Working time alterations within the Australian construction industry

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Title Working time alterations within the Australian construction industry
Author Townsend, Keith John; Lingard, Helen; Bradley, Lisa; Brown, Kerry
Journal Name Personnel Review
Year Published 2011
Place of publication United Kingdom
Publisher Emerald Group Publishing Ltd
Abstract Abstract Purpose – The purpose of this paper is to provide a labour process theory interpretation of four case studies within the Australian construction industry. In each case study a working time intervention (a shift to a five-day working week from the industry standard six days) was implemented as an attempt to improve the work-life balance of employees. Design/methodology/approach – This paper was based on four case studies with mixed methods. Each case study has a variety of data collection methods which include questionnaires, short and long interviews, and focus groups. Findings – It was found that the complex mix of wage- and salary-earning staff within the construction industry, along with labour market pressures, means that changing to a five-day working week is quite a radical notion within the industry. However, there are some organisations willing to explore opportunities for change with mixed experiences. Practical implications – The practical implications of this research include understanding the complexity within the Australian construction industry, based around hours of work and pay systems. Decision-makers within the construction industry must recognize a range of competing pressures that mean that “preferred” managerial styles might not be appropriate. Originality/value – This paper shows that construction firms must take an active approach to reducing the culture of long working hours. This can only be achieved by addressing issues of project timelines and budgets and assuring that take-home pay is not reliant on long hours of overtime.
Peer Reviewed Yes
Published Yes
Alternative URI http://dx.doi.org/10.1108/00483481111095528
Volume 40
Issue Number 1
Page from 70
Page to 86
ISSN 0048-3486
Date Accessioned 2012-03-22; 2012-06-04T23:05:55Z
Date Available 2012-06-04T23:05:55Z
Research Centre Centre for Work, Organisation and Wellbeing
Faculty Griffith Business School
Subject Industrial Relations
URI http://hdl.handle.net/10072/45490
Publication Type Journal Articles (Refereed Article)
Publication Type Code c1

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