shift work

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shift work

a method of organizing work which enables production or services to be operated beyond normal working hours. Employees'working days are known as shifts and may be timed to commence at varying times of the day or night. Where shifts are of equal lengths it is common for employees to rotate around them, working, say ‘earlies’ one week, ‘lates’ the next.

There are several forms of shift work:

  1. double-day shifts, where there are two shifts of equal length each working day usually 6 a.m. to 2 p.m. and 2 p.m. to 10 p.m.;
  2. three-shift working, where there are three shifts of equal length so that operations can be maintained round the clock either throughout the week including weekends (continuous) or from Monday to Friday (discontinuous). Where there are peaks of activity, a four-shift system can be used to provide some overlap at certain times of the day;
  3. continental shift, where there is a three-shift system but workers change from shift to shift every two or three days rather than each week;
  4. split-shift working, where an employee's working day is cut in two, with a middle period off duty This may be found in industries such as public transport, where demand peaks in the early morning and late afternoon;
  5. permanent night shifts, where a separate group of employees work solely at night, thereby achieving the benefit of an extended working day but without disturbing the working patterns of day employees;
  6. ‘twilight’ shift working, where a separate group of part-time workers (see PART-TIME WORK) take over from the day shift in the late afternoon and work through until mid or late evening. By this method the productive day is extended but some of the costs of shift work are avoided, such as the need to pay a shift premium (see below).

Most shift systems involve a regular pattern of signing-on times but in some cases, for example the railway industry, signing-on times vary from day to day (though they usually broadly correspond to a three-shift working system).

The benefits of shift work to employers include more intensive use of production facilities and, especially in service industries, the capacity to adapt operations to the pattern of demand. Also, some forms of technology, for example in the chemical industry, need to be operated continuously and require some form of shift working. Maintaining productivity in shift work can be problematic, however. People are generally less productive in the small hours of the night, whilst control of performance may be ineffective (witness the occasional media horror stories about night-shift workers getting a good night's sleep alongside their machines). It is recognized that shift work imposes costs on employees, chiefly in the disruption to their social and domestic life. For this reason it is common for some form of shift premium to be paid on top of the hourly pay rate, especially when night work is involved. There is also some evidence that frequent changes to waking hours damage body rhythms and can be harmful to health in the long term.

Collins Dictionary of Business, 3rd ed. © 2002, 2005 C Pass, B Lowes, A Pendleton, L Chadwick, D O’Reilly and M Afferson
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Scheduling already occurs via mobile for many shift workers. Managers often create a schedule and text individual employees to inform them of their shift assignments.
While there is no exact number of second shift workers, it definitely will be smaller than those working during the morning as the "first shift will be (responsible) for dredging and partial hauling transport," Ilao added.
Table 2 shows that overweight and obesity are more common in shift workers than the day workers.
Valeriano Timbang from the Department of Health said night shift workers have high risks of developing cardiovascular diseases.
The research team's work also may have implications for the study of other chronic diseases shift workers are more susceptible to, including chronic kidney disease and breast prostate, and skin cancer.
Additionally in a review conducted in 2010, it was shown that being overweight and obese was more prevalent in shift workers than day workers, also shift work was associated with BMI independent of age or time in shift work and a longer exposure predicts a higher BMI (14).
Night shift workers may also be at increased risk for the development of MetS.
He presented unpublished results from one aspect of the trial: a cross-sectional analysis of 273 nurses divided into one of three groups: 64 diurnal workers (DW), 111 active night shift workers (aNW), and 98 prior night shift workers (pNW).
Long-term night shift workers should have regular physical examinations and cancer screenings.'
Aimed at ferrying revellers and shift workers on journeys 'up to two hours' between the city centre and suburban areas, Simba says they plan to meet council leaders to discuss the project in the new year.
The unemployed and shift workers were also more likely to report mental ill health.
These groups are also more likely to report sleeping <7 hours per day (3): 70% of night shift workers in the transportation and warehousing industry reported less than 7 hours of sleep per night (3), compared with 30% of all adult U.S.