Experiential Benefits of Interactive Conflict Negotiation Practices in Computer-Supported Shift Planning

Alarith Uhde, Matthias Laschke, Marc Hassenzahl

Session: HCI at Work - Thursday 2022-12-01 09:30-10:30 AEDT
Paper Track
Remote Presentation


Shift planning plays a key role for the health and well-being of healthcare workers. It determines when they work and when they can take time off to recover or engage in social activities. Current computer-support in shift planning is typically designed from a managerial perspective and focuses on process efficiency, with the long-term goal of full automation. This implies automatic resolutions of emotionally charged scheduling conflicts. In the present study, we measured the effects of such a fully automated process on workers' well-being, fairness, and team spirit, and compared them with a more interactive process that directly involves workers in the decision-making. In our experimental online study (n = 94), we found positive effects of the more interactive process on all measures. Our findings indicate that full automation may not be desirable from the worker perspective. We close with concrete suggestions to design more worker-centered, hybrid shift planning systems by optimizing worker control, considering the worker experience, and embedding shift planning in the broader work context.