Complicated working time arrangements: construction industry case study

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Publication details

Townsend, K, Lingard, H, Bradley, L & Brown, K 2012, 'Complicated working time arrangements: construction industry case study', Journal of Construction Engineering & Management, vol. 138, no. 3, pp. 443-448.

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This paper extends the understanding of working-time changes and work-life balance (WLB) through analyzing a case study where a reduction in working hours designed to assist the workforce in balancing work and nonwork life was implemented. An alliance project in the Australian construction industry was established initially with a 5-day working week, a departure from the industry-standard 6-day week. However, a range of factors complicated the success of this initiative, and the industry-standard 6-day working week was reinstated for the project. The authors argue that this case is valuable in determining the complex mix of influences that work against a wholesale or straightforward adoption of working-time adjustments and work-life balance practices. It is concluded that although the prevailing workplace culture is considered an important factor in the determination of working time, structural and workplace principles and practices may also be critical in working to secure the successful introduction of working-time reduction and work-life balance initiatives in the construction industry in the future.

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