The purpose of the project was to examine changes in requirements posed by work and in the mental stresses upon employees associated with the introduction of a new management strategy (customer relationship management). The impacts upon the employees' health (irritation, psychosomatic complaints) were also recorded.
Discussions with experts, analyses of documents, semi-standardized interviews, standardized survey
The results of the project show that customer relationship management leads to customer-oriented organizational and work structures at the customer interface. These include for example the formation of customer support teams, shared offices in which several employees work, customer-oriented task profiles, procedural instructions for the handling of customer concerns, and market-oriented performance targets. The results of the case study suggest that the stress experienced by employees working at the customer interface can be attributed to the customer-oriented nature of the organizational/work setting. A stressful social climate, high noise levels in the shared office, deadline pressure owing to procedural instructions for the handling of customer inquiries, performance pressure owing to the marketization of customer service, and constant interruptions to work associated with comprehensive customer care are all accompanied by irritation and/or psychosomatic complaints. Software design characterized by complex, customer-oriented processes is likewise associated with irritation and psychosomatic complaints. Aggressive customer behaviour is a further source of psychosomatic complaints among employees working at the customer interface.
-cross sectoral-Type of hazard:
mental stress factorsCatchwords:
mental strain/stressDescription, key words:
The effects of modern management strategies upon employee health