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Better Productivity and the Quality of Working Life through Collaborative Development of Work: Experiences from the Finnish Food Industry Businesses
Better Productivity and the Quality of Working Life through Collaborative Development of Work: Experiences from the Finnish Food Industry Businesses
Better Productivity and the Quality of Working Life through Collaborative Development of Work: Experiences from the Finnish Food Industry Businesses
Better Productivity and the Quality of Working Life through Collaborative Development of Work: Experiences from the Finnish Food Industry Businesses
Better Productivity and the Quality of Working Life through Collaborative Development of Work: Experiences from the Finnish Food Industry Businesses
Better Productivity and the Quality of Working Life through Collaborative Development of Work: Experiences from the Finnish Food Industry Businesses
Better Productivity and the Quality of Working Life through Collaborative Development of Work: Experiences from the Finnish Food Industry Businesses
Better Productivity and the Quality of Working Life through Collaborative Development of Work: Experiences from the Finnish Food Industry Businesses
Better Productivity and the Quality of Working Life through Collaborative Development of Work: Experiences from the Finnish Food Industry Businesses
Better Productivity and the Quality of Working Life through Collaborative Development of Work: Experiences from the Finnish Food Industry Businesses
Better Productivity and the Quality of Working Life through Collaborative Development of Work: Experiences from the Finnish Food Industry Businesses
Better Productivity and the Quality of Working Life through Collaborative Development of Work: Experiences from the Finnish Food Industry Businesses
Better Productivity and the Quality of Working Life through Collaborative Development of Work: Experiences from the Finnish Food Industry Businesses
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Better Productivity and the Quality of Working Life through Collaborative Development of Work: Experiences from the Finnish Food Industry Businesses

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Presentation by Ms. Tuula Eloranta (Research Manager, University of Helsinki) on "Better Productivity and the Quality of Working Life through Collaborative Development of Work: Experiences from the …

Presentation by Ms. Tuula Eloranta (Research Manager, University of Helsinki) on "Better Productivity and the Quality of Working Life through Collaborative Development of Work: Experiences from the Finnish Food Industry Businesses" during the study visit of the sub-committee on Innovative workplaces to Helsinki on 25 January 2011

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  • 1. Workshop on Innovative Workplaces Better Productivity and the Quality of Working Life through Collaborative Development of Work Tuula Eloranta 25.1.2011 Department of Economics and Management
  • 2. Introduction
    • The food industry is second in the sickness absence statistics of all industries.
    • The rate of absences due to illness is 7,2 %, and its costs are more than EUR 200 million /year.
    • The costs are often as much as company´s profit.
    • Quality cost´s are 10-20% of company turnovers.
    • Studies reveal that at least a third of the absences could be prevented by improving the quality of working life.
    • The quality of working life also has a connection to early retirement.
    • In the food industry's research
      • 23% considered the atmosphere at work to be tense.
      • 59% considered the work well-organised.
      • 46% believes that his/her health would allow him/her to work in his/her job until retirement (different industries 77%)
  • 3. Example of the costs
    • Turnover EUR 25M
    • Result EUR 1M
    • Number of staff 170
    • Absences due to illness 6%, about EUR 670,000
    • The objective is 3 % when the amount of savings will be EUR 335,000
    • Quality costs are about 10% of turnover, about EUR 2.5M
    • The objective is 8% when the amount of savings will be EUR 500,000
    • The result would improve by 80%
  • 4. Productivity in the Food Industry 2007–2009
    • Productivity in the Food Industry is a research and development programme coordinated by the University of Helsinki.
    • The emphasis of the programme was to determine
      • the causes for absences due to illness and
      • the investment-efficiency ratio of developing the working life
      • and spread the best practices for everyday life, industrial safety and occupational health care.
    • The financers of the programme include 9 companies, the Centre For Occupational Safety, the Finnish Work Environment Fund, the Finnish Workplace Development Programme , and pension insurance companies as well as accident insurance companies.
    • Programme will be spread to other industries in next 5 years.
  • 5. Methods
    • An 18-month development programme was carried out in the companies
    • A working day was held every 3 to 4 weeks. Development paths included everyday life, industrial safety and occupational health care.
    • The used development method was a small group model with which the whole staff systematically takes part in the development of the organization and their own work.
    • Employees from seven companies took part in a surveys in autumn 2007 ( n = 693) and spring 2009 (n = 482).
    • The survey focussed on the functioning of the work community, the wellbeing of the staff and their health.
    • In addition, data on the percentage of absences due to illness before and during the programme was collected.
    • The data was analysed by Pearson's correlations and regression analysis.
  • 6. Results by developing everyday activities
    • Competence and
    • interaction and cooperation skills
    • multi-skilled
    • process management
    • tacit knowledge will increase
    • Wellbeing and
    • work satisfaction will improve
    • sick leave and
    • accidents will decrease
    • Efficiency of organisation
    • will improve through
    • process fluency
    • quality
    • productivity
    • learning from experiences
    • Small groups develop
    • clarity of basic task
    • smoothness and safety of work
    • rules
    • management and leadership
    • flow of information
    • operating models /processes
    • The atmosphere will improve and
    • the respect
    • team spirit
    • readiness for change
    • initiative and
    • internal entrepreneurship will increase
    - It is estimated that about half of financial benefits attained have to do with decrease of sick leave and accident related costs and the other half with increased productivity of staff (Ahonen et al. 2001)
  • 7. Structure of the small group model
  • 8. The development of absence rates
    • Starting point 10/6–09/7 before the project -> final state 6-8/09
    • 8,5 ->7,3 -1,2%
    • 10,6 ->7,3 -3,3%
    • 6,9->6,3 -0,6%
    • 11,6 ->13,2 +1,6% The staff did not participate, only superiors and key personnel
    • 6,4 ->4,9 -1,5%
    • 9,4 ->7,6 -1,8%
    • 5,3 ->3,7 -1,6%
    • 8,5 ->4,2 -4,3%
    • Participation of the staff varied from ten per cent almost to a hundred. Participation activity also shows in the results.
    • The use of working time was less than 0.1 to 8% (a few key personnel).
    • The payback from the project is multifold compared to the contribution.
    • For example, for 100 people, salary EUR 2,800 per month; the cost of 1 per cent of absences is about EUR 100,000
  • 9. In those companies, where the abcence rate was lower
    • there were less upper body symptoms
    • be tter practices of continuous development
    • greater disregard for individuals
    • better support of the supervisors
    • better flow of the working group
    • better management
    • better organized work
    • solving problems was considered more fluent
    • In well organized workplaces atmosphere and mental and physical wellbeing were better
    • The personnel in these workplaces were more frequently of the opinion that their health would allow them to work in their jobs until retirement.
  • 10. Sickness absences an d quality of working life
    • Higher percentages of the absences were linked with
    • organization of work
    • continuous improvement of operations
    • taking people into consideration
    • physical workload
    • atmosphere
    • how one's own working group functions
    • upper body symptoms
    • certainty of work
  • 11. Thoughts of early retirement and quality of working life
    • Thoughts of retirement were linked to
    • physical workload
    • physical condition and ability to work
    • organization of work
    • psychological wellbeing
    • opportunities to influence
    • taking people into consideration
    • management of change
    • training
    • certainty of work
    • atmosphere
    • committing to organisation
  • 12. Conclusion
    • The quality of working life has a great bearing on
    • the wellbeing of employees, number of absences due to illness as
    • well as premature retirement.
    • The most important methods in reducing absences were participating small group –method (continuous development) , near-accident reports and employee-superiors discussions ( bringing up difficult matters ) and c ooperation with insurance companies and occupational health care.
    • Occupational health care took active part in the company's activities and planning investments.
    • In motivating superiors to actively practice these models, their legal and economic training was extremely important.
    • Also m onitoring/indicators of central tools were built.
    • The difference between a well-functioning and a not functioning system is very fine.
    • The companies are well-advised to invest in a smooth flow of work, continuous development and participating methods to increase wellbeing and productivity.
  • 13. Additional information
    • Tuula Eloranta, Research Director
    • Department of Economics and Management
    • P.O.Box 28
    • FIN-00014 University of Helsinki
    • tuula.eloranta@helsinki.fi/ tel. +358 50 555 0234
    • Jonna Puisto, Researcher
    • Department of Economics and Management
    • P.O.Box 28
    • FIN-00014 University of Helsinki
    • jonna.ihalainen@helsinki.fi / tel. +358 50 415 4707

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