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Antecedents of intensified job demands: evidence from Austria

Saija Mauno (Faculty of Social Sciences (Psychology), Tampere University, Tampere, Finland) (Department of Psychology, University of Jyväskylä, Jyväskylä, Finland)
Bettina Kubicek (Institute of Psychology, University of Graz, Graz, Austria)
Jaana Minkkinen (Faculty of Social Sciences (Psychology), Tampere University, Tampere, Finland)
Christian Korunka (Faculty of Psychology, University of Vienna, Vienna, Austria)

Employee Relations

ISSN: 0142-5455

Article publication date: 3 April 2019

Issue publication date: 6 June 2019




In order to understand the driving forces behind intensified job demands (IJDs), the purpose of this paper is to examine demographic factors, structural work-related factors, personal and job resources as antecedents of IJDs.


The study is based on cross-sectional (n=4,963) and longitudinal (n=2,055) quantitative data sets of Austrian employees. Data sets were analyzed via regression analyses.


The results showed that IJDs, as assessed through five sub-dimensions: work intensification, intensified job-related, career-related planning and decision-making demands, intensified demands for skills and for knowledge-related learning, remained fairly stable overtime. The most consistent antecedents of IJDs were personal initiative and ICT use at work. Job resources, e.g. variety of tasks and lacking support from supervisor, related to four sub-dimensions of IJDs.

Research limitations/implications

The findings suggest that personal (being initiative) and job resources (task variety) may have negative effects as they associated with IJDs. Moreover, supervisors’ support is crucial to counteract IJDs.

Practical implications

Employers should recognize that certain personal (e.g. personal initiative) and job-related resources (e.g. lacking supervisory support) might implicate higher IJDs, which, in turn, may cause more job strain as IJDs can be conceived as job stressors.


IJDs have received very little research attention because they are new job demands, which however, can be expected to increase in future due to faster technological acceleration in working life. The study has methodological value as longitudinal design was applied.



Mauno, S., Kubicek, B., Minkkinen, J. and Korunka, C. (2019), "Antecedents of intensified job demands: evidence from Austria", Employee Relations, Vol. 41 No. 4, pp. 694-707.



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