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Type: Journal article
Title: A qualitative study of HR/OHS stress interventions in Australian universities
Author: Pignata, S.
Winefield, A.
Boyd, C.
Provis, C.
Citation: International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health, 2018; 15(1):103-1-103-16
Publisher: MDPI
Issue Date: 2018
ISSN: 1661-7827
Statement of
Silvia Pignata, Anthony H. Winefield, Carolyn M. Boyd and Chris Provis
Abstract: To enhance the understanding of psychosocial factors and extend research on work stress interventions, we investigated the key human resource (HR)/occupational health and safety (OHS) stress interventions implemented at five Australian universities over a three-year period. Five senior HR Directors completed an online survey to identify the intervention strategies taken at their university in order to reduce stress and enhance employee well-being and morale. We also explored the types of individual-, organization-, and individual/organization-directed interventions that were implemented, and the strategies that were prioritized at each university. Across universities, the dominant interventions were strategies that aimed to balance the social exchange in the work contract between employee-organization with an emphasis on initiatives to: enhance training, career development and promotional opportunities; improve remuneration and recognition practices; and to enhance the fairness of organizational policies and procedures. Strategies to improve work-life balance were also prominent. The interventions implemented were predominantly proactive (primary) strategies focused at the organizational level and aimed at eliminating or reducing or altering work stressors. The findings contribute to the improved management of people at work by identifying university-specific HR/OHS initiatives, specifically leadership development and management skills programs which were identified as priorities at three universities.
Keywords: leadership; stress interventions; universities; well-being; work stress
Rights: © 2018 by the authors. Licensee MDPI, Basel, Switzerland. This article is an open access article distributed under the terms and conditions of the Creative Commons Attribution (CC BY) license (
RMID: 0030087072
DOI: 10.3390/ijerph15010103
Appears in Collections:Public Health publications

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