Purpose: To perform a parsimonious measurement of workplace psychosocial stress in routine occupational health surveillance, this study tests the psychometric properties of a short version of the original Italian effort-reward imbalance (ERI) questionnaire. Methods: 1,803 employees (63 percent women) from 19 service companies in the Italian region of Latium participated in a cross-sectional survey containing the short version of the ERI questionnaire (16 items) and questions related to self-reported health, musculoskeletal complaints and job satisfaction. Exploratory factor analysis, internal consistency of scales and criterion validity were utilized. Results: The internal consistency of scales was satisfactory. Principal component analysis enabled to identify the model’s main factors. Significant associations with health and job satisfaction in the majority of cases support the notion of criterion validity. A high score on the effort-reward ratio was associated with an elevated odds ratio (OR=2.71; 95%CI 1.86-3.95) of musculoskeletal complaints in the upper arm. Conclusions: The short form of the Italian ERI questionnaire provides a psychometrically useful tool for routine occupational health surveillance, although further validation is recommended.
- Effort-reward imbalance - short version
- musculoskeletal disorders
- occupational health surveillance
- principal component analysis
- psychometric properties
- work stress