Balance Between Flexibility and Stability
The speed of technological developments, the increasing international competition and the faster “expiration” of knowledge create a pressure to change. Additional requirements are created by e. g. the influence of capital markets or international and mixed-age work environments. These factors result in the necessity to increase the adaptation speed of staffing and organizational concepts in modern producing and service enterprises. For work research, especially three lines of development are of paramount interest. These always concern both enterprises and their organization, and employees and their work conditions:
- Increasing rationalization, implementation of new production concepts, decentralization, market-orientation, internationalization and the quicker “expiration” of knowledge lead to profound changes in corporate structures and are accompanied by changed forms and conditions of work.
- The increasing proliferation of new forms of employment “de-standardizes” work. This is accompanied by the decrease of full-time employment. In the course of this development, new, performance-oriented concepts of indirect control e. g. through target agreements, new forms of payment and self-organization are enforced.
- Full-time employment also shows an increasing flexibilization of work schedules, qualification demands, workplaces, payment, professional biographies etc.