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Job Satisfaction: Insights from Home Support Care Workers in Three Canadian Jurisdictions

  • Dimitra Panagiotoglou (a1), Pamela Fancey (a2), Janice Keefe (a2) and Anne Martin-Matthews (a3)

This mixed-methods study identified the personal and workplace characteristics that drive the job satisfaction of home support workers (HSWs) providing assistance to elderly clients. Data were based on a standardized measure of job satisfaction, along with in-depth qualitative interviews with 176 home support workers from three Canadian provincial jurisdictions (British Columbia, n = 108; Ontario, n = 28; Nova Scotia, n = 40). We anticipated that variability in demographic profiles between the three groups of workers and different job descriptions would be associated with differences in perceived job satisfaction. This was not the case. Results from the qualitative analysis highlight key areas that contributed to job satisfaction. These are job (scheduling, travel, and safety), economic (income security), and organizational (communication, support, and respect) factors. Given these findings, we recommend improvements to workplace communication, increased travel time allowance between clients, and wage parity with equivalent positions in long-term care facilities.

Cette étude, utilisant des méthodes mixtes, a permis de déterminer les caractéristiques personnelles et professionnelles qui déterminent la satisfaction au travail des travailleurs de soutien à domicile (TSD) qui offrent de l’aide aux personnes âgées. Les données étaient fondées sur une mesure normalisée de la satisfaction au travail ainsi que sur des entretiens qualitatifs et approfondis avec 176 travailleurs de soutien à domicile de trois administrations provinciales canadiennes (Colombie-Britannique, n = 108; Ontario, n = 28; Nouvelle-Écosse, n = 40). Nous nous attendions à ce que la variabilité des profils démographiques parmi les trois groupes de travailleurs et des différentes fiches de poste soit associées à des différences dans la perception de satisfaction professionnelle. Ce n’était pas le cas. Les résultats de l’analyse qualitative mettent en lumière les principaux domaines qui ont contribué à la satisfaction au travail. Ces domaines concernent le travail (horaires, voyages d’affaires et sécurité), les questions économiques (sécurité de revenu) ou organisationnelles (communication, soutien et respect). Compte tenu de ces constatations, nous recommandons des améliorations en ce qui concerne la communication au lieu de travail, une plus grande marge de temps de déplacement entre les clients et la parité salariale avec des postes équivalents dans les établissements de soins de longue durée.

Corresponding author
La correspondance et les demandes de tire-à-part doivent être adressées à : / Correspondence and requests for offprints should be sent to: Dimitra Panagiotoglou School of Population and Public Health University of British Columbia 2206 East Mall Vancouver, BC V6T 1Z3 (
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* Funding for the research on which this article is based was provided to the project “Home Care in Canada: Working at the Nexus of the Public and Private Spheres” (A. Martin-Matthews, PI), by the Canadian Institutes of Health Research (Grant IOP-70684). The authors acknowledge the contributions of Gillian Joseph of the University of Guelph Centre for Families, Work & Well-Being in manuscript preparation.
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Canadian Journal on Aging / La Revue canadienne du vieillissement
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  • EISSN: 1710-1107
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