Organizational-level interventions in small and medium-sized enterprises: Enabling and inhibiting factors in the PoWRS program

Christine Ipsen, Liv Gish, Signe Poulsen

    Research output: Contribution to journalJournal articleResearchpeer-review

    960 Downloads (Pure)


    Work-related stress in small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) is an increasing problem. However, knowledge regarding organizational-level interventions in SMEs is limited, and SMEs often lack professional facilitator resources to assist in change processes. An intervention program developed for large corporations, the PoWRS (Prevention of Work-Related Stress) program, has been modified to fit the conditions in SMEs, i.e., appointing employees as in-house facilitators. The aim of this paper is to examine the enablers and inhibiting factors of the PoWRS program when applied in four Danish SMEs. Three out of four of the case companies succeeded in implementing the program. The enablers and inhibiting factors related to three themes: persons and roles, program components, and organizational context. Findings show that the primary enabling factors were the in-house employee facilitators and the intervention being a collective process involving employees and managers. The dominant inhibiting factors were a strong focus on daily operations and lack of time for the intervention. The study shows that although SMEs experience challenges, existing unarticulated in-house resources can be beneficial in organizational change processes.
    © 2014 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.
    Original languageEnglish
    JournalSafety Science
    Issue numberPart C
    Pages (from-to)264–274
    Publication statusPublished - 2015


    • Organizational-level interventions
    • SMEs
    • Organizational change
    • In-house facilitator
    • Case study


    Dive into the research topics of 'Organizational-level interventions in small and medium-sized enterprises: Enabling and inhibiting factors in the PoWRS program'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

    Cite this