arbetsförmåga genom övervikt, hjärtkärlsjukdom, diabetes typ 2 och psykisk ohälsa. Slimmade organisationer och flexibla arbetstider begränsar möjligheten att äta hälsosamt i samband med arbete. Särskilt utsatt är personal med skift- och schemalagt arbete. Att inte kunna på-verka när man äter under arbetspasset kan öka stress och irritation, med risk för sänkt prestations- och koncentrationsförmåga. Arbetsmiljöverkets föreskrifter om organisatorisk och social arbetsmiljö (AFS 2015:4) syftar till att främja en god arbetsmiljö och förebygga ohälsa på grund av organisatoriska och sociala förhållanden i arbetsmiljön. Det finns ingen lagstiftning angående matrastens längd eller utformningen av matrum. Arbetsgivaren har rätt att byta ut raster mot måltidsuppehåll, det senare innebär måltid om arbetssituationen medger det. Personal med ständig larmberedskap kan arbeta en hel natt utan möjlighet att äta. Detta är tveksamt med hänsyn till hälsa, säkerhet och arbetsförmåga.

Syfte

Studiens syfte är 1) att få en bättre förståelse av de faktorer som påverkar möjligheten och formerna för att äta i samband med natt- och skiftarbete och de val anställda gör utifrån de förutsättningar som finns 2) att öka förståelsen av hur arbetsmåltiden påverkas av organisatoriska och psykosociala förhållanden, och måltidens betydelse för återhämtning, välbefinnande och hälsa.

Frågeställningar

Hur gestaltas arbetsmåltider för personal med skift- och schemalagt arbete? Vilka strat-egier och handlingsutrymmen har personalen för att planera sina arbetsmåltider? Vi kommer särskilt att uppmärksamma vad personalen äter, under vilka omständigheter de äter samt vilken betydelse måltiden har för välbefinnande och gemenskap.

Urval och metod

Enkät riktas till anställda med dag-, skift- och schemalagt arbete inom industri och hemtjänst. Intervjuer genomförs med chefer inom dessa verksamheter.

Resultat

Studien startar våren 2018 med inledande intervjuer och test av enkät till målgrupper efter arbetsplatsbesök. Under konferensen kommer vi att kortfattat sammanfatta den forskning som finns inom ramen för våra frågeställningar samt att redovisa resultat från några intervjuer med chefer.

Genom vårt deltagande vill vi bidra till att sätta arbetsmåltiden på agendan inom arbetsmiljöforskning och diskutera med andra forskare hur de ser på arbetsmåltiden ur ett arbetsmiljöperspektiv.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Gävle: Gävle University Press, 2018
National Category
Other Social Sciences
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:hig:diva-28859 (URN)978-91-88145-28-4 (ISBN)
Conference
FALF KONFERENS 2018 Arbetet – problem eller potential för en hållbar livsmiljö?, 10-12 juni 2018, Gävle
Note

Rundabordssamtal

Available from: 2018-12-17 Created: 2018-12-17 Last updated: 2018-12-17Bibliographically approved
Zetterberg, C., Heiden, M., Lindberg, P., Nylén, P. & Hemphälä, H. (2018). Intra-rater reliability of the Visual Ergonomics Risk Assessment Method (VERAM). In: : . Paper presented at IEA 2018 - The 20th Triennial Congress of the International Ergonomics Association, 26-30 August 2018, Florence, Italy.
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Intra-rater reliability of the Visual Ergonomics Risk Assessment Method (VERAM)
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2018 (English)Conference paper, Oral presentation with published abstract (Refereed)
Abstract [en]

Introduction: Visually demanding near work can cause eye discomfort, and eye and neck/shoulder discomfort during, e.g., computer work are associated. Apart from visual demands and dryness a number of environmental factors including design of the work station, lighting, glare, and the quality of the computer screen might exert an impact on eye-related symptoms. To date, there is a lack of valid and reliable instruments assessing factors associated with eye- or visual symptoms. Therefore, a new method to assess visual ergonomics at workplaces was developed in Sweden between 2014 and 2016, the Visual Ergonomics Risk Assessment Method - VERAM. A first version of the method was drafted by the researchers mainly from existing checklists and instruments, and tested in the field by trained visual ergonomists. The method was then revised and used in the field to collect data for validity and reliability analyses. The final version of VERAM includes both a questionnaire for the employee, and an expert evaluation of the employee’s workplace. The questionnaire consists of subjective ratings in six domains: eye discomfort (frequency and intensity), musculoskeletal discomfort (frequency and intensity), ratings of visual symptoms (e.g. blurred and double vision) and ratings of the visual environment (e.g. illumination levels, glare and reflexes from a work object or a computer screen). The expert evaluation consists of both objective measurements and subjective assessments resulting in an overall expert risk assessment (no risk, low risk or high risk) of eight factors: daylight, lighting, illuminance, glare, flicker, work space, work object and work posture.

Aim: At the IEA conference 2018 the new VERAM method will be presented together with results from intra-rater reliability analyses.

Results: Intra-rater reliability was evaluated with a re-test interval of minimum two and maximum three weeks. 99 employees were included in the analyses and 32 visual ergonomists performed the corresponding expert evaluations. The Intraclass Correlations (ICC) were between 0.70 and 0.87 for the six subjective domains, and there were no significant systematic differences between the first and second rating for any of the subjective domains (rmANOVA, p > 0.05, α = 0.008). For the eight environmental factors the expert estimated the risk equally during the first and the second assessment in 69-92% of the cases, and, as seen for the subjective domains, there were no significant systematic differences for any of the eight factors (Wilcoxon sign rank test, p > 0.014, α = 0.006). To control for multiple comparisons the Bonferroni method was used.

Conclusion: The Visual Ergonomics Risk Assessment Method – VERAM showed good intra-rater reliability, both for the subjective questionnaire for the employee, and for the expert evaluation of the employee’s workplace when performed by a trained visual ergonomist.

National Category
Occupational Health and Environmental Health
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:hig:diva-28758 (URN)
Conference
IEA 2018 - The 20th Triennial Congress of the International Ergonomics Association, 26-30 August 2018, Florence, Italy
Funder
AFA Insurance, 130166
Available from: 2018-12-04 Created: 2018-12-04 Last updated: 2018-12-06Bibliographically approved
Hämphälä, H., Zetterberg, C., Lindberg, P., Heiden, M. & Nylén, P. (2017). A risk assessment method for visual ergonomics, VERAM. In: : . Paper presented at Arbetslivskonferens 2017, 'Arbetslivets utmaningar i staden och på landsbygden', FALF, 13-15 juni 2017, Alnarp.
Open this publication in new window or tab >>A risk assessment method for visual ergonomics, VERAM
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2017 (English)Conference paper, Oral presentation only (Refereed)
Abstract [en]

A valid, reliable, practical and easy-to-use risk assessment method for visual ergonomics named VERAM (Visual Ergonomics Risk Analysis Method) has been developed. With this method, risk factors in the visual environment can be detected, and interventions implemented to reduce the prevalence of symptoms related to poor visual ergonomics among workers can be evaluated.

The visual environment can affect our wellbeing in many ways. Glare from luminaires or windows within the visual field can cause disability glare or discomfort glare. Glare while performing computer tasks causes visual fatigue and leads to strabismus measured with fixation disparity (harder for the eyes to focus). Strabismus leads to eyestrain, and eyestrain can lead to musculoskeletal discomfort.  Non-visual effects, such as flicker from luminaires can cause eyestrain or headache/migraine. Insufficient visual ability can lead to increased workload and contribute to eyestrain and musculoskeletal discomfort that in turn could lead to sick leave. As human beings, we need daylight to get a normal circadian rhythm. The visual environment needs to be designed to allow daylight entering, but have a possibility to prevent disturbing daylight.

No method for evaluating the visual environment together with the individual’s subjective strain has previously existed. Personnel from occupational health departments (75 individuals) have used the developed visual ergonomics risk analysis method at several work places. Before using the method they were given a course in visual ergonomics and taught how to use the method.

VERAM consists of two main parts. The first part is a subjective questionnaire with questions regarding the individual’s problem such as eyestrain and headache, but also their rating of the visual environment.

The second objective part is performed by the assessors and consists of:

  • measuring the illuminance and luminance
  • rating of the visual environment and different risks (risk for glare, flicker, work task, daylight, work posture etc.)
  • Feedback from the subjective part, the light measurements and the ratings
  • Recommendations

To increase wellbeing at work and reduce sick leave, the visual environment needs to be good. This includes sufficient illuminance, a good luminance ratio, no glare from luminaires or windows, no flicker, and a good visibility of the work task. Education in risk analysis of the visual environment is essential for many different occupations such as lighting designers, ergonomists, working life inspectors, optometrists, to ensure a better understanding of the impact on wellbeing that the visual environment have. The main purposes of this study is to develop a visual environment risk analysis method and to increase the awareness and knowledge visual ergonomics.

National Category
Occupational Health and Environmental Health
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:hig:diva-24782 (URN)
Conference
Arbetslivskonferens 2017, 'Arbetslivets utmaningar i staden och på landsbygden', FALF, 13-15 juni 2017, Alnarp
Funder
AFA Insurance
Available from: 2017-08-02 Created: 2017-08-02 Last updated: 2018-03-13Bibliographically approved
Lindberg, P., Karlsson, T., Strömberg, A., Gustafsson, S. & Anderzén, I. (2017). Can a systematic participative method for procesing workplace survey data enhance organizational communication skills?. In: : . Paper presented at 12th International Conference on Occupational Stress and Health, "Work, Stress and Health 2017: Contemporary Challenges and Opportunities,", 7-10 June, 2017, Minneapolis, USA.
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Can a systematic participative method for procesing workplace survey data enhance organizational communication skills?
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2017 (English)Conference paper, Poster (with or without abstract) (Refereed)
Abstract [en]

Objectives

The concept healthy workplace has been defined as an organization that maximizes the integration of worker goals for wellbeing and company objectives for profitability and productivity (Sauter, Lim, & Murphy, 1996). The PATH-model (Grawitch, Gottschalk, & Munz, 2006) shows a synthesis of earlier research in a number of different disciplines and frames how a healthy workplace with wellbeing for the individual along with organizational improvements can be achieved. The model suggests five general categories of healthy workplace practices: work-life balance, employee growth and development, health and safety, recognition, and employee involvement. In order for these workplace practices to have an influence on the employees and the organizational outcomes the effectiveness of communication within the organization is crucial as is the alignment of workplace practices with the organizational context. Effective organizational communication in this context means that the management communicates what the organization offers the employees in order to enable good performance and wellbeing at work as well as that the employees state their needs in order to do a good job. The ongoing GodA-project (a Swedish acronym for good work environments and healthy workplaces) aims at investigating if workplace strategies in line with the PATH-model add to better health and wellbeing among the employees as well as organizational improvements. The present study is part of the GodA-project and aims at exploring to which extent the specific “GodA-method” for processing workplace survey data influences organizational communication skills. 

Methods

The GodA study is a 2-year follow up study with a survey feedback design in three companies with both blue- and white collar workers. One of the companies serves as “intervention-company”, the other two as controls. The project started in 2012 with a pre-project by means of focus groups and individual interviews in order to find out how employees and managers in the three companies describe the concept of a healthy work environment and what contributes to their well-being at work. In 2013 a baseline questionnaire was sent out including items, a) based on the combined results of the pre-study and a comprehensive literature review (Lindberg & Vingård, 2012) , and b) well-established questions on health and work environment. The results from the survey were reported back to the companies, which have been processing their respective results. In spring 2015 another survey wave was administered. Parallel, data concerning the company’s key indicators and internal development have been collected.

 Baseline results in the GodA-study showed that the employees considered communication as a very important factor for their well-being at work. However, they also reported that the internal communication was not at all at desired level. Considering that the PATH-model emphasizes internal communication as critical in establishing a healthy workplace, the intervention was designed to enhance communication skills. The “GodA-method”, to process the survey feedback was developed in collaboration with the “intervention-company”. In short, the baseline results concerning health, and physical- and psychosocial factors at the workplace, as reported by respective working group, are split into nine themes. Each theme is designed small enough to be processed during the groups’ monthly staff meetings. At the meetings the employees discuss today’s theme, first without then together with their supervisor and decide upon one measurable action to be taken to improve their work environment. To begin each discussion without the supervisor was a chosen strategy in order to empower the employees and in an implicit way train communication skills. The intervention has been followed by process evaluation forms for the supervisors as well as group interviews with employees and supervisors, respectively.   

Results

Nine working groups, each with 7-13 employees, were studied. The individual groups performed heterogeneous. The degree to which the various groups actively took actions for improvements seemed to be associated with the closest supervisor’s understanding of the importance of respective themes and his/her capability to conduct group discussions.

Communication was measured by a 5-item index showing the discrepancy between experienced and desirable communication level, where an index score of -0,5 to 0 (no discrepancy) was considered as good and a score below -.5 was considered undesirable. Preliminary results show that in groups (=5) performing 3-5 meetings the communication index in average deteriorated from -0.89 to -1.41, whereas groups (=4) performing 8-9 meetings the index improved or remained at a rather high level, in average from -0.92 to -0.71. Further analyses and results will be presented at the conference.

Conclusion

The results give support to the hypothesis that systematic and continuous training focusing on a mutual theme is a feasible method for improving communication skills.

Practical implications

Healthy workplaces are not created overnight. The GodA-method for processing employee surveys seems to be a useful way to systematically work with continuous improvements of the workplace. However, training of supervisors for group discussions seems necessary.

National Category
Occupational Health and Environmental Health
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:hig:diva-24780 (URN)
Conference
12th International Conference on Occupational Stress and Health, "Work, Stress and Health 2017: Contemporary Challenges and Opportunities,", 7-10 June, 2017, Minneapolis, USA
Funder
AFA Insurance
Note

Acknowledgements

This study was made possible by grants from AFA insurance and University of Gävle.

Available from: 2017-08-02 Created: 2017-08-02 Last updated: 2018-03-13Bibliographically approved
Lindberg, P., Karlsson, T., Nordlöf, H., Engström, V. & Vingård, E. (2017). Factors at work promoting mental health and wellbeing - a systematic litterature review. In: : . Paper presented at 12th International Conference on Occupational Stress and Health, "Work, Stress and Health 2017: Contemporary Challenges and Opportunities," 7-10 June, 2017, Minneapolis, USA.
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Factors at work promoting mental health and wellbeing - a systematic litterature review
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2017 (English)Conference paper, Oral presentation only (Refereed)
Abstract [en]

Introduction

There is strong evidence that work itself, despite its risks, reduces the risk of depression and improves mental health (Waddell & Burton, 2006; van der Noordt, IJzelenberg, Droomers, & Proper, 2014). Mental health, like mental illness, is a vaguely defined concept. Mental health is a non-contextual concept which can be defined as absence of mental illness and with the opportunity to develop and flourish with high levels of emotional, psychological and social well-being (Keyes, 2005). The concept of wellbeing at work is inclusive. It relates to the physical environment, work-related risks, organization of work and tasks, relationships with colleagues, personal health and work ability and even family-related stress (Suomaa Leo, Yrjänheikki Erkki, Savolainen Heikki, & Hannu, 2011). It can also be seen as an important determinant of productivity at the individual, corporate and community levels (Schulte & Vainio, 2010).

"Healthy factors" for mental health in the workplace are factors and circumstances at work that may have a preventive and/or promotional effect on mental health and wellbeing of the workers. These factors can serve as resources (buffers) against negative consequences of various risks at work, but they may also be factors that, by themselves, create positive health benefits for the individual and the workplace.

The large numbers of work-related mental unhealthy in the western world (not the least in Sweden), call for actions in improving working conditions, but which are the important determinants of positive mental health and wellbeing at work to be influenced?  A review of indicators for healthy workplaces has recently been performed (Lindberg & Vingård, 2012), but we have not found any comprehensive review explicitly concerning positive mental health at work. Hence, the aim of this study was to review current knowledge concerning determinants for mental health and wellbeing at work.

Method

Two comprehensive literature searches were conducted in nine scientific databases, EBSCO (includes Academic Search Elite, Cinahl, PsycINFO och PsycARTICLES), Emerald, PubMed, Scopus and Web of Science, for relevant articles written in English, German or the Scandinavian languages. The first search, covering 2000-2014, was done for a Swedish government report (Lindberg & Karlsson, 2015). The second search, covering 2014 - June 2016, updated the previous data for the purpose of a scientific publication. Exclusion of articles was made stepwise by title, abstract and full text. The quality of included articles was assessed by acknowledged guidelines (STROBE Statement) and done separately by two researchers. The combined results are being analysed and will be presented in Montreal.

Search terms were: work OR workplace OR "healthy workplace" OR "healthy work" OR "healthy work* environment" OR "good work* environment" AND "depressive disorder" OR depression OR "behavioral symptoms" OR "anxiety disorders" OR "stress, psychological" OR "common mental disorders" OR "mental health" OR "sustainable mental health” OR "mental wellbeing" OR "mental well-being" OR "job wellbeing" OR "job well-being" OR "positive mental health" OR "good mental health" OR "positive mental wellbeing" OR "positive mental well-being" AND prevention OR promotion.

Results

According to preliminary analyses 5378 unique publications were found, of these 30 review-, cohort-, cross sectional-, and qualitative studies are included.

In the included studies 25 individual or categories of related factors promoting positive mental health and wellbeing at work were identified. Below is a list of the twelve most frequently researched factors listed in order of descending frequency.

  • Style of  leadership
  • Empowerment; Autonomy; Control at work; Participation
  • Possibilities for own development
  • Positive work climate
  • Social  support from supervisor
  • Communication supervisor-employee
  • Clear goals
  • Appreciation from supervisors, colleagues, customers
  • Work time control; Enough time
  • Effort-reward balance
  • Intellectually stimulating
  • Job security

 As seen above the most frequently investigated factor was the impact of leadership on mental health. It was found that “good leadership”, i.e. fair, supportive and empowering, gave positive health changes and increased well-being, that increased quality of a staff-oriented leadership reduced sickness absence in the company and that transformational leadership increased psychological wellbeing and job satisfaction among workers.

Conclusion

Independent of study design leadership was the most scrutinized factor. Apart from possibly being a research trend (?), this may be interpreted as an understanding of both its explicit influence on the well-being of the employees, and its implicit influence by having the authority to facilitate communication, empowerment, control, support, respect, work content, feedback, etc.

Practical implications

Working conditions arise in the interaction between the individual and the organization, but creating working conditions that promote mental health cannot be put on the individual. It must be organized in the workplace for the employees in that special context, whereby the leadership seems to be paramount for the promotion of mental health and wellbeing at work.

National Category
Applied Psychology Occupational Health and Environmental Health
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:hig:diva-24779 (URN)
Conference
12th International Conference on Occupational Stress and Health, "Work, Stress and Health 2017: Contemporary Challenges and Opportunities," 7-10 June, 2017, Minneapolis, USA
Projects
ArbPsykForterapport 2015: "Psykisk ohälsa, arbetsliv och sjukfrånvaro - en kunskapsöversikt
Funder
Forte, Swedish Research Council for Health, Working Life and Welfare
Note

Acknowledgements

This study was commissioned by the Swedish government and funded by the Swedish Research Council for Health, Working Life and Welfare, and the University of Gävle.

Available from: 2017-08-02 Created: 2017-08-02 Last updated: 2018-03-13Bibliographically approved
Lindberg, P., Karlsson, T., Nordlöf, H., Engström, V. & Vingård, E. (2017). Factors at work promoting mental health and wellbeing at work – a systematic literature review. In: : . Paper presented at 5th World Congress International Positive Psychology Association, 13-16 July 2017, Montreal, Quebec, Canada.
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Factors at work promoting mental health and wellbeing at work – a systematic literature review
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2017 (English)Conference paper, Oral presentation only (Refereed)
Abstract [en]

Introduction

There is strong evidence that work itself, despite its risks, reduces the risk of depression and improves mental health (Waddell & Burton, 2006; van der Noordt, IJzelenberg, Droomers, & Proper, 2014). Mental health, like mental illness, is a vaguely defined concept. Mental health is a non-contextual concept, which can be defined as absence of mental illness and with the opportunity to develop and flourish with high levels of emotional, psychological and social well-being (Keyes, 2005). The concept of wellbeing at work is inclusive. It relates to the physical environment, work-related risks, organization of work and tasks, relationships with colleagues, personal health and work ability and even family-related stress (Suomaa, Yrjänheikki, Savolainen, & Jokiluoma, 2011). It can also be seen as an important determinant of productivity at the individual, corporate and community levels (Schulte & Vainio, 2010).

"Healthy factors" for mental health in the workplace are factors and circumstances at work that may have a preventive and/or promotional effect on mental health and wellbeing of the workers. These factors can serve as resources (buffers) against negative consequences of various risks at work. They may also be factors that, by themselves, create positive health benefits for the individual and the workplace.

The large numbers of work-related mental unhealthy in the western world (not the least in Sweden), call for actions in improving working conditions, but which are the important determinants of positive mental health and wellbeing at work to be influenced?  A review of indicators for healthy workplaces has recently been performed (Lindberg & Vingård, 2012), but we have not found any comprehensive review explicitly concerning mental health at work. Hence, the aim of this study was to review current knowledge concerning determinants for mental health and wellbeing at work.

Method

Two comprehensive literature searches were conducted in nine scientific databases, EBSCO (includes Academic Search Elite, Cinahl, PsycINFO och PsycARTICLES), Emerald, PubMed, Scopus and Web of Science, for relevant articles written in English, German or the Scandinavian languages. The first search, covering 2000-2014, was done for a Swedish government report. The second search, covering 2014- June 2016, updated the previous data for the purpose of a scientific publication. Exclusion of articles was made stepwise by title, abstract and full text. The quality of included articles was assessed by acknowledged guidelines (STROBE Statement) and done separately by two researchers. The combined results are being analysed and will be presented in Montreal.

Search terms were: work OR workplace OR "healthy workplace" OR "healthy work" OR "healthy work* environment" OR "good work* environment" AND "depressive disorder" OR depression OR "behavioral symptoms" OR "anxiety disorders" OR "stress, psychological" OR "common mental disorders" OR "mental health" OR "sustainable mental health” OR "mental wellbeing" OR "mental well-being" OR "job wellbeing" OR "job well-being" OR "positive mental health" OR "good mental health" OR "positive mental wellbeing" OR "positive mental well-being" AND prevention OR promotion.

Results

5378 unique publications were found, of these 30 review-, cohort-, cross sectional-, and qualitative studies are included (preliminary data).

We found 25 individual or “group of related factors” promoting positive mental health and wellbeing at work. Below is a list of the twelve most frequently investigated factors arranged in order of descending frequency.

  • Style of leadership
  • Empowerment; Autonomy; Control at work;      Participation
  • Possibilities for own development
  • Positive work climate
  • Social support from supervisor
  • Communication supervisor-employee
  • Clear goals
  • Appreciation from supervisors, colleagues,      customers
  • Work time control; Enough time
  • Effort-reward balance
  • Intellectually stimulating
  • Job security

As seen above the most frequently investigated factor was the impact of leadership on mental health. It was found that “good leadership”, i.e. fair, supportive and empowering, gave positive health changes and increased well-being, that increased quality of a staff-oriented leadership reduced sickness absence in the company and that transformational leadership increased psychological wellbeing and job satisfaction among workers.

Conclusion

Independent of study design leadership was the most investigated factor. Apart from possibly being a research trend, this can be interpreted as an insight into both its explicit influence on the well-being of the employees, and its implicit influence by having the authority to facilitate communication, empowerment, control, support, respect, work content, feedback, etc.

Working conditions arise in the interaction between the individual and the organization, but creating working conditions that promote mental health cannot be put on the individual. It must be organized in the workplace for the employees in that special context, whereby the leadership seems to be paramount for the promotion of mental health and wellbeing at work.

Keywords
Work, mental health, wellbeing, review, leadership
National Category
Occupational Health and Environmental Health Psychology (excluding Applied Psychology)
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:hig:diva-24781 (URN)
Conference
5th World Congress International Positive Psychology Association, 13-16 July 2017, Montreal, Quebec, Canada
Projects
ArbPsykForterapport 2015: Psykisk ohälsa, arbetsliv och sjuknärvaro - en kunskapsöversikt
Funder
Forte, Swedish Research Council for Health, Working Life and Welfare
Note

Acknowledgements

This study was commissioned by the Swedish government and funded by the Swedish Research Council for Health, Working Life and Welfare, and the University of Gävle.

Available from: 2017-08-02 Created: 2017-08-02 Last updated: 2018-03-13Bibliographically approved
Hemphälä, H., Zetterberg, C., Lindberg, P., Heiden, M. & Nylén, P. (2016). A risk assessment method for visual ergonomics. In: Susanna Järvelin-Pasanen (Ed.), NES2016 - ERGONOMICS IN THEORY AND PRACTICE - Proceedings of 48th Annual Conference of Nordic Ergonomics and Human Factors Society: . Paper presented at NES 2016 - Ergonomics in theory and practice , 48th Annual Conference of Nordic Ergonomics and Human Factors Society, Kuopio. Kuopio: School of Medicine , Faculty of Health Sciences : University of Eastern Finland
Open this publication in new window or tab >>A risk assessment method for visual ergonomics
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2016 (English)In: NES2016 - ERGONOMICS IN THEORY AND PRACTICE - Proceedings of 48th Annual Conference of Nordic Ergonomics and Human Factors Society / [ed] Susanna Järvelin-Pasanen, Kuopio: School of Medicine , Faculty of Health Sciences : University of Eastern Finland , 2016Conference paper, Oral presentation only (Refereed)
Abstract [en]

The visual environment can affect our wellbeing in many ways. Insufficient visual ability can lead to increased workload and contribute to eyestrain and musculoskeletal discomfort that in turn could lead to sick leave. Non-visual effects, such as flicker from luminaires can cause eyestrain or headache/migraine. Glare from luminaires or windows within the visual field can cause disability glare or discomfort glare. Glare while performing computer tasks causes visual fatigue and leads to strabismus measured with fixation disparity (harder for the eyes to focus). Strabismus leads to eyestrain, and eyestrain can lead to musculoskeletal discomfort.Although the relation between eyestrain and musculoskeletal discomfort is not fully understood, studies have shown that straining the eyes increases the musculoskeletal activity in the neck and shoulders (muscle trapezius); associations between visually demanding work, eye problems, headaches and/or muscle problems have also been found.The aim of this project is to develop a practical, easy-to-use, and time efficient risk assessment method for visual ergonomics. With this method, risk factors in the visualenvironment can be detected, and interventions implemented to reduce the prevalence of symptoms related to poor visual ergonomics among workers.The developed visual ergonomics risk analysis method has been used at several work places by ergonomists that have been educated in visual ergonomics. The results from the subjective part of the method show that many individuals report eyestrain and headache. This can be caused by many different factors such as wrong power in lenses, glare, flickering lights etc. Therefore it is essential that if you have a visually demanding work (such as computer work) you have to do eye examinations every other year to make sure that your vision is at its best. But the lighting situation at workplaces is also a key factor to consider in a good visual environment, to increase the level of performance. To increase wellbeing at work and reduce sick leave the visual environment needs to be good, with sufficient illuminance, a good luminance ratio, no glare from luminaires or windows,no flicker, and a good visibility of the work task. Education in risk analysis of the visual environment is essential for many different occupations such as lighting designers, ergonomists, working life inspectors, optometrists, to ensure a better understanding of the impact on wellbeing that the visual environment have.The researchers behind this study will have a finished visual ergonomics risk analysis method by the year of 2017.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Kuopio: School of Medicine , Faculty of Health Sciences : University of Eastern Finland, 2016
Series
Publications of the University of Eastern Finland : Reports and Studies in Health Sciences, ISSN 1798- 5730 ; 22
National Category
Occupational Health and Environmental Health
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:hig:diva-23059 (URN)978-952-61-2192-5 (ISBN)
Conference
NES 2016 - Ergonomics in theory and practice , 48th Annual Conference of Nordic Ergonomics and Human Factors Society, Kuopio
Available from: 2016-12-15 Created: 2016-12-15 Last updated: 2018-03-13Bibliographically approved
Organisations
Identifiers
ORCID iD: ORCID iD iconorcid.org/0000-0002-2091-6396

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