Work organisation

Overview

Work organisation is continually changing to meet new demands, including the use of new technologies and workplace innovation. In an enlarged Europe, and in a globalised labour market, improving productivity is a priority for business survival.

The recent project on Work organisation and innovation explores the links between innovations in work organisation – under the broader label of high performance work practices (HPWPs) – and the potential benefits for both employees and organisations.

The report Working conditions in the European Union: work organisation examines the four main types of work organisation that exist in Europe:  ‘discretionary learning’, ‘lean production’, ‘Taylorist’, and ‘traditional’ or ‘simple structure’ forms of work organisation.

Among its main findings, Eurofound's report Work organisation, technology and working conditions states that jobs can be divided into four different work organisation contexts: active, passive, high and low strain. Work autonomy and work intensity are important factors within these contexts. The intensification of work can be a significant cause of stress.

The European working conditions surveys also question workers regarding their pace of work and job content.

There is increasing interest in greater flexibility in work organisation. The Foundation has undertaken research into various aspects of teleworking in the EU, and has published a number of reports detailing the legal/contractual situation of teleworkers; their position as regards social security; and the health and safety aspects of telework.

A new organisation of time over working life provides new empirical evidence of changing work biographies and relevant working time options, including their diffusion, practice and uptake.

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