Department of Management

What are the effects of working away from the workplace compared to using technology while being at the workplace? Assessing work context and personal context in a global virtual setting

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Despite strong interest in the effects of working from home and using technology for work communication, exploration of the impact of different types of virtuality has not received much attention. Drawing upon social cognitive theory, we examine the effects of two contextual dimensions of virtual work (workplace mobility and distributed work) and employees’ perceptions of group efficacy (knowledge sharing ability). Furthermore, this study investigates the moderating role of in-group collectivism as a personal contextual factor. Results from a survey of 676 individuals from five Danish multinational organizations showed a negative association between workplace mobility (e.g. working from home) and the perception of work group knowledge utilization. Positive associations, however, were found between distributed work (using technology) and both work group knowledge location and knowledge utilization. Furthermore, findings suggest that for work group members originating from countries considered to have a high level of in-group collectivism, the positive effect of distributed work on perceived work group knowledge utilization was less pronounced. This indicates that both the virtual work context and personal context need to be taken into account when assessing the effect of virtuality on group behavior. We finally discuss working from home compared to using technology at the workplace as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic.
Original languageEnglish
Article number100826
JournalJournal of International Management
Number of pages13
Publication statusPublished - Mar 2021

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