When is work a cause of early retirement and are there any effective organizational measures to combat this? A population-based study of perceived work environment and work-related disorders among employees

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle


Background: The ageing workforce has an impact on public health. The aim of this study was to evaluate work-related disorders, work tasks and measures associated with the possibility of working beyond 65 years of age or not. Method: The data comprised two sample surveys based on the Swedish population: the Survey of National Work-Related Health Disorders, and the National Work Environment Survey. Results: A logistic regression analysis showed that an active systematic work environmental management in the workplace was a statistically significant association with whether individuals could work in their current occupation until 65 years of age (OR 1.7). The final multivariate model stated that whether individuals could work until 65 years was associated with bodily exhaustion after work, frequent feeling of the own work effort being insufficient at the end of the day, experience of the work as restricted and with a lack of freedom, working alone and at risk of unsafe or threatening situations, and generally feeling dissatisfied with the work tasks. Women-dominated workplaces were more highly associated with both male and female employees not being able to work until age 65 (OR 1.6). Conclusion: Deficiencies in the working environment seems to be a threat to the public health. An active systematic work environmental management in the workplace increases the possibility to extend the working life. Tools for managers, like the swAge-model, to easily perform active systematic work environmental controls could therefore be a possible way to decrease the risk of work injury as well as increase the possibility for a sustainable extended working life.


External organisations
  • Kristianstad University
Research areas and keywords

Subject classification (UKÄ) – MANDATORY

  • Occupational Therapy


  • public health, demography, retirement; occupational health; work environment; age management; older worker; age management, swAge; sustainable working life.
Original languageEnglish
Article number716
JournalBMC Public Health
Publication statusPublished - 2020 May 19
Publication categoryResearch