اجتناب از کاهش در کار مجازی : دورکاری و تاثیر مداخله گر خستگی کار بر تعهد و مقاصد گردش مالی
|کد مقاله||سال انتشار||مقاله انگلیسی||ترجمه فارسی|
|5136||2006||12 صفحه PDF||12 صفحه WORD|
Publisher : Elsevier - Science Direct (الزویر - ساینس دایرکت)
Journal : Journal of Vocational Behavior, Volume 69, Issue 1, August 2006, Pages 176–187
Despite the tremendous growth of telework and other forms of virtual work, little is known about its impact on organizational commitment and turnover intentions, nor the mechanisms through which telework operates. Drawing upon the conservation of resources model as the theoretical framework, I posit telework’s impact is the result of resource stockpiling and flexibility as teleworkers are able to yield work and personal benefits and protect themselves from resource depletion in the office. Using a sample of 393 professional-level teleworkers in one organization, I therefore investigate the intervening role of work exhaustion in determining commitment and turnover intentions. Results indicate that telework is positively related to commitment and negatively related to turnover intentions, such that a higher degree of teleworking is associated with more commitment to the organization and weakened turnover intentions. Moreover, work exhaustion is found to mediate the relationships between teleworking and both commitment and turnover intentions.
The ability to work ‘virtually’ away from the office has become a ubiquitous new work mode that promises to yield important benefits for employees and the organization. Teleworking, as a form of virtual work, can involve working in multiple satellite offices or other remote locations away from the company office, though most commonly teleworkers allocate their work time between an office and home (Bailey & Kurland, 2002). With at least 37% of companies offering telework arrangements, increasing at 11% per year (SHRM, 2001), teleworking is becoming a highly popular way for professionals to ease ever-increasing work demands yet still fulfill personal and family needs (Rau and Hyland, 2002 and Stephens and Szajna, 1998). Moreover, the widespread assumption that employees who telework are more committed to the organization and less likely to leave it often provides the rationale for organizations implementing telework programs (Guimaraes & Dallow, 1999). To date, however, researchers understand little about this work arrangement, particularly its impact on fundamental outcomes such as organizational commitment and turnover intentions (Bailey and Kurland, 2002 and Pinsonneault and Boisvert, 2001). A growing body of research, although focusing exclusively on traditional work modes rather than telework, has recently investigated work exhaustion as a possible antecedent to commitment and turnover intentions (Moore, 2000a and Moore, 2000b). Exhaustion research suggests that individuals are more vulnerable if exposed to continuous face-to-face contact with co-workers and others in their work (Cordes and Dougherty, 1993 and Leiter and Maslach, 1988). Since teleworking involves separation from others and greater discretion over when and how to interact via electronic media (Wiesenfeld, Raghuram, & Garud, 1999), it is likely to affect the nature and intensity of interactions and off-set exhaustion emanating from continuous face-to-face contact. Moreover, by avoiding a commute, telework aids the acquisition of additional time to spend fulfilling family and work demands (Guimaraes & Dallow, 1999), thereby conserving emotional and mental energy. Work exhaustion may therefore represent an important explanatory variable to help understand the impact of telework on work outcomes, and shed insights to fill the void in current literature (e.g., Bailey and Kurland, 2002 and Feldman and Gainey, 1997). In this study, I therefore investigate the link between telework and organizational commitment and turnover intentions, and focus on how work exhaustion altered by teleworking acts as an intervening factor. Because teleworkers vary in the degree to which they work away from the office (Baruch, 2001 and Cummings, 2005), and since researchers have generally only compared teleworkers to non-teleworkers (e.g., Bailey and Kurland, 2002 and Igbaria and Guimaraes, 1999), I reason that changes in commitment and turnover and the intervening impact of work exhaustion are the result of the degree to which employees telework. Drawing on the conservation of resources (COR) model of stress (Hobfoll, 1988 and Hobfoll, 1989) and the literature on work exhaustion and burnout (e.g., Cordes and Dougherty, 1993, Moore, 2000a and Moore, 2000b), I suggest that telework’s impact may be the result of resource ‘stockpiling’ and flexibility as teleworkers are able to yield benefits and protect themselves from resource depletion in the office.
نتیجه گیری انگلیسی
In this study, I begin to unravel the impacts of telework by investigating the intervening role of work exhaustion in helping to explain the commitment and turnover intentions of teleworkers. Our results indicate that the degree of telework was found to be positively related to organizational commitment and negatively related to turnover intentions, such that a higher degree of teleworking was associated with more commitment to the organization and weakened turnover intentions. Consistent with expectations, work exhaustion was found to partially mediate the relationship between degree of telework and organizational commitment, and to fully mediate the relationship between telework and turnover intentions. By examining the intervening role of work exhaustion, I help shed insight into the impact of telework on two important yet under researched outcomes of telework (Bailey & Kurland, 2002), and in so doing help fill gaps in the literature on this growing form of virtual work. Perhaps more importantly, by heeding the call of earlier researchers to develop new theoretical perspectives for better understanding telework (e.g., Bailey & Kurland, 2002), a primary goal of this research is to shed insight into how telework impacts important organizational variables through the framework of COR theory (Hobfoll, 1988 and Hobfoll, 1989). The impacts of telework in this study are consistent with COR theory and supports the contention by researchers and practitioners that telework’s physical and psychological distance from the office yields valuable resource benefits. More specifically, COR theory predicts that individuals strive to retain and build resources such as emotional and mental energy as a way to bolster themselves against future resource drains, and our results investigating work exhaustion suggests telework enables more beneficial resource management. By providing an altered work context where emotional and mental intensity of interactions can be better managed (Cordes & Dougherty, 1993), telework enables the accumulation of resources in the form of reduced work exhaustion, and avoids the continuous drain associated with prolonged non-intermittent contact characteristic of traditional day-to-day work activities. Moreover, through the absence of commuting and the flexibility to more efficiently accommodate family needs, telework aids the acquisition of additional time and other valued resources (Hobfoll, 1989). While more research is needed, further refinement of COR theory may shed additional insights into telework’s other impacts. Moreover, in keeping with recent emphasis on work exhaustion (Moore, 2000a and Moore, 2000b), this research suggests that telework and other forms of virtual work may help minimize the emotional and mental depletion often associated with demanding jobs, and adds evidence to the burnout literature (e.g., Cordes & Dougherty, 1993) that the exhaustion component of burnout (e.g., Maslach and Jackson, 1981 and Maslach and Jackson, 1986) may be the core explanatory concept. While such assertions are far from conclusive given our correlational data, future researchers should delve further into the emotional and mental stockpiling enabled by new forms of work such as telework, and determine with greater precision the potential impact on the emotional and physical well-being of workers. Expanding the dimensionality (e.g., Densten, 2001) and granularity of research (e.g., Lee & Ashforth, 1996) in this way may extend theory to accommodate such virtual work modes. Future research might also investigate more specific aspects of an employee’s environmental circumstances and individual personality differences which impact the nature and degree of a teleworker’s resource depletion and stockpiling. For example, it is important to understand if it is the mere absence from the office that drives telework’s benefits, or if the presence of family members at home weakens the buffering of work stressors. Moreover, it may be that individual personality differences such as being highly introverted might effect individual reactions to telework and corresponding resource stockpiling. Additionally, since this sample was predominantly male it would be interesting to see how results vary if there is a greater proportion of women. Although gender is controlled in all analysis and this sample is indicative of the firm’s engineering make-up as well as the more general “professional segment” in the telework population (Bailey & Kurland, 2002, p. 387), I encourage future researchers to pursue balanced samples. Finally, while in this study technology was standardized across participants in the company, researches should investigate how technologies influence telework’s impact. While I believe this research contributes to the literature, I cannot infer causality from cross-sectional data. Moreover, although the relationships supported in this research are well grounded in research literature, the potential for feedback loops could further complicate the findings and longitudinal data is needed. Another limitation involves the possibility of common method variance. Although a typical concern in this type of research, the low to moderate correlations between scales in combination with results from the Harman’s single factor test reduces this potential concern. Moreover, our results are consistent with other research that has concluded that while bias may be present, it may not be a significant impact (Doty & Glick, 1998). Never-the-less, the potential for bias exists and care should be taken when interpreting results. Finally, although the response rate is fairly typical of this type of research and our sample is representative of teleworkers in the company studied, additional testing on other samples is needed to ensure results are truly generalizable. These limitations not withstanding, results from this study are especially noteworthy for managers and professionals seeking to make decisions about these work modalities. This study finds a higher degree of teleworking is associated with greater commitment and increased propensity to stay with the organization, which suggests organizational decision makers should encourage employees to expand this work modality based on employee desires. While such decisions should clearly not be made in a vacuum, our study suggests that the value of telework and other virtual work modalities to retaining valued talent may extend beyond simply addressing individual employee needs and contributes towards overall firm retention goals and milestones. Moreover, results of this study indicate that telework may offer managers an avenue to decrease employee work exhaustion, and in so doing not only increase commitment and decrease turnover, but also perhaps gain additional emotional and mental resources to better achieve work objectives. Through absence of a commute and the accumulation of additional time and saved energy resources, teleworkers gain surpluses which can be allocated to work as well as family needs, decreasing overall stress and bolstering output. In this way by being able to achieve more while expending less, teleworking may serve as a managerial tool to invoke greater efficiency while building stockpiles of employee contentment and good will (Hobfoll, 1989). While these assertions remain tentative given our cross-sectional data, such possible managerial and employee uses of teleworking suggest the critical need for future research into this type of virtual work.