Design and Appropriation of Computer-supported Self-scheduling Practices in Healthcare Shift Work

Alarith Uhde, Matthias Laschke, Marc Hassenzahl

Shift scheduling impacts healthcare workers' well-being because it sets the frame for their social life and recreational activities. Since it is complex and time-consuming, it has become a target for automation. However, existing systems mostly focus on improving efficiency. The workers' needs and their active participation do not play a pronounced role. Contrasting this trend, we designed a social practice-based, worker-centered, and well-being-oriented self-scheduling system which gives healthcare workers more control during shift planning. In a following nine month appropriation study, we found that workers who were cautious about their social standing in the group or who had a more spontaneous personal lifestyle used our system less often than others. Moreover, we revealed several conflict prevention practices and suggest to shift the focus away from a competitive shift distribution paradigm towards supporting these pro-social practices. We conclude with guidelines to support individual planning practices, self-leadership, and for dealing with conflicts.

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