Survey says work life implications from the budget cuts survey
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“Survey Says…”: Work-Life Implications from the Budget Cuts Survey. Tahira M. Probst, Ph.D. Washington State University Vancouver.

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Survey says work life implications from the budget cuts survey

“Survey Says…”: Work-Life Implications from the Budget Cuts Survey

Tahira M. Probst, Ph.D.

Washington State University Vancouver

This material is based upon work supported by the National Science Foundation (NSF) under Grant No. 0810927. Any opinions, findings, and conclusions expressed in this material are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily reflect the views of NSF. Further, nothing contained within this presentation should be interpreted as any attempt to influence or alter the policies or procedures of Washington State University or any other public entity or state agency.


Topics to focus on today

Topics to Focus on Today

  • Do certain groups experience more WFC and/or FWC?

  • Have the budget cuts had any effect on the work-family conflict experienced by WSU employees?

  • What are the outcomes of work-family conflict?

  • Are there any strategies to alleviate some of these negative effects?


Methodology samples

Methodology & Samples

  • All faculty (including chairs, deans, and academic directors), staff, and AP employees invited to participate in the study.

    • 61 chairs/deans/directors (67% response rate)

    • 647 tenure & non-tenure track faculty (~30%)

    • 1071 AP/staff (~30%)


Work life measures

Work-Life Measures

  • Two validated short measures of conflict between work and family spheres

  • Work-Family Conflict

    • I have to miss family activities due to the amount of time I must spend on work responsibilities.

    • I am often so emotionally drained when I get home from work that it prevents me from contributing to my family.

  • Family-Work Conflict

    • I have to miss work activities due to the amount of time I must spend on family responsibilities.

    • Because I am often stressed from family responsibilities, I have a hard time concentrating on my work.


Survey says work life implications from the budget cuts survey

Gender and

Employee Group Differences


Faculty findings

Faculty Findings

  • Women faculty report significantly more work-to-family conflict than men.

  • Men report significantly more family-to-work conflict than women.

  • Overall, work interferes with family life more than family interferes with work.


Staff findings

Staff Findings

  • Interestingly, the pattern is somewhat different for staff/AP employees.


Work family conflict

Work-Family Conflict

  • Tenure track faculty (esp. women) report the highest levels of WFC compared to other employee groups; staff report the lowest.


Family work conflict

Family Work Conflict

  • TT Faculty report significantly more FWC than non-TT faculty or AP employees.

  • Men report significantly more FWC than women.


Survey says work life implications from the budget cuts survey

Effects of Budget Cuts

on WFC and FWC


Faculty exposure to the budget cuts

Faculty Exposure to the Budget Cuts

Compared to before the recession (i.e., prior to 2008, …”

  • Have you been asked to raise your course caps?

  • Have you had fewer opportunities to teach during the summer?

  • Do you have fewer resources to teach effectively?

  • Have you lost opportunities to teach DDP/online courses?

  • Do you have fewer resources to conduct your research?

  • Do you have less opportunity to network professionally?

    Perceived Impact of Budget Cuts

  • Budget cuts have negatively affected my ability to teach.

  • The budgetary climate at WSU has negatively affected my scholarly productivity.

  • Budget cuts are harmful to my department.


Predictors of wfc among faculty

Predictors of WFC among Faculty

  • Faculty with greater exposure to the budget cuts reported more WFC.

  • Faculty who reported that their teaching and research had been negatively affected by the budget cuts reported more WFC.

  • Faculty who predicted more cuts in the future reported more WFC.


Budget cuts and wfc

Budget Cuts and WFC


Budget cuts and fwc

Budget Cuts and FWC

  • Interestingly (but perhaps not surprisingly), budget cuts do not have any significant relationship with FWC.


Budget cuts and staff outcomes

Budget Cuts and Staff Outcomes

  • Three Measures

    • Number of Budget Cuts Experienced in Unit

      • freeze on hiring, travel, pay and benefit increases, staff layoffs, loss of vacant/open staff positions, reduction in goods & services budget, reduction/consolidation/ reorganization of services

    • Number of Resulting Job Changes

      • changed supervisors, new work tasks/ added work responsibilities, pay cut, job demotion, lower job status, new coworkers, new policies, coworkers laid off, working longer hours than expected or contracted, increased need to take work home, access to fewer resources

    • Impact of Budget Cuts

      • “Budget cuts have negatively affected my ability to complete my work tasks.”


Predictors of staff ap wfc

Predictors of Staff/AP WFC

  • Number of job changes and impact were more important predictors of WFC than number of budget cuts per se.


Budget cuts and fwc1

Budget Cuts and FWC

  • As with the faculty data, neither the number of budget cuts, the number of resulting job changes, nor perceived impact were significantly predictive of Family-Work Conflict.


Survey says work life implications from the budget cuts survey

Outcomes of WFC and FWC


Psychological contract

Psychological Contract

  • Psychological contract

    • Employee beliefs about the relationship between employee and employer

    • Unspoken and informal understandings or beliefs (may or may not be accurate)

    • Specifies the contributions that employees believe they owe to their employer (“Employee Promises”) and the obligations and benefits they believe are owed in return (“WSU Promises”)


Wfc and psychological contracts

WFC and Psychological Contracts

  • As WFC increases, employees believe that they are holding up their end of the contract to a greater extent than WSU.


Fwc and psychological contracts

FWC and Psychological Contracts

  • As FWC increases, employees increasingly believe that they are not holding up their end of the contract with WSU.


Wfc and job satisfaction

WFC and Job Satisfaction

  • Higher levels of WFC among faculty and staff were related to less satisfaction with:

    • Coworkers

    • Work tasks

    • Supervisors

    • Job Security

    • Pay and Promotions

  • On the other hand, FWC had no relationship with these job attitudes


Wfc and retention outcomes

WFC and Retention Outcomes

  • Higher levels of WFC among faculty and staff were related to:

    • greater perception that WSU is asking more in exchange for less (i.e., erosion in the employee-employer relationship)

    • less trust in the WSU administration

    • lower commitment/loyalty to WSU, and

    • greater intentions to quit.

  • On the other hand, FWC was only predictive of less commitment among staff/AP respondents.


Wfc and engagement burnout

WFC and Engagement/Burnout

  • Engagement  dedication to and absorption in one’s work

  • Burnout  cynicism and work-related exhaustion

  • Among faculty,

    • WFC is related to higher burnout, but was unrelated to engagement.

    • On the other hand, FWC was related to more burnout and lower engagement.

  • Among staff,

    • WFC was related to higher burnout, but also more engagement.

    • FWC was related to more burnout and less engagement.


Staff ap well being outcomes

Staff/AP Well-Being Outcomes

  • Work-family conflict was related to:

    • Lower mental well-being

      • Feeling downhearted/blue/nervous

    • More physical health complaints

      • e.g., trouble sleeping, frequent colds, high blood pressure

    • Lower life satisfaction

  • Family-work conflict was related to:

    • Lower mental well-being

    • Lower life satisfaction


Does anything help

Does Anything Help?

  • Supervisor Support

    • degree to which supervisors value their contributions and care about their well-being

  • Supportive Organizational WF Policies

    • Not just “on paper”, but actually encouraging faculty and staff to take advantage of these policies

  • Coping Skills Training

    • Employees who use help-seeking and action-oriented coping strategies fare better than employees use avoidant or resigned coping mechanisms


Questions

Questions?


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