The work experience measurement scale (WEMS): a useful tool in workplace health promotion

Petra Nilsson, Ingemar H. Andersson, Göran Ejlertsson

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

26 Citations (Scopus)


OBJECTIVE: To present validity data for the Work Experience Measurement Scale (WEMS), an instrument measuring multifaceted work experience from a salutogenic health resource perspective as a contrast to the more common pathogenic risk perspective, by exploring WEMS relationship to established measurements that are positively related to health and work. A salutogenic perspective focuses on finding conditions and resources in life, for example at work, that can enhance the individual's health and strength, instead of those causing illness and weakness.

METHOD: This study was carried out in 2009 at a Swedish hospital with a web-based survey (WEMS) to 770 employees. Different occupational groups at the hospital participated. Additional questionnaires used at the same time were the Utrecht Work Engagement Scale (UWES-9), the Salutogenic Health Indicator Scale (SHIS), the General Self-Efficacy scale (GSE), and three questions about self-rated health, general well-being, and quality of life.

RESULTS: Cronbach's Alpha of WEMS sub-indices were in the interval of 0.85—0.96. Convergent validity and discriminant validity of WEMS and its sub-indices were shown to be satisfying by correlations. In addition, WEMS demonstrated the ability to discriminate between groups. WEMS sub-indices discriminated even better between groups than the total index.

CONCLUSION: The WEMS proved to be a workplace health promotion questionnaire that was able to measure experiences of work from a salutogenic perspective. The WEMS has a potential of being a useful tool in workplace health promotion to enhance positive human capabilities and resources to improve work performance.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)379-387
Number of pages8
JournalWorkA journal of Prevention, Assessment and rehabilitation
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - 2013

Swedish Standard Keywords

  • Public Health, Global Health, Social Medicine and Epidemiology (30302)


  • Work experience
  • measurement
  • salutogenic
  • scale
  • workplace health promotion


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