Objective: To explore associations between age, organizational justice, selection, optimization with compensation (SOC), and work ability.
Methods: Data for this study were collected in 2011 among 605 employees (mean age = 43.7, SD = 10.7, 86% women) working at a university hospital in Finland.
Results: Age and work ability were negatively associated. Those who experienced high organizational justice and used SOC behaviors at work reported better work ability. The SOC behaviors mediated the relationship between justice and work ability. This meant that high experiences of organizational justice facilitated the use of SOC and thus helped employees maintain their work ability.
Conclusions: Organizational justice can help promote work ability in two ways–-directly by supporting employees' mental resources and indirectly by facilitating the use of individual resource allocation strategies in the form of SOC behaviors.