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  • 1.
    Grell, Pär
    et al.
    Högskolan i Gävle, Akademin för hälsa och arbetsliv, Avdelningen för socialt arbete och psykologi, Socialt arbete.
    Ahmadi, Nader
    Högskolan i Gävle, Akademin för hälsa och arbetsliv, Avdelningen för socialt arbete och psykologi, Socialt arbete.
    Blom, Björn
    Umeå universitet, Institutionen för socialt arbete.
    The Balancing Act: Clients with Complex Needs Describe Their Handling of Specialised Personal Social Services in Sweden2017Ingår i: British Journal of Social Work, ISSN 0045-3102, E-ISSN 1468-263X, Vol. 47, nr 3, s. 611-629Artikel i tidskrift (Refereegranskat)
    Abstract [en]

    Dealing with specialised social service organisations can be a challenge for clients with complex needs. These organisations may appear confusing and hard to navigate, and there is also a risk of service fragmentation, as such clients often participate simultaneously in an array of interventions. An additional complication to be handled is that these parallel interventions can range from voluntary to more or less involuntary. The aim of the present article is to describe and analyse how clients with complex needs account for their handling of service conditions within specialised personal social services (PSS), using data from a qualitative interview study with PSS clients in Sweden. A conceptual model is presented, covering four ideal typical client approaches to these specialised services: consensus, resignation, fight and escape. One key finding is that the clients combined these approaches in a balancing act intended to promote their own best interests in their parallel contacts with different parts of the specialised PSS organisation. The article concludes that future improvements in social services could be made by paying more attention to the structural arrangements that surround encounters between clients and the social services, as well as clients’ valuable first-hand knowledge of social service organisations.

  • 2.
    Tham, Pia
    Högskolan i Gävle, Akademin för hälsa och arbetsliv, Avdelningen för socialt arbete och psykologi, Socialt arbete.
    A professional role in transition: Swedish child welfare social workers’ descriptions of their work in 2003 and 20142018Ingår i: British Journal of Social Work, ISSN 0045-3102, E-ISSN 1468-263X, Vol. 8, nr 2, s. 449-467Artikel i tidskrift (Refereegranskat)
    Abstract [en]

    This study is based on a follow-up in 2014 of a survey conducted in 2003 among Swedish child welfare social workers. The same questionnaire used in 2003 (n = 309) was distributed to social workers (n = 349) who, in 2014, were working with the same types of tasks as in the previously investigated areas. The overall aim was to examine and analyse how working conditions have developed over these eleven years. From the results, two general patterns emerge. The first shows a deterioration of their working conditions, with higher work demands, increased role conflicts and less possibility to influence important decisions. The intention to leave the workplace or the profession had also increased. The second overall pattern concerns the emerging changes in job content, where the work today seems to be focused on conducting investigations whereas the vast majority of the social workers in 2003 also mentioned other tasks, such as giving advice and support, as being part of their job content. Contrary to their wishes, the social workers of today seem to have less time to devote to direct contact with clients. The consequences of these changes for the professional role of social workers and for their clients are discussed.

  • 3.
    Tham, Pia
    Stockholms universitet, Institutionen för socialt arbete - Socialhögskolan.
    Factors Affecting Intention to Leave among Social Workers in Child Welfare2007Ingår i: British Journal of Social Work, ISSN 0045-3102, E-ISSN 1468-263X, Vol. 37, nr 7, s. 1225-1246Artikel i tidskrift (Refereegranskat)
    Abstract [en]

    This article addresses a topic that has not previously been researched in Sweden, i.e. factors associated with the intention of social workers to leave their place of work. A comprehensive questionnaire was distributed to 309 social workers in child welfare in the County of Stockholm (drop-out rate: 3 per cent). The study comprised a total of forty-two workgroups. All the social workers handling referrals and investigating the situation of children and youth in these areas were included. One of the most striking results was that although 54 per cent of the social workers had been at their current workplace for two years or less, 48 per cent intended to leave their jobs. A logistic regression analysis showed that the variable of greatest importance for the intention to leave the workplace was lack of human resource orientation within the organization, i.e. the extent to which personnel are rewarded for a job well done, feel well taken care of and where management is interested in their health and well-being. A final conclusion of this study is that when measuring the impact of different aspects of work tasks compared with some aspects of organizational culture, it becomes clear that the latter seem to be most important in this respect.

  • 4.
    Tham, Pia
    Stockholms universitet, Institutionen för socialt arbete - Socialhögskolan.
    Why are they leaving?: Factors Affecting Intention to Leave among Social Workers in Child Welfare2007Ingår i: British Journal of Social Work, ISSN 0045-3102, E-ISSN 1468-263X, Vol. 37, s. 1225-1246Artikel i tidskrift (Refereegranskat)
    Abstract [en]

    This article addresses a topic that has not previously been researched in Sweden, i.e. factors associated with the intention of social workers to leave their place of work. A comprehensive questionnaire was distributed to 309 social workers in child welfare in the County of Stockholm (drop-out rate: 3 per cent). The study comprised a total of forty-two workgroups. All the social workers handling referrals and investigating the situation of children and youth in these areas were included. One of the most striking results was that although 54 per cent of the social workers had been at their current workplace for two years or less, 48 per cent intended to leave their jobs. A logistic regression analysis showed that the variable of greatest importance for the intention to leave the workplace was lack of human resource orientation within the organization, i.e. the extent to which personnel are rewarded for a job well done, feel well taken care of and where management is interested in their health and well-being. A final conclusion of this study is that when measuring the impact of different aspects of work tasks compared with some aspects of organizational culture, it becomes clear that the latter seem to be most important in this respect.

  • 5.
    Tham, Pia
    et al.
    Stockholms universitet, Institutionen för socialt arbete - Socialhögskolan.
    Meagher, Gabrielle
    Department of Social Policy, Faculty of Education and Social Work, University of Sydney, Australia.
    Working in human services: How do experiences and working conditions in child welfare social work compare?2009Ingår i: British Journal of Social Work, ISSN 0045-3102, E-ISSN 1468-263X, Vol. 39, nr 5, s. 807-827Artikel i tidskrift (Refereegranskat)
    Abstract [en]

    Child welfare agencies in many rich countries are having difficulty recruiting and retaining social workers. However, these problems are not unique to child welfare: retention problems have also been widely reported in both mental and general health facilities. In this paper, we compare the perceptions of work and working conditions held by child welfare social workers with the perceptions held by other professional human service workers in the public sector in Sweden. Do the social workers' experiences of their tasks or organizational conditions differ from the other groups, and, if so, how? Are workforce problems particularly acute in child welfare, or do social workers in this field share more or less common problems with other human service professionals? We found that although social workers in general, and child welfare social workers in particular, made positive assessments of some dimensions of their working lives, social work was unusually demanding among human service professions on several measures of workload, complexity of tasks and quality of management. The strains of the job that social workers expressed call upon employers to promote working conditions that offer more support, and to recognize and value social workers for their work.

  • 6.
    Tham, Pia
    et al.
    Högskolan i Gävle, Akademin för hälsa och arbetsliv, Avdelningen för socialt arbete och kriminologi, Socialt arbete.
    Strömberg, Annika
    Högskolan i Gävle, Akademin för hälsa och arbetsliv, Avdelningen för arbetshälsovetenskap och psykologi, Arbetshälsovetenskap. Högskolan i Gävle, Centrum för belastningsskadeforskning.
    The Iron Cage of Leadership: The Role of First-line Managers in Child Welfare2019Ingår i: British Journal of Social Work, ISSN 0045-3102, E-ISSN 1468-263XArtikel i tidskrift (Refereegranskat)
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