Ownership type and team climate in elderly care facilities: the moderating effect of stress factors

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This paper is a report of a study examining the association between ownership type and perceived team climate among older people care staff. In addition, we examined whether work stress factors (time pressure, resident-related stress, role conflicts and role ambiguity) mediated or moderated the above mentioned association.


There has been a trend towards contracting out in older people care facilities in Finland and the number of private for-profit firms has increased. Studies suggest that there may be differences in employee well-being and quality of care according to the ownership type of older people care.


Cross-sectional survey data was collected during the autumn of 2007 from 1084 Finnish female older people care staff aged 18–69 years were used. Team Climate Inventory was used to measure team climate. Ownership type was divided into four categories: for-profit sheltered homes, not-for-profit sheltered homes, public sheltered homes and not-for-profit nursing homes. Analyses of covariance were used to examine the associations.


Team climate dimensions participative safety, vision and support for innovation were higher in not-for-profit organizations (both sheltered homes and nursing homes) compared to for-profit sheltered homes and public sheltered homes. Stress factors did not account for these associations but acted as moderators in a way that in terms of task orientation and participative safety employees working in for-profit organizations seemed to be slightly more sensitive to work-related stress than others.


Our results suggest that for-profit organizations and public organizations may have difficulties in maintaining their team climate. In consequence, these organizations should focus more effort on improving their team climate.

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