Human Resource Practices and Work-Family Conflict: the Role of Family and Work Status

Kaumudi Misra, Stephanie Seitz, Fnu Bithika


According to role theory, employees experience conflict between their enacted roles in the work versus family domain, often resulting in negative individual and organizational outcomes. Flexible work practices such as flextime, in tandem with other HR practices such as higher pay levels or team-based work, have thus gained popularity for their positive impact on employees’ work-family conflict. Related individual variables such as age, gender or family status have also generated research interest owing to their anticipated effects on work-family conflict. However, extant studies have not tested the simultaneous effects of organizational and individual variables on the relationship between HR practices and employee work-family conflict. Using data from the UK Work-Life Balance Study 2011-12 funded by the Economic and Social Research Council, this study tests the effects of HR practices (compensation, team-based work, and flexible work practices) as well as individual variables (gender, family status and managerial status) on employees’ perceived work-family conflict. Results show that gender, family status and managerial status moderate the relationship between flextime and work-family conflict, shedding new light on the differential impact of flextime on different categories of employees – men versus women; married versus unmarried; and managerial versus non-managerial. Conceptual and practical implications are discussed.

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