Casualisation Friend or Foe? A Case Study Investigation of two Australian Hospitals

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Lumley, Clare, Stanton, Pauline and Bartram, Timothy (2004) Casualisation Friend or Foe? A Case Study Investigation of two Australian Hospitals. New Zealand Journal of Employment Relations, 29 (2). pp. 33-48. ISSN 1176-4716


This paper seeks to address the limited systematic research concerning the explanations and consequences of the growing casualisation of nursing in Australia. It draws on a case study of two Victorian metropolitan hospitals, a private and public facility. This paper also seeks to improve our understanding of why nurses prefer casual working arrangements. This paper explores the effects of casualisation on permanent and casual nurses, and the workplace. This is achieved through both qualitative and quantitative research methods, exploring attitudes and perceptions of permanent nurses, casual nurses and nurse managers concerning casualisation and its impact on their workloads, occupational stress, work performance and the provision of quality of care. The main findings in this study were that a number of nurses are electing to work casually out of choice rather than necessity. Moreover, hospital managers have to use casual nurse labour as a consequence of an inadequate permanent workforce as opposed to the historical technique of controlling labour supply. It was found that all three groups of informants considered that permanent nurses provided the highest rate of work performance and quality of care. Finally, implications are drawn for government and hospital management.

Item type Article
Official URL
Subjects Historical > Faculty/School/Research Centre/Department > School of Management and Information Systems
Historical > FOR Classification > 1110 Nursing
Keywords ResPubID18652, casual, hospital, nursing, employment, casualisation
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