Publications by Author: Kelly, Erin L

Lam J, Fox K, Fan W, Moen P, Kelly EL, Hammer LB, Kossek EE. Manager Characteristics and Employee Job Insecurity around a Merger Announcement: The Role of Status and Crossover. The Sociological Quarterly [Internet]. 2015. Publisher's VersionAbstract

Most existing research theorizes individual factors as predictors of perceived job insecurity. Incorporating contextual and organizational factors at an information technology organization where a merger was announced during data collection, we draw on status expectations and crossover theories to investigate whether managers' characteristics and insecurity shape their employees' job insecurity. We find having an Asian as opposed to a White manager is associated with lower job insecurity, whereas managers' own insecurity positively predicts employees' insecurity. Also contingent on the organizational climate, managers' own tenure buffers, and managers' perceived job insecurity magnifies insecurity of employees interviewed after a merger announcement, further specifying status expectations theory by considering context.

Kelly EL, Moen P, Oakes JM, Fan W, Okechukwu CA, Davis KD, Hammer LB, Kossek EE, King RB, Hanson GC, et al. Changing Work and Work-Family Conflict: Evidence from the Work, Family, and Health Network. American Sociological Review [Internet]. 2014;79 (3) :485-516. Publisher's VersionAbstract

Schedule control and supervisor support for family and personal life may help employees manage the work-family interface. Existing data and research designs, however, have made it difficult to conclusively identify the effects of these work resources. This analysis utilizes a group-randomized trial in which some units in an information technology workplace were randomly assigned to participate in an initiative, called STAR, that targeted work practices, interactions, and expectations by (1) training supervisors on the value of demonstrating support for employees’ personal lives and (2) prompting employees to reconsider when and where they work. We find statistically significant, although modest, improvements in employees’ work-family conflict and family time adequacy, and larger changes in schedule control and supervisor support for family and personal life. We find no evidence that this intervention increased work hours or perceived job demands, as might have happened with increased permeability of work across time and space. Subgroup analyses suggest the intervention brought greater benefits to employees more vulnerable to work-family conflict. This study uses a rigorous design to investigate deliberate organizational changes and their effects on work resources and the work-family interface, advancing our understanding of the impact of social structures on individual lives.

Kossek EE, Hammer LB, Kelly EL, Moen P. Designing Work, Family & Health Organizational Change Initiatives. Organizational Dynamics [Internet]. 2014;43 (1) :53-63. Publisher's VersionAbstract

In this paper, we describe the development of the most comprehensive work–family organizational change initiative to date in the United States. Our goal is to share an in-depth case study with examples and critical lessons that emerged. We draw on our years of experience working with major employers from two industries representative of today's workforce (health care and IT professionals). Employers and applied researchers can draw on this study and lessons to create, customize, and deliver evidence-based interventions to improve work, family and health.

Perlow LA, Kelly EL. Toward a Model of Work Redesign for Better Work and Better Life. Work and Occupations [Internet]. 2014;41 :111-134. Publisher's VersionAbstract

Flexible work accommodations provided by employers purport to help individuals struggling to manage work and family demands. The underlying model for change is accommodation—helping individuals accommodate their work demands with no changes in the structure of work or cultural expectations of ideal workers. The purpose of this article is to derive a Work Redesign Model and compare it with the Accommodation Model. This article centers around two change initiatives—Predictability, Teaming and Open Communication and Results Only Work Environment—that alter the structure and culture of work in ways that enable better work and better lives.

Hill R, Tranby E, Kelly EL, Moen P. Relieving the Time Squeeze? Effects of a White-Collar Workplace Change on Parents. Journal of Marriage and Family [Internet]. 2013;75 (4) :1014–1029. Publisher's VersionAbstract

Employed parents perceive a time squeeze even as trends from the 1960s show they are spending more time with their children. Work conditions (e.g., hours and schedule control) would seem to affect both parents' time with children and perceived time squeeze, but most studies rely on cross-sectional data that do not establish causality. The authors examined the effects of the introduction of a workplace flexibility initiative (Results Only Work Environment [ROWE]) on changes in mothers' and fathers' perceptions of the adequacy of their time with children and actual time spent with children (N = 225). Baseline data show the importance of work conditions for parents' sense of perceived time adequacy. Panel data show that mothers (but not fathers) in ROWE report increased schedule control and improved time adequacy, but no change in actual time spent with children, except that ROWE increases evening meals with children for mothers sharing few meals at baseline.

Moen P, Lam J, Ammons SK, Kelly EL. Time Work by Overworked Professionals: Strategies in Response to the Stress of Higher Status. Work Occup. 2013;40 (2) :79-114.Abstract

How are professionals responding to the time strains brought on by the stress of their higher status jobs? Qualitative data from professionals reveal (a) general acceptance of the emerging temporal organization of professional work, including rising time demands and blurred boundaries around work/ nonwork times and places, and (b) time work as strategic responses to work intensification, overloads, and boundarylessness. We detected four time-work strategies: prioritizing time, scaling back obligations, blocking out time, and time shifting of obligations. These strategies are often more work-friendly than family-friendly, but "blocking out time" and "time shifting" suggest promising avenues for work-time policy and practice.

Moen P, Kelly EL, Lam J. Healthy work revisited: do changes in time strain predict well-being?. J Occup Health Psychol. 2013;18 (2) :157-72.Abstract
Building on Karasek and Theorell (R. Karasek & T. Theorell, 1990, Healthy work: Stress, productivity, and the reconstruction of working life, New York, NY: Basic Books), we theorized and tested the relationship between time strain (work-time demands and control) and seven self-reported health outcomes. We drew on survey data from 550 employees fielded before and 6 months after the implementation of an organizational intervention, the results only work environment (ROWE) in a white-collar organization. Cross-sectional (wave 1) models showed psychological time demands and time control measures were related to health outcomes in expected directions. The ROWE intervention did not predict changes in psychological time demands by wave 2, but did predict increased time control (a sense of time adequacy and schedule control). Statistical models revealed increases in psychological time demands and time adequacy predicted changes in positive (energy, mastery, psychological well-being, self-assessed health) and negative (emotional exhaustion, somatic symptoms, psychological distress) outcomes in expected directions, net of job and home demands and covariates. This study demonstrates the value of including time strain in investigations of the health effects of job conditions. Results encourage longitudinal models of change in psychological time demands as well as time control, along with the development and testing of interventions aimed at reducing time strain in different populations of workers.
Moen P, Fan W, Kelly EL. Team-level flexibility, work-home spillover, and health behavior. Soc Sci Med. 2013;84 :69-79.Abstract
Drawing on two waves of survey data conducted six months apart in 2006, this study examined the impacts of a team-level flexibility initiative (ROWE--results only work environment) on changes in the work-home spillover and health behavior of employees at the Midwest headquarters of a large U.S. corporation. Using cluster analysis, we identified three distinct baseline spillover constellations: employees with high negative spillover, high positive spillover, and low overall spillover. Within-team spillover measures were highly intercorrelated, suggesting that work teams as well as individuals have identifiable patterns of spillover. Multilevel analyses showed ROWE reduced individual- and team-level negative work-home spillover but not positive work-home spillover or spillover from home-to-work. ROWE also promoted employees' health behaviors: increasing the odds of quitting smoking, decreasing smoking frequency, and promoting perceptions of adequate time for healthy meals. Trends suggest that ROWE also decreased the odds of excessive drinking and improved sleep adequacy and exercise frequency. Some health behavior effects were mediated via reduced individual-level negative work-home spillover (exercise frequency, adequate time for sleep) and reduced team-level negative work-home spillover (smoking frequency, exercise frequency, and adequate time for sleep). While we found no moderating effects of gender, ROWE especially improved the exercise frequency of singles and reduced the smoking frequency of employees with low overall spillover at baseline.
Bray JW, Kelly EL, Hammer LB, Almeida DM, Dearing JW, King RB, Buxton OM. An integrative, multilevel, and transdisciplinary research approach to challenges of work, family, and health. RTI Press. 2013;March.
Moen P, Kelly EL, Hill R. Does Enhancing Work-Time Control and Flexibility Reduce Turnover? A Naturally Occurring Experiment. Soc Probl. 2011;58 (1) :69-98.Abstract
We investigate the turnover effects of an organizational innovation (ROWE-Results Only Work Environment) aimed at moving away from standard time practices to focus on results rather than time spent at work. To model rates of turnover, we draw on survey data from a sample of employees at a corporate headquarters (N = 775) and institutional records of turnover over eight months following the ROWE implementation. We find the odds of turnover are indeed lower for employees participating in the ROWE initiative, which offers employees greater work-time control and flexibility, and that this is the case regardless of employees' gender, age, or family life stage. ROWE also moderates the turnover effects of organizational tenure and negative home-to-work spillover, physical symptoms, and job insecurity, with those in ROWE who report these situations generally less likely to leave the organization. Additionally, ROWE reduces turnover intentions among those remaining with the corporation. This research moves the "opting-out" argument from one of private troubles to an issue of greater employee work-time control and flexibility by showing that an organizational policy initiative can reduce turnover.
Moen P, Kelly EL, Tranby E, Huang Q. Changing work, changing health: can real work-time flexibility promote health behaviors and well-being?. J Health Soc Behav. 2011;52 (4) :404-29.Abstract
This article investigates a change in the structuring of work time, using a natural experiment to test whether participation in a corporate initiative (Results Only Work Environment; ROWE) predicts corresponding changes in health-related outcomes. Drawing on job strain and stress process models, we theorize greater schedule control and reduced work-family conflict as key mechanisms linking this initiative with health outcomes. Longitudinal survey data from 659 employees at a corporate headquarters shows that ROWE predicts changes in health-related behaviors, including almost an extra hour of sleep on work nights. Increasing employees' schedule control and reducing their work-family conflict are key mechanisms linking the ROWE innovation with changes in employees' health behaviors; they also predict changes in well-being measures, providing indirect links between ROWE and well-being. This study demonstrates that organizational changes in the structuring of time can promote employee wellness, particularly in terms of prevention behaviors.
Kelly EL, Moen P, Tranby E. Changing Workplaces to Reduce Work-Family Conflict: Schedule Control in a White-Collar Organization. Am Sociol Rev. 2011;76 (2) :265-290.Abstract
Work-family conflicts are common and consequential for employees, their families, and work organizations. Can workplaces be changed to reduce work-family conflict? Previous research has not been able to assess whether workplace policies or initiatives succeed in reducing work-family conflict or increasing work-family fit. Using longitudinal data collected from 608 employees of a white-collar organization before and after a workplace initiative was implemented, we investigate whether the initiative affects work-family conflict and fit, whether schedule control mediates these effects, and whether work demands, including long hours, moderate the initiative's effects on work-family outcomes. Analyses clearly demonstrate that the workplace initiative positively affects the work-family interface, primarily by increasing employees' schedule control. This study points to the importance of schedule control for our understanding of job quality and for management policies and practices.
Kelly EL, Ammons SK, Chermack K, Moen P. GENDERED CHALLENGE, GENDERED RESPONSE: Confronting the Ideal Worker Norm in a White-Collar Organization. Gend Soc. 2010;24 (3) :281-303.Abstract
This article integrates research on gendered organizations and the work-family interface to investigate an innovative workplace initiative, the Results-Only Work Environment (ROWE), implemented in the corporate headquarters of Best Buy, Inc. While flexible work policies common in other organizations "accommodate" individuals, this initiative attempts a broader and deeper critique of the organizational culture. We address two research questions: How does this initiative attempt to change the masculinized ideal worker norm? And what do women's and men's responses reveal about the persistent ways that gender structures work and family life? Data demonstrate the ideal worker norm is pervasive and powerful, even as employees begin critically examining expectations regarding work time that have historically privileged men. Employees' responses to ROWE are also gendered. Women (especially mothers) are more enthusiastic, while men are more cautious. Ambivalence about and resistance to change is expressed in different ways depending on gender and occupational status.
Moen P, Kelly EL, Chermack K. Learning from a Natural Experiment: Studying a Corporate Work-Time Policy Initiative. In: Work-life Policies that Make a Real Difference for Individuals, Families, and Organizations. Washington, DC: Urban Institute Press ; 2009. pp. 97-131.
Moen P, Kelly EL. Working Families under Stress: Socially Toxic Job Time Cages and Convoys. In: Handbook of Families and Work: Interdisciplinary Perspectives. Lanham: University Press of America ; 2009. pp. 31-61.
Moen P, Kelly EL, Magennis R. Gender Strategies: Socialization, Allocation, and Strategic Selection Processes Shaping the Gendered Adult Course. In: Handbook of Research on Adult Development and Learning. Routledge Taylor and Francis Group ; 2008. pp. 378-411. Publisher's Version
Moen P, Kelly EL, Huang R. Fit inside the work-family black box: An ecology of the life course, cycles of control reframing. Journal of Occupational and Organizational Psychology [Internet]. 2008;81 (3) :411–433. Publisher's VersionAbstract

Scholars have not fully theorized the multifaceted, interdependent dimensions within the work-family ‘black box’. Taking an ecology of the life course approach, we theorize common work-family and adequacy constructs as capturing different components of employees' cognitive appraisals of fit between their demands and resources at the interface between home and work. Employees' appraisals of their work-family linkages and of their relative resource adequacy are not made independently but, rather, co-occur as identifiable constellations of fit. The life course approach hypothesizes that shifts in objective demands/resources at work and at home over the life course result in employees experiencing cycles of control, that is, corresponding shifts in their cognitive assessments of fit. We further theorize patterned appraisals of fit are key mediators between objective work-family conditions and employees' health, well-being and strategic adaptations. As a case example, we examine whether employees' assessments on 10 dimensions cluster together as patterned fit constellations, using data from a middle-class sample of 753 employees working at Best Buy's corporate headquarters. We find no single linear construct of fit that captures the complexity within the work-family black box. Instead, respondents experience six distinctive constellations of fit: one optimal; two poor; and three moderate fit constellations.

Kelly EL, Kossek EE, Hammer LB, Durham M, Bray JW, Chermack K, Murphy LA, Kaskubar D. Getting There from Here: Research on the Effects of Work-Family Initiatives on Work-Family Conflict and Business Outcomes. Acad Manag Ann. 2008;2 :305-349.Abstract
Many employing organizations have adopted work-family policies, programs, and benefits. Yet managers in employing organizations simply do not know what organizational initiatives actually reduce work-family conflict and how these changes are likely to impact employees and the organization. We examine scholarship that addresses two broad questions: first, do work-family initiatives reduce employees' work-family conflict and/or improve work-family enrichment? Second, does reduced work-family conflict improve employees' work outcomes and, especially, business outcomes at the organizational level? We review over 150 peer-reviewed studies from a number of disciplines in order to summarize this rich literature and identify promising avenues for research and conceptualization. We propose a research agenda based on four primary conclusions: the need for more multi-level research, the necessity of an interdisciplinary approach, the benefits of longitudinal studies that employ quasi-experimental or experimental designs and the challenges of translating research into practice in effective ways.
Moen P, Kelly EL, Huang Q. Work, family and life-course fit: Does control over work time matter?. J Vocat Behav [Internet]. 2008;73 (3) :414-425. Publisher's VersionAbstract

This study moves from "work-family" to a multi-dimensional "life-course fit" construct (employees' cognitive assessments of resources, resource deficits, and resource demands), using a combined work-family, demands-control and ecology of the life course framing. It examined (1) impacts of job and home ecological systems on fit dimensions, and (2) whether control over work time predicted and mediated life-course fit outcomes. Using cluster analysis of survey data on a sample of 917 white-collar employees from Best Buy headquarters, we identified four job ecologies (corresponding to the job demands-job control model) and five home ecologies (theorizing an analogous home demands-home control model). Job and home ecologies predicted fit dimensions in an additive, not interactive, fashion. Employees' work-time control predicted every life-course fit dimension and partially mediated effects of job ecologies, organizational tenure, and job category.

Kelly EL, Moen P. Rethinking the ClockWork of Work: Why Schedule Control May Pay Off at Work and at Home. Advances in Developing Human Resources [Internet]. 2007;9 (4) :487-506. Publisher's VersionAbstract

The problem and the solution. Many employees face work—life conflicts and time deficits that negatively affect their health, well-being, effectiveness on the job, and organizational commitment. Many organizations have adopted flexible work arrangements but not all of them increase schedule control, that is, employees' control over when, where, and how much they work. This article describes some limitations of flexible work policies, proposes a conceptual model of how schedule control impacts work—life conflicts, and describes specific ways to increase employees' schedule control, including best practices for implementing common flexible work policies and Best Buy's innovative approach to creating a culture of schedule control.