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Carer Engagement in the Home-Care Provision Industry

Fleming, Orla (2014) Carer Engagement in the Home-Care Provision Industry. Masters thesis, Dublin, National College of Ireland.

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Employee engagement is a concept that can have huge positive bearings on organisational outcomes (Buckingham and Coffman, 1999), specifically in the health industry (Pelzang, 2010; Lee, Lee and Kang 2012). This research will examine the key influencers of engagement for carers in the home-care sector in East Clare.

The home-care sector is going to become an increasingly important one in the years ahead, given Ireland’s ageing population. The industry is beginning to be opened up to tender and is currently unregulated (Home and Community Care Ireland, 2014). However, there appears to be very little Irish research done in this area despite it being of such critical social and economic importance both to the individual being cared for and society as a whole. Therefore, it is worthy of more examination. The impetus for the research arose through the researcher working in a large home care provider in Dublin for one day a week for six months. This prompted a curiosity about how the ad-hoc working hours impacted on carer engagement levels.

The methodology used in this research was structured, face-to-face interviews with five carers which was the most appropriate way to gain a comprehensive insight into the area. The interviews were structured around a questionnaire amended from Tellis-Neyak (2007) and allowed the research to generate the “why” of the responses for better understanding (Saunders, Lewis and Thornhill, 2009).
The research found that the carers interviewed display what appears to be a uniquely high level of engagement, to the extent that the main source of job stress is that they can’t do more for their clients. Pay appears not to be a significant factor in determining engagement levels. There is a very hands-off style of management resulting in a high level of employee discretion. There is little or no formal recognition of the outstanding work that is done by carers on a daily basis.

The findings are of enormous value as the job of a carer is truly unique and needs to be recognised and valued by their employers and society.

Item Type: Thesis (Masters)
Subjects: H Social Sciences > HD Industries. Land use. Labor > Non Profit Organisations. Voluntary Sector. > Carers
Divisions: School of Business > Master of Arts in Human Resource Management
Depositing User: Claire Wallnutt
Date Deposited: 21 Nov 2014 15:27
Last Modified: 21 Nov 2014 15:27

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