A workplace intervention improves sleep: results from the randomized controlled Work, Family, and Health Study

  • Ryan Olson
    Affiliations
    Oregon Institute of Occupational Health Sciences, Oregon Health & Science University, 3181 SW Sam Jackson Park Rd, L606, Portland, OR 97239

    Department of Public Health & Preventive Medicine, Oregon Health & Science University, 3181 SW Sam Jackson Park Rd, Mail Code CB 669, Portland, OR 97239

    Department of Psychology, Portland State University, 1721 SW Broadway, Rm 317, Portland, OR 97201
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  • Tori L. Crain
    Affiliations
    Department of Psychology, Portland State University, 1721 SW Broadway, Rm 317, Portland, OR 97201
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  • Todd E. Bodner
    Affiliations
    Department of Psychology, Portland State University, 1721 SW Broadway, Rm 317, Portland, OR 97201
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  • Rosalind King
    Affiliations
    Population Dynamics Branch, Eunice Kennedy Shriver National Institute of Child Health and Human Development, 6100 Executive Blvd., Bethesda, MD 20892-7510
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  • Leslie B. Hammer
    Affiliations
    Department of Psychology, Portland State University, 1721 SW Broadway, Rm 317, Portland, OR 97201
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  • Laura Cousino Klein
    Affiliations
    Department of Biobehavioral Health and Penn State Institute of the Neurosciences, Pennsylvania State University, 221 Biobehavioral Health Bldg, University Park, PA 16802
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  • Leslie Erickson
    Affiliations
    RTI International, 3040 East Cornwallis Road, Research Triangle Park, NC 27709
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  • Phyllis Moen
    Affiliations
    Department of Sociology and Minnesota Population Center, University of Minnesota, 50 Willey Hall, 225–19th Ave South, Minneapolis, MN 55455
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  • Lisa F. Berkman
    Affiliations
    Harvard Center for Population and Development Studies, Harvard University, 9 Bow Street, Cambridge MA 02138

    Department of Social and Behavioral Sciences, Harvard T. H. Chan School of Public Health, 677 Huntington Ave, Kresge Building, Boston, MA 02115
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  • Orfeu M. Buxton
    Correspondence
    Corresponding author at: Pennsylvania State University, 221 Biobehavioral Health Building, University Park, PA 16802. Tel.: +1 617 507 9177.
    Affiliations
    Department of Biobehavioral Health and Penn State Institute of the Neurosciences, Pennsylvania State University, 221 Biobehavioral Health Bldg, University Park, PA 16802

    Harvard Center for Population and Development Studies, Harvard University, 9 Bow Street, Cambridge MA 02138

    Department of Social and Behavioral Sciences, Harvard T. H. Chan School of Public Health, 677 Huntington Ave, Kresge Building, Boston, MA 02115

    Department of Medicine, Brigham and Women's Hospital, 221 Longwood Ave, Boston, MA 02115

    Division of Sleep Medicine, Harvard Medical School, 221 Longwood Ave, Boston, MA 02115
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Published:January 14, 2015DOI:https://doi.org/10.1016/j.sleh.2014.11.003

      Abstract

      Study objectives

      The Work, Family, and Health Network Study tested the hypothesis that a workplace intervention designed to increase family-supportive supervision and employee control over work time improves actigraphic measures of sleep quantity and quality.

      Design

      Cluster-randomized trial.

      Setting

      A global information technology firm.

      Participants

      US employees at an information technology firm.

      Interventions

      Randomly selected clusters of managers and employees participated in a 3-month, social, and organizational change process intended to reduce work-family conflict. The intervention included interactive sessions with facilitated discussions, role playing, and games. Managers completed training in family-supportive supervision.

      Measurements and results

      Primary outcomes of total sleep time (sleep duration) and wake after sleep onset (sleep quality) were collected from week-long actigraphy recordings at baseline and 12 months. Secondary outcomes included self-reported sleep insufficiency and insomnia symptoms. Twelve-month interviews were completed by 701 (93% retention), of whom 595 (85%) completed actigraphy. Restricting analyses to participants with ≥ 3 valid days of actigraphy yielded a sample of 473-474 for intervention effectiveness analyses. Actigraphy-measured sleep duration was 8 min/d greater among intervention employees relative to controls ( P < .05). Sleep insufficiency was reduced among intervention employees ( P = .002). Wake after sleep onset and insomnia symptoms were not different between groups. Path models indicated that increased control over work hours and subsequent reductions in work-family conflict mediated the improvement in sleep sufficiency.

      Conclusions

      The workplace intervention did not overtly address sleep, yet intervention employees slept 8 min/d more and reported greater sleep sufficiency. Interventions should address environmental and psychosocial causes of sleep deficiency, including workplace factors.

      Keywords

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