BACKGROUND: The aging work force makes sustainable employability (SE) of workers a priority. However, it is unknown to what extent employees use implemented SE measures. OBJECTIVE: To determine the utilization of 1) SE measures offered by employers, 2) employee SE strategies, and 3) to identify barriers and facilitators of SE strategies. METHODS: Survey data were collected among 731 blue collar and 879 white collar workers to determine the utilization of employer SE measures. Focus groups were held with 16 blue collar and 17 white collar workers to identify employee SE strategies and their barriers and facilitators. RESULTS: Utilization of employer SE measures was highest for personal development measures. Strategies applied by blue collar workers included using equipment, suggesting improvements of their working conditions, and seeking promotion to a less physically demanding job. White collar workers named engaging in leisure time physical activity and seeking an adequate work-life balance. Implementation of these strategies was influenced by employee awareness and self-efficacy, the accessibility and costs and benefits of the strategy, management support and company culture. CONCLUSION: Usage of employer SE measures was generally low and recommendations are given for both blue and white collar workers to improve SE strategies.

barrier, implementation, Occupational health and security, physical load, stress,
Department of Public Health

Tonnon, S.C. (Susanne C.), Van Der Veen, R. (Rozan), De Kruif, A.T.C.M. (Anja Th.C.M.), Robroek, S.J.W, Ploeg, H.P, Proper, K.I, & van der Beek, A.J. (2018). Strategies of employees in the construction industry to increase their sustainable employability. Work, 59(2), 249–258. doi:10.3233/WOR-172679