Sa-OR-S137-2 - A Structural Model Of Work Intensity, Workaholism, Burnout And Musculoskeletal Complaints

Burnout and fatigue
Oral Presentation
Part of:
15 minutes
Intel Theatre
Employee stress and burnout
Burnout and fatigue
A structural model of work intensity, workaholism, burnout and musculoskeletal complaints
L. de Beer 1,*, G. Engelbrecht 1
1North-West University, Potchefstroom, South Africa
Employees face increasing demands in the modern sphere of work due to factors such as challenging economic conditions and the pursuit of professional goals. This increases the intensity of work and can increase workaholic behaviour, burnout and even affect physical health, such as musculoskeletal complaints (MSC). This study tests a preliminary structural model to ascertain the relationships between work intensity, workaholism, burnout and musculoskeletal complaints in a large engineering firm.
The sample consisted of 398 white collar workers, with majority female participation. Mplus 7.4 was used to perform the statistical analyses. A structural model was specified with work intensity as a total score and latent variables for workaholism, burnout and MSC. Three potential indirect relationships, i.e. mediation models, existed within the specified model and bootstrapping with 95% confidence intervals was used to investigate these relationships.
The results revealed that the model was an adequate fit to the data (CFI=0.93; TLI=0.93; RMSEA=0.06). Correlations showed that all of the variables were statistically significantly positively correlated with one another at a minimum effect size of medium. The regression results also showed that all of the specified relationships between the variables were statistically significant. All three potential mediating effects were found to be significant, i.e. did not cross zero.
The results supported that work intensity, workaholism and burnout has a positive relationship with MSC – which is in line with the health impairment process of the job-demands resources model which indicates that when demands are high – and sufficient effort-recovery is not sought – that employee energetic capacity is affected and this leads to a downward spiral into burnout and eventual ill-health complaints. The importance of effort-recovery and a balanced workload should be stressed within organisations.

North-West University
Associate Professor

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