Rebecca Frizzell, Ph.D. (2015)
Dr. Patrick Knight
Title and Institution:
Research Psychologist, Department of Health and Human Services
Manufacturing satisfaction with work-family balance: the effects of employee type, technology use, & life role salience
Satisfaction with work-family balance is a relatively new construct that differs from other work-life constructs in several ways: it is not focused on conflict between work/family domains, does not include cross-domain transfer processes, has no directional implications, and is not multidimensional. The current study has three purposes: 1. Examine work-family balance issues for both blue-collar and white-collar employees, as the literature has focused mainly on white-collar employees. 2. Examine relationship between technology and satisfaction with work-family balance. 3. Assess how role salience influences satisfaction with work-family balance. Participants were recruited and compensated for completing a 60 item online survey via Qualtrics. Blue-collar participants were recruited from manufacturing industries, while no industry was specified for white-collar employees. The sample consisted of 210 participants (105 blue-collar, 105 white-collar). Several checks were included throughout the survey to ensure data quality. Two hierarchical regression analyses were conducted. The first regression revealed that boundary control and autonomy predict satisfaction with work-family balance, while employee type and boundary interruptions do not. Boundary control, family identity, and stress significantly predicted satisfaction with work-family balance in the second regression, while boundary interruptions, work identity, hours worked, and technology use did not. Results indicate white-collar workers have higher satisfaction with work-family balance, lower stress, and lower turnover intentions compared to blue-collar workers. Results also reveal that technology use to complete work outside of work hours is significantly and positively related to stress. Nearly half of participants report feeling expected to utilize technology to complete work outside of work hours. In addition, while it was hypothesized that those higher on family identity would have lower satisfaction with work-family balance when they used technology outside of work hours, worked longer hours, and had more frequent boundary interruptions than would those lower on family identity, the opposite effect was found for each of these variables. Implications of the study include: 1. Organizations may improve employee satisfaction with work-family balance by increasing autonomy and boundary control. 2. Employees may improve satisfaction with work-family balance by taking time to de-stress from work and limiting use of technology to complete work outside of work hours.