Homeworking, well-being and the Covid-19 pandemic: A diary study

Wood, Stephen James, Michaelides, George ORCID: https://orcid.org/0000-0002-4224-7728, Inceoglu, Ilke, Hurren, Elizabeth T., Daniels, Kevin ORCID: https://orcid.org/0000-0002-8620-886X and Niven, Karen (2021) Homeworking, well-being and the Covid-19 pandemic: A diary study. International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health, 18 (14). ISSN 1660-4601

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As a response to the Covid-19 pandemic, many governments encouraged or mandated homeworking wherever possible. This study examines the impact of this public health initiative on homeworkers’ well-being. It explores if the general factors such as job autonomy, demands, social support and work–nonwork conflict, which under normal circumstances are crucial for employees’ well-being, are outweighed by factors specific to homeworking and the pandemic as predictors of well-being. Using data from four-week diary studies conducted at two time periods in 2020 involving university employees in the UK, we assessed five factors that may be associated with their well-being: job characteristics, the work–home interface, home location, the enforced nature of the homeworking, and the pandemic context. Multi-level analysis confirms the relationship between four of the five factors and variability in within-person well-being, the exception being variables connected to the enforced homeworking. The results are very similar in both waves. A smaller set of variables explained between-person variability: psychological detachment, loneliness and job insecurity in both periods. Well-being was lower in the second than the first wave, as loneliness in-creased and the ability to detach from work declined. The findings highlight downsides of homeworking, will be relevant for employees’ and employers’ decisions about working arrangements post-pandemic, and contribute to the debate about the limits of employee well-being models centred on job characteristics.

Item Type: Article
Uncontrolled Keywords: covid-19 pandemic: job autonomy,detachment from work,homeworking,loneliness,social support,work–nonwork conflict,pollution,public health, environmental and occupational health,health, toxicology and mutagenesis,sdg 3 - good health and well-being ,/dk/atira/pure/subjectarea/asjc/2300/2310
Faculty \ School: Faculty of Social Sciences > Norwich Business School
UEA Research Groups: Faculty of Social Sciences > Research Groups > Employment Systems and Institutions
Related URLs:
Depositing User: LivePure Connector
Date Deposited: 01 Jul 2021 00:17
Last Modified: 23 Oct 2022 02:35
URI: https://ueaeprints.uea.ac.uk/id/eprint/80361
DOI: 10.3390/ijerph18147575


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