Background of the research:
In the fast paced world, achieving an exclusive work-life balance has become a pipe dream and a wasted effort to achieve the same. People are undertaking more pressure in order to be successful in their professional life; which clearly means the work-life balance is reducing. People have to compromise their hobbies or their ensemble with community. Reading Perrons (2017), it has been observed that the increasing pressure in work has resulted in major health drawbacks as well. Diseases related to stress, psychological issues are common that people face when there lacks proper work-life balance. Moreover, the situation becomes worse for the married women as they also have to maintain a personal and family life as well (Hougaard et al. 2016). Therefore, this particular research focuses on the work-life balance among the working women employees of Australia and its impact on the health and well being of the women.
Several researches have been made on the problems and issues of work-life balance. The increasing work pressure has lead to the situation where problems are not only limited to balancing the work with the responsibility of family but the situation is leading to serious health issues as well. The aim of this research is to focus on the health issues that the Australian working women have been facing as a result of the increasing work pressure and the inability to maintain a work-life balance.
Statement of research problem:
The issue that has been identified for this particular research study is the declining health condition of the working women due to the increasing work pressure and their inability to maintain a particular work-life balance. In the article, Shanafelt et al., (2015) commented that the working women face various types of issues both at the workplace and in family in terms of maintaining a work-life balance. This pressure ultimately leads to the degrading situation of health and well being of the women and so they have to suffer.
Long hours of job, poorer job satisfaction and the increasing stress-related issues have been found to increase in the recent time. As commented by Brough et al. (2014), women have also become work centric and they are prioritizing their work than their family. However, at times it has been found that the increasing pressure ultimately leads to huge pressure for them that lead to sickness.
If certain approaches are not made to overcome the distress, the situation might degrade and the health issues might increase that could be threatening for these women. This particular research focuses on the major reasons of the increasing gap between work and life. In addition to this, the study shall focus on proposing certain ways that would help the working women to maintain a balance between work and family.
The research objectives are as follows:
- To find out the demands from families that interfere with the work that ultimately lead to stress among the women employees
- To examine the various reasons that cause health related issues among the working women of Australia
- To evaluate the approaches made by the Australian Companies to support work-life balance among the working women of Australia
- To recommend certain ways that could help the working women to overcome the work stress and support a healthy life for themselves.
Q1. What are the major factors leading to the conflict between workplace and families, among the working women of Australia?
Q2. How the identified issues lead to the degrading health issues of the working women of Australia?
Q3. What steps do the Australian organizations undertake in order to help the working women to support a work-life balance?
Q4. What possible steps can be taken by these women to achieve a balance between the workplace and the families?
The successful completion of the research study shall lead to better outcomes. For instances, the research shall help in understanding the actual problems and issues that the working women face in terms of meeting the demand of the workplace and that of families. Moreover, since, the outcome of the research would be based on primary research, the perspective of the working women would be known that would help to frame the recommendations more clearly. Eventually, the research would help to propose better ways to the working women of Australia to maintain and balance their work and life.
Current situation of work pressure among Australians:
As stated by Jones et al. (2013), there are many issues related to the Australian labor market. In order to maintain a healthy life style, 39 hours of work in a week has been proposed as the work time for the employees. However, the situation does not resemble the similar thing and the Australians are found to work for more hours that they should. This is the reason that the employees are finding it difficult to maintain a work life balance in their life. In the view point of Fujimoto and Azmat (2014), it is when the employees start to work more than their designated duration they are faced with certain challenges in their life. Issues related to health and welfare is common among them. This is the time that the employees shall start considering their health and concentrate on things that would not put their lives at risk.
Haar et al. (2014) stated that workplace is not the only place where people are responsible for taking pressure but each and every individual is equally responsible for other life activities as well. If the part of family responsibility is taken into consideration, it has to be said that family is the most important part of life for the people and this is the reason, people do not want to compromise with their families (Baker et al. 2014). However, when it comes to maintaining a balance with the work and the family life, the situation do not remain the same for every individual. In fact, most of them find is difficult to match pace with the work and life activities. In case of women, the situation is somewhat more critical because they have greater responsibilities to perform in their life.
Impact of increasing work pressure on the health of the people:
As stated by Christensen and Schneider, (2015), maintaining a work life balance is not the similar for every person. The work load or pressure varies from one person to other. It is when people are not being able to undertake the pressure, they are found to suffer from certain illness. As a result of not being able to maintain the work and family life balance, the employees are often found to get trapped in family conflicts that lead to greater tension among the individuals. If the case of family life is taken into account then it has to be said that a family comprised of a number of members. The married women have the responsibility of their in-laws and their children as well (Galea et al. 2014). Taking care of the children is a time consuming and important responsibility that the women perform. If at the same time, the women have to work as employees in the office, it becomes very challenging for them to maintain the balance between the work and life. This is when these working women are found to suffer from certain illness.
Reading McCarthy et al. (2013), it has been found that the most common diseases that the working women suffer from is hyper tension, work stress, anxiety and certain psychological issues as well. This ultimately led to the situation when these women are found to suffer from serious psychological or physical illness because they are not being able to maintain a balance in their work and life. Therefore, at this time, it is most important to consider certain outcomes that would eventually help these women to overcome the challenges that they face in maintaining their work and life balance.
Contribution of employers in creating work life balance within the work place:
In Australia, there have been many occasions when focus has been made on improving the work culture of the employees and help the employees to lead a better life that they deserve. However, considering the increasing competition in the market and the advent of globalization, it has been found that the employers could not help the employees much in maintaining a work life balance in their life. As argued by Martin et al. (2016), that it should be the utter responsibility of the employers to consider the part of the employees’ welfare and think of better ways to improve their life. A number of ways have been proposed that would eventually help the employees to maintain a healthy work-life balance. For instance, the employees can be given the opportunity of flexible work hours or the opportunity of work from home facilities. This way, the employees would be able to concentrate on both the sides. The employers should also take care of the fact that the employees maintain a particular balance at their work and that they should be given the opportunity to come up with any kind of idea that they want to share with the other people in the organization (Galea et al. 2014). The role of the Human Resource Management cannot be neglected in this process. The HR management needs to focus on the welfare and well being of the people because they are the ones who are responsible for taking care of the employees in an organization.
The research design selected for this particular study is the analytical or the descriptive research design. It is the means by which, a detailed analysis of the theories and the concepts used for the analysis of the study (Mackey and Gass 2015). The other research approaches like the explanatory or the exploratory research designs shall not be used for this study because that way, we shall not get a detailed approach of the theories and the concepts of the study under consideration.
Population of interest:
The working women of Sydney have been selected as the population of interest who shall be approached to gain right information about their present work life condition. The study is focused on the working women of Australia who have been married and have their family responsibility as well. Therefore, the major groups of women shall belong to the age group of 27 and 40 years of age. The outcome of the research is also meant for this particular group of women only. It is expected that the recommendations provided by the end of the study shall help the women to maintain a work life balance in their life.
In order to get the response from the proposed group of people, it is expected that both probability and non-probability sampling technique shall be used. Random sampling technique shall be used to target the working women of Australia. Survey method shall be used for reaching out these people. A close ended questionnaire shall be framed and the same would be handed over to the selected participants. It is expected that the respondents would provide their respective opinion that would be helpful to derive a better conclusion of the study. In addition to this, opinions of the experts would also be taken. It is expected that interview of some social activists who work for the welfare of the women shall be taken.
In order to understand the perspective of the working women employees of Sydney, the survey shall be conducted among 50 women employees. Therefore, the sample size is 50 for the survey and quantitative study. For the qualitative study, it is expected that the expert opinion of 3 individuals would be taken to gather knowledge about their point of view on the similar matter.
Measurements of variables:
The variables of the research shall be measured using the nominal scale that will have a range. The outcome of the findings can be converted into numerals and then the same can be measured by the use of certain measurement scales or statistical tools for the analysis of the findings (Taylor et al. 2015).
Sources of data collected:
The research shall be based on both primary and secondary data sources. The secondary data shall be collected from various sources like published journals, newspaper articles and other such material; whereas the primary sources are the data collected from the survey and interview of the major respondents selected for the study (Panneerselvam 2014).
Data analysis techniques:
The data collected from the primary research shall be analyzed by the means of certain statistical tools. For instance, the quantitative data collected from the survey can be converted into numerals and then the same can be compared by the means of statistical tools. For the qualitative research, the outcome can be converted into themes (Flick 2015). The analysis shall be based on the data collected from these sources.
The research proposal has provided the detailed approach on how the research shall be carried on. It has to be said that both secondary and primary research shall be useful in coming up with the right approach of the outcome of the research. If the respondents provide their right response, it is expected that the objectives of the research will be fulfilled.
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