Work compatibility: An integrated diagnostic tool for evaluating musculoskeletal responses to work and stress outcomes

Ash Genaidy, Waldemar Karwowski, Richard Shell, Ahmed Khalil, Setenay Tuncel, Sherill Cronin, Sam Salem

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

19 Scopus citations

Abstract

Advances in human-based systems have progressed at a slower pace than those for technological systems. This is largely attributed to the complex web of variables that jointly influence work outcomes, making it more difficult to develop a quantitative methodology to solve this problem. Thus, the objective of this study was to develop and validate work compatibility as a diagnostic tool to evaluate musculoskeletal and stress outcomes. Work compatibility is defined as a latent variable integrating the positive and negative impact characteristics of work variables in the human-at-work system in the form of a prescribed relationship. The theoretical basis of work compatibility is described at length in terms of concepts and models. In addition, approximate reasoning solutions for the compatibility variables are presented in terms of three models, namely, linear, ratio, and expert. A test case of 55 service workers in a hospital setting has been used to validate work compatibility with respect to severe musculoskeletal and high stress outcomes. The results have demonstrated that the expert compatibility model provided the stronger and more significant associations with work outcomes in comparison to the linear and ratio compatibility models. In conclusion, although the work compatibility validation is limited by both the cross-sectional design and sample size, the promising findings of this exploratory investigation suggest that further studies are warranted to investigate work compatibility as a diagnostic tool to evaluate musculoskeletal and stress outcomes in the workplace.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1109-1131
Number of pages23
JournalInternational Journal of Industrial Ergonomics
Volume35
Issue number12
DOIs
StatePublished - Dec 1 2005

Keywords

  • Cross-sectional design
  • Demands
  • Energizers
  • Service enterprise
  • Work compatibility

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Human Factors and Ergonomics
  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health

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