800 Is there an influence of e-mail regulations on the perceived accessibility of employees?

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IntroductionThe accessibility of employees beyond normal working time has increased considerably through the digitization of work and the use of digital media. The extent to which the resulting flexibility has an impact on the employees‘ health and whether a limitation might be helpful has not yet been clarified.MethodsWithin the framework of a collaborative project (‘RegioKMUnet’), funded by the German Federal Ministry of Education and Research this is examined among 12 small and medium-sized enterprises by means of psychological risk assessment (paper and online surveys) (N [employees]=1802). The focus is on regulations in dealing with e-mails and the possible relation to satisfaction with accessibility in leisure time.ResultsThe evaluation refers to 9 companies so far (n=1067). 28% of the employees stated that they had a regulation in dealing with e-mails on part of the company or personally. Further 37% did not consider it necessary to establish a regulation. 16% had not yet thought about a regulation and 20% had no regulation, as they otherwise feared disadvantages.The accessibility outside working time was reported by 60% as ‘okay’. Within this group, the majority (39%) stated that an e-mail regulation was not necessary, followed by 23% who had a personally imposed regulation.23% considered the accessibility as ‘not okay’, of which 29% stated that an e-mail regulation was not necessary, followed again by 23% with a personal regulation.Overall the group with a regulation in the company was the smallest (6% each in „okay’ and „not okay’).ConclusionAn e-mail regulation does not appear to be the primary influencing factor on the perception of accessibility in leisure time. Further research is needed to examine different digital media and their impact in different industrial sectors.

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