Supporting Shift Workers

Suggestions from medical experts to support employees who work odd hours.

By Steve Bates Nov 1, 2016
  • ​Provide schedules that are as predictable as business needs permit.
  • Limit the number of nights worked consecutively.
  • Avoid scheduling double shifts and overtime when possible.
  • Consider allowing long or frequent breaks, plus flextime and telecommuting.
  • Install work-area lighting that is optimal for night-shift workers.
  • Designate areas and times for employees to nap in the workplace.
  • Provide training for employees to manage their sleep and reduce their fatigue.
  • Educate supervisors on how to identify chronically tired employees and when to intervene.
  • Provide health and wellness programs that are accessible at night and on weekends.
  • Encourage regular physical exams.
  • Develop programs to screen for fitness for duty as well as for sleep apnea and other sleep-related disorders.
  • Offer transportation to and from remote worksites.

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