This is an archived release.
Fewer conflicts in the workplace
In 1989, 39 per cent of employees said that they occasionally or frequently experienced conflicts between employees and managers. In 1993 the figure rose to 42 per cent. In 1996 it sank to 34 per cent, and in 2000 the share experiencing such conflicts was down to 31 per cent.
The same trend applied to relationships among employees. In 1989, 26 per cent and in 1993 27 per cent of employees said that they occasionally or frequently experienced conflicts between employees. In 1996 the share fell to 21 per cent and in 2000 the percentage was down to 18 per cent.
On the other hand, more employees say they are experiencing conflicts with customers, clients, pupils and the like. The portion who frequently or occasionally experience such conflicts has increased from 15 per cent in 1996 to 18 per cent in 2000. Around half of all employees say that their work is determined to a great extent by customers, clients, pupils and the like.
Women more susceptible to violence and harassment
Fully 11 per cent of women employees aged 16-24 replied that they were subjected a couple of times per month or more to unwanted sexual attention, comments and the like. The average for all women is 4 per cent vs. 1 per cent for men. A higher percentage of women than men also said that they were subjected to violence or threats of violence in conjunction with work. Eight per cent of female employees said that they were subjected to violence or threats of violence a couple of times per month or more, against 4 per cent of male employees.
More control over how employees do their work
One in four say that they can decide their duties and assignments to a high degree, about the same as in 1996. On the other hand, it appears that control of how the work is to be carried out has increased. Fifty-seven per cent of employees said in 2000 that they could decide to a high degree how to perform their duties and assignments, a decline of 7 percentage points since 1996. During the same period, there has been a decline in the portion who say that they to a high degree can set quality requirements, from 43 per cent in 1996 to 37 per cent in 2000. The only time no decline was noted was when it comes to the opportunity to set deadlines and work tempo. On the contrary the figures indicate a small increase in autonomy.
All indicators of autonomy on the job indicate that it is greater for men than women. For men there is simultaneously a clear tendency that the older they are the more control they have over the performance and quality requirements of their work. For women the situation is somewhat different. Women employees aged 25-44 years have higher autonomy than younger women (16-24), and just as high or higher autonomy than older women (45-66 years).
There are also more men than women who to a high degree can decide when to take holidays and days off, 48 per cent men against 38 per cent women, and who work flexible hours and do not have to be at work at a certain time, 34 per cent men against 26 per cent women.
One in four men can risk their own life or that of others if they make a mistake
Twenty-four per cent of male employees said that most of the time they are at work they could risk their own life or that of others if they make a mistake, against 16 per cent of women employees. There are also major differences between men and women with respect to material damage or production losses resulting from mistakes. Thirty-three per cent of male employees say that most of the time they can make mistakes causing considerable material damage or production losses, against 8 per cent of women.
Small changes in the physical working environment
There were small changes in the physical working environment from 1996 to 2000. For most indicators there are equally large or somewhat smaller percentages who said they were exposed to various physical working environment problems. Men were more exposed than women to very cold conditions, by a margin of 11 to 3 per cent, and to dust, gas or steam, by a margin of 13 to 5 per cent. Men were also more exposed than women to loud noise and vibrations, problems mainly associated with industrial workplaces.
More women than men said that they were exposed to poor indoor climates, by a margin of 43 to 25 per cent.
More women than men say they are susceptible to ergonomic strain. One in four women say there is a high risk of repetitive strain injuries in their work, compared with one in six men. On the other hand, by a margin of 8 to 4 per cent, twice as many men as women said they run a high risk of being involved in an industrial accident.
There are great differences between women and men with respect to the use of protective equipment. One in five men exposed to loud noise never uses ear protection, while the same applies to four out of five women. Slightly smaller differences were noted with respect to protection from unclean air, with half of all men and three out of four women exposed to dirty air saying that they never use protective equipment. There is little difference between women and men with respect to the use of protective equipment to protect against substances that irritate the skin, with one in three who is exposed never using protection. For the most part, these differences probably reflect the differences in the types of jobs that men and women have, e.g. the proportion of men in typical industrial jobs is high. But to some degree it can also show that men exposed to various problems are somewhat more seriously exposed than women.