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Occupational Health Campaign for Healthy Ageing in the Workplace

Info: 3898 words (16 pages) Nursing Essay
Published: 3rd Dec 2020

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OCCUPATIONAL HEALTH CAMPAIGN

Table of Contents

Introduction

Problem statement

Proposed solution

Discussion

Recommendation

Conclusion

Reference list

 

Introduction

The aim of the report is based on the healthy workplace campaign for the healthy ageing of the workforce for sustainable work and effectively managing the safety and health of the workplace in context to the ageing group at work. The study includes analyzing the background of the chosen organization that is NEAS, the challenges that are faced by the ageing workforce and the importance to retain the ageing workforce in the organization. The study includes the analysis of the healthy workplace campaign that measures the occupational health and safety factor for sustainable work. The study identifies the health issue of dementia that is mainly faced by the aged workgroup and to spread awareness by conducting a campaign to promote occupational health and safety. 

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Problem statement

The problem that mainly occurs in NEAS was the dementias that are mainly faced by the ageing workforce resulting in tampering the health and safety at the workforce. It was a matter of concern for the human resources and organizational development that arises from the ill health issues of the aged population. Various challenges were faced by the ageing workforce that disrupted the activities of the organization. The campaign was conducted to maintain awareness and spread knowledge among the organization.  The dementia that the ageing workforce is subjected to results in the communication gap in the services of NEAS. 

The occupational health and safety mainly prioritizes fostering a healthy and safe work environment for the employees. The problem occurred on various grounds of psychological physical, social and other factors. The problem that occurred in NEAS due to the involvement of both the young and aged workforce resulted in the intergenerational conflict due to the difference in opinions among the employees. The conflict occurred due to lack of coordination and the difference in strategy of work of the young and the aged workforce (Blancero et al. 2018). There is a difference in the productivity of the young and the aged group of employees. The other problem that occurred in NEAS is the discrimination among the young and the aged group based on their ability to work. Many employers are not willing to hire the aged working group because of the inefficiency of work in comparison to the younger workforce that is more active. The work at NEAS which is the ambulance service requires more active workforce that the aged group of people do not comply with. The aged group of workforce that suffers from dementia may result in risk factors in the service that is provided by NEAS as the aged group might forget the number of patients that are to be attended. The learning ability of the ageing workforce decrease with their age and hence it is difficult to train the ageing workforce in comparison to the young age group (Truxillo and Fraccaroli, 2016). In addition, the aged workforces are more prone to health issues and resulting in absentees that affect the working of the organization. It is difficult for the aged workforce to get adapted to the new techniques and technologies and hence difficult for them to execute the provided tasks. The problem occurs when the aged group are not able to get accustomed to the traditional working techniques of the ageing workforce and thus resulting in argument and delay in work.

Proposed solution

Occupational health and safety measures are important for all organizations. An organization needs to understand the importance of occupational health and safety for its entire workforce. The ageing workforces are valuable assets for an organization as they have experience and expertise. Sustainable work requires an emphasis on safety and health measures in an organization (Ritchie et al 2018). NEAS formed its Healthy workplace campaign in order to promote occupational safety and health benefits for the workforce. The occupational health campaign for NEAS focuses on dealing with the major occupational health issues. The proposed solution identifies five basic areas for improvement. These areas are working conditions, physical and psychological health, expressive dimension of work, reconciliation of working and non-working time and socioeconomic conditions.  

Working conditions: The organization aims at providing the ageing workforce working conditions that are suitable and less strenuous. The first step in this direction is regarding the shift works. The ageing workforce is given less night work. Night shifts can be tiring and cause health problem for the ageing workforce.  Dementia, shoulder pain are common problems in ageing employees. The ageing employees are given relaxation from working in shifts. This can help in reducing their physical strain and also gives them the time to rest at night (Pennington, 2016). Identifying the signs of dementia is necessary. Identifying early signs of dementia is necessary for treatment.  Reducing work stress and responsibility is one of the measures taken. 

Reconciliation of working and non-working time: it is difficult to maintain work-life balance with age. The ageing population finds it difficult to take time off for personal matter.  The proposed solution aims at assisting the ageing employees in creating a balance between working time and non-working time (Richert-Kaźmierska and Stankiewicz, 2016). This is done through the introduction of flexible working hours and promoting telecommuting facilities to the senior employees. The senior employees are allowed to work from the comfort of their home. This allows the ageing employees to spend more time with their family and take care of personal matters. 

Expressive dimension of work: The ageing workforces are usually given fewer opportunities at participating in training programs. The organization designs its training programs for the younger workforce, the proposed solution aims at conducting training programs for the ageing workforce as well. The ageing workforce often complains about being excluded from the opportunity to learn new skills. The training programs for the ageing employees can help in new skills acquisitions. Employees having dementia often go through the problem of low self-confidence. Involving them in training programs can increase their confidence as well as facilitate in equipping them with new skills (Chaplin and Davidson, 2016). 

Socioeconomic measures: the ageing workforce is often scared of losing the jobs. The older workforce is often thought to be less productive in comparison to the younger workforce.   The fear of job loss often results in economic insecurity among the ageing workforce (McCulloch et al. 2016). The proposed solution given by NEAS focused on employment status and job security. Senior employees holding high positions have secure jobs and high salaries, however not all ageing employees have high salaries or job security. Keeping this in mind the company has decided to give monetary benefits in the form of health insurances to the ageing employees. 

Physical and psychological health: Deteriorating health is a common problem in ageing employees. The physical health problems for old employees include problems like dementia, lack of energy and other chronic health problems (Calzavara et al. 2019). The physical health problems affect their psychological health. The physical and psychological problems affect the efficiency of the employees. The proposed solution for the ageing workforce involves is reduction in work strain. The employees with age fifty or above are not given jobs that involve physical labour. 

Communicating the campaign

Communication of the campaign within the workplace involves the use of both print medium and digital medium. Internal communication requires proper selection of medium and construction of the message to be delivered.  The formal communication channels are most appropriate for spreading awareness about the proposed solutions.  The formal communication theories in internal communication focus on top-down, horizontal and top-up communication.  The information related to the campaign follows the path of top-down communication. Written documents notifying the proposed campaign and the new measures to be adopted were given to the employees. The details of the campaign were sent through digital medium as well. Apart from sending the details of the campaign this also need for spreading awareness about the campaign. This purpose can be served through organizing seminars and conferences. There is a need for making all the employees aware of the reasons for which the campaign is undertaken. The measures decided can also be communicated in the conference.   

Measuring the effectiveness of the campaign

There are different ways of measuring the effectiveness of campaigns. Taking feedback from the employees can help in understanding the impact of the campaign. The organization can use the social media platform for getting reviews on the proposed solution. Direct conversations with the ageing workforce are another way of knowing about their views on the campaign.  This can help in identifying gaps in the campaign and implementing solutions accordingly.  Through observation, the perspectives of the employees can be gathered. The success of the campaign is measured through observation and feedback. The ageing employees and younger employees both can provide their opinion on the campaign. Apart from this observing the behaviour of the ageing employees can help in evaluating the success of the campaign.    

Discussion

Evaluating occupational health issues

The ageing workforce is an asset to any organization. Designing a campaign for promoting sustainable workplace and promoting the ageing populations can assist an organization in supporting the ageing workforce (Bengtsson and Qi, 2018). NEAS adopted a campaign for implementing sustainable health practices in the organization to promote ageing workforce.  Ageing workforce face problems like dementia and strain from work. Problems like dementia hamper not only the efficiency of the employee but also threaten the productivity of the organization (Boot, 2018). Some of the problems that were observed in the ageing workforce included forgetting important messages, sudden mood changes, disorientation of place and time, poor judgment, misplacing things and difficulty in performing familiar tasks. Such problems were common in the ageing employees. The proposed solution focuses on dealing with the problems in the older employees. The benefits that are expected from the proposed solution are reduction in stress level for the ageing employees. Early detection of dementia can be beneficial in dealing with problems like dementia. The working conditions are important in dealing with problems that are common in ageing employees. Reducing the work stress is resourceful in eliminating unnecessary drain of energy (Kumar and Srivastava, 2018). Older employee get tired easily, therefore, reducing certain amount of burden can be beneficial in reducing their stress. Reduction in stress leads to improved mental and physical health. Stress gives rise to adverse psychological effects on employees. Problems like losing temper easily are common results of stress. Bringing changes in the working conditions and reducing the workload is a significant measure in this respect. Eliminating shift works, especially night schedules are chosen as one of the steps for the ageing workforce (Cebulla and Wilkinson, 2019). The ageing workforce needs time to rest, working in shift can hamper their health. Therefore, the proposed solution ascertains that this problem is taken care of through removal of shift duties for ageing employees.  Problems like dementia affect the psychological condition of the employee. Striking a work-life balance for employees suffering from dementia can give them an opportunity to spend time on personal matters and family affairs. It can be relaxing for the ageing employee. Weak social support at work can be a burden for the employees. Providing social support at work and letting the employees have time to spend with the family can be beneficial (Nicholson and Sharp, 2016). 

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Problems like dementia influence the level of confidence in the employee. Dementia causes people to lose confidence in their abilities. Low self-esteem and a feeling that they are not needed any more development in the ageing employees. Dementia makes it difficult for the ageing employees to keep a grip on their self-confidence. Therefore, involving the ageing workforce in various training programs can help in boosting their confidence. It can resolve the problem of low confidence in the ageing workforce of the organization. The focus of the program is on the mental and physical wellbeing of the employees. Perceived job insecurity is common in ageing employees (Tay and Frimpong, 2017). The socioeconomic measures adopted by the company aims at assisting the ageing employees through insurances. Involving them in insurance schemes can give them assurance on financial aspects. Reducing the amount of physical labour can lessen the burden of ageing employees. It is difficult for ageing employees to undertake jobs that involve physical activities. 

Recommendation

It can be recommended from the outcomes of the report that the organization NEAS needs to conduct the campaign to spread awareness for the establishment of the ageing workforce and to implement those factors. The organization can aim at providing a healthy and safe working environment of the ageing workforce. They should be provided with flexible working hours so that they can work without much pressure. They can be provided relaxation on the basis of the health issues that they generally face. They can be provided with amenities like medication and support system in case of major health issues, most of the ageing workforce that suffer from dementia can be provided with write documents to keep track of their work as they tend to forget the work that is assigned to them. They can also be provided with facilities to work from the comfort of their homes. They can also be provided with the facilities of telecommuting where they can stay in regular touch with the superior workforces who can guide the ageing workforce on the tasks that are to be done ad to keep a check on the activities performed by them. Through this, they can perform the tasks at ease without much hindrance. The ageing workforce can be provided with the security of money and income as they are more insecure about losing the job and replacement. Proper communication channels can be maintained in the bottom-up and top-down format to analyze the productivity of the work that is done. The most important factor for the ageing workforce is motivation. At this age group of 50-60 and above people are more likely to get demotivated and feel deprived. The organizational campaign needs to conduct motivational factors for motivating the age group so that they work with vigour and efficiency. The organization can value their life experiences; this would give the workgroup a sense of priority and importance. Better communication channels can be conducted to maintain a harmonic and good relationship among the aged and the young workforce so that they can work in collaboration thus bridge the intergenerational gap. 

Conclusion

It can be concluded from the report that various challenges are faced by the ageing workforce and ways it can be curbed by the campaigns of NEAS. The study revolves around understanding the problem statement that occurs for the ageing workforce in NEAS. The study implied to the proposed solution of the problem that includes the communication gap, intergenerational gap and measures that can be undertaken to solve the issues. The study also focuses on the motivational factors and the communication abilities and how the motivational factors impact the productivity and the working efficiency of the aged workgroup in NEAS. The study is based on identification of the ill health issues and to mitigate those to maintain a healthy and safe workplace.

 

Reference list

Blancero, D.M., Mouriño-Ruiz, E. and Padilla, A.M., 2018. Latino Millennials—The New Diverse Workforce: Challenges and Opportunities. Hispanic Journal of Behavioral Sciences, 40(1), pp.3-21.

Available at: https://journals.sagepub.com/doi/pdf/10.1177/0739986317754080

Truxillo, D.M. and Fraccaroli, F. eds., 2016. Age in the workplace: Challenges and opportunities. Routledge. Available at: https://books.google.com/books?hl=en&lr=&id=_LtYCwAAQBAJ&oi=fnd&pg=PP1&dq=aged+workforce+challenges&ots=LPAu9Daznd&sig=TJ87Pfp5WXt_BlbbrveYvwLTC_w

Ritchie, L., Tolson, D. and Danson, M., 2018. Dementia in the workplace case study research: understanding the experiences of individuals, colleagues and managers. Ageing & Society, 38(10), pp.2146-2175. Available at: https://www.researchgate.net/profile/Louise_Ritchie/publication/318027491_Dementia_in_the_workplace_case_study_research_understanding_the_experiences_of_individuals_colleagues_and_managers/links/5c3c9cec458515a4c72590b0/Dementia-in-the-workplace-case-study-research-understanding-the-experiences-of-individuals-colleagues-and-managers.pdf

Pennington, D., 2016, October. Supporting workplace information needs of people with dementia. In ASIS&T Annual Meeting 2016 (pp. 1-7). Available at:https://strathprints.strath.ac.uk/59665/1/Pennington_ASIST_2016_Supporting_workplace_information_needs_of_people_with_dementia.pdf

Chaplin, R. and Davidson, I., 2016. What are the experiences of people with dementia in employment?. Dementia, 15(2), pp.147-161. Available at: https://journals.sagepub.com/doi/pdf/10.1177/1471301213519252

McCulloch, S., Robertson, D. and Kirkpatrick, P., 2016. Sustaining people with dementia or mild cognitive impairment in employment: A systematic review of qualitative evidence. British Journal of Occupational Therapy, 79(11), pp.682-692. Available at: https://journals.sagepub.com/doi/pdf/10.1177/0308022616665402

Calzavara, M., Battini, D., Bogataj, D., Sgarbossa, F. and Zennaro, I., 2019. Ageing workforce management in manufacturing systems: state of the art and future research agenda. International Journal of Production Research, pp.1-19. Available at: https://www.tandfonline.com/doi/full/10.1080/00207543.2019.1600759

Boot, C.R.L., 2018. 1609c Chronic disease and work: challenges for the ageing workforce. Available at: https://oem.bmj.com/content/oemed/75/Suppl_2/A552.1.full.pdf

Kumar, R. and Srivastava, U.R., 2018. Ageing Workforce: Negative Age Stereotypes and their Impact on Older Workers. International Journal of Research in Social Sciences, 8(5), p.1. Available at: https://www.researchgate.net/profile/Ravi_Kumar678/publication/329415881_Ageing_Workforce_Negative_Age_Stereotypes_and_their_Impact_on_Older_Workers/links/5c98889ca6fdccd460385775/Ageing-Workforce-Negative-Age-Stereotypes-and-their-Impact-on-Older-Workers.pdf

Cebulla, A. and Wilkinson, D., 2019. Responses to an Ageing Workforce: Germany, Spain, the United Kingdom. Business Systems Research Journal, 10(1), pp.120-137. Available at: https://www.degruyter.com/downloadpdf/j/bsrj.2019.10.issue-1/bsrj-2019-0009/bsrj-2019-0009.pdf

Nicholson, P.J. and Sharp, C., 2016. Addressing the challenge of an ageing workforce. Available at: https://academic.oup.com/occmed/article/66/7/502/2222684

Tay, G. and Frimpong, K., 2017. Examining the Contributions of the Older Workforce in the UK Hospitality Industry. Journal of Academic, p.13. Available at: https://mrcollege.ac.uk/wp-content/uploads/2017/10/Journal-of-Academic-Reviews-Fourth-Edition.pdf#page=13

Bengtsson, T. and Qi, H., 2018. Ageing Workforce, Social Cohesion and Sustainable Development: Political Challenges within the Baltic Sea Region: Sweden. In Ageing Workforce, Social Cohesion and Sustainable Development: Political Challenges within the Baltic Sea Region. Max Planck Society/Population Europe. Available at: http://ls00012.mah.se/bitstream/handle/2043/27099/dp9_webversion.pdf?sequence=3&isAllowed=y

Richert-Kaźmierska, A. and Stankiewicz, K., 2016. Work–life balance: Does age matter?. Work, 55(3), pp.679-688. Available at: https://content.iospress.com/articles/work/wor2435 

 

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