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Work–life bal ance or work–life alignment? A test of the importance of work-life balance for employee engagement and intention to stay in organisations

  • Louise P Parkes (a1) and Peter H Langford (a1)

In an Australian sample of over 16,000 employees we assessed whether employees are satisfied with their ability to balance work and other life commitments. We tested the hypothesis that work–life balance is important for engaging and retaining employees in the context of other aspects of organisational climate. We also explored how individual and organisational variables were related to work–life balance aiding further development of theory integrating work with other aspects of life. Results showed that of 28 organisational climate factors, work–life balance was least related to employee engagement and intention to stay with an organisation. We discuss implications for how organisations position work–life balance strategies, particularly in relation to social responsibility and wellness, rather than the solution to employee commitment and retention.

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