Employee engagement, boredom and frontline construction workers feeling safe in their workplace

Article


Whiteoak, John W. and Mohamed, Sherif. 2016. "Employee engagement, boredom and frontline construction workers feeling safe in their workplace ." Accident Analysis and Prevention. 93, pp. 291-298. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.aap.2015.11.001
Article Title

Employee engagement, boredom and frontline construction workers feeling safe in their workplace

ERA Journal ID13370
Article CategoryArticle
AuthorsWhiteoak, John W. and Mohamed, Sherif
Journal TitleAccident Analysis and Prevention
Journal Citation93, pp. 291-298
Number of Pages8
YearAug 2016
PublisherEmerald
Place of PublicationUnited Kingdom
ISSN0001-4575
1879-2057
Digital Object Identifier (DOI)https://doi.org/10.1016/j.aap.2015.11.001
Web Address (URL)https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0001457515301160
Abstract

Systems thinking is a philosophy currently prevalent within construction safety literature that is applied to understand and improve safety in sociotechnical systems. Among systems, the site-project organizational system is of particular interest to this paper. Using focus group and survey feedback research to learn about how safety incidents effect levels of construction workers engagement this paper reveals how a safety incident provides an opportunity to create a potential quality (productivity) upgrade within an organization. The research approach involved a qualitative study involving 27 frontline supervisors and a follow-up survey completed by 207 frontline workers in the Australian Asphalt and Pavement Industry. The focus group interviews supported the articulation of the concepts of tacit safety, explicit safety, situational awareness, foresight ability, practical intelligence and crew synergy. Our findings indicate that having regular shift changes and other job site workers being fatigued are influential on perceptions of tacit safety. An individual's foresight ability was found to be the most potent predictor of worker perceptions of work engagement. The paper explains that relatively small improvements in worker perceptions of safety can bring about significant improvements in employee engagement and productivity.

KeywordsTacit safety; Explicit safety; Employee engagement; Group potency; Boredom; Conscientiousness
Contains Sensitive ContentDoes not contain sensitive content
ANZSRC Field of Research 2020350505. Occupational and workplace health and safety
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Byline AffiliationsUniversity of the Sunshine Coast
Griffith University
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