Growing the Virtual Workplace

Growing the Virtual Workplace

The Integrative Value Proposition for Telework

Alain Verbeke, Robert Schulz, Nathan Greidanus and Laura Hambley

Unique features of the book include an integrative framework for increasing telework adoption; practical tips – specific to each stakeholder – on how best to implement and measure telework; and an analysis of original survey data exploring the virtual workplace adoption decision.

Chapter 2: Telework Impacts: The Employee Perspective

Alain Verbeke, Robert Schulz, Nathan Greidanus and Laura Hambley

Subjects: business and management, organisational behaviour, strategic management


The growth of the virtual workplace will ultimately be dictated by the adoption of telework at the employee level. There are many reasons why employees decide to adopt or not adopt telework. In most cases the employee must decide that the personal benefits of telework outweigh the costs in order to consider this work arrangement (Illegems and Verbeke, 2003). The employee’s personality and life situation will affect the relative weights assigned to these advantages and disadvantages (Illegems and Verbeke, 2003). This chapter describes the positive and negative impacts of telework as identified by researchers and practitioners. These may be grouped into the following five categories, all viewed from the employee’s perspective: impacts on (1) the organization, (2) operations, (3) organizational efficiency, (4) external stakeholders and (5) other aspects of employees’ lives. We will discuss the positive, neutral, and negative impacts in each of these categories in the following sections. Telework impacts are classified as neutral if research findings are mixed (that is, some research has found it to be a positive impact, while other research treats it as a negative impact). It is also important to note that, while we classify telework impacts as positive or negative according to current research, the impacts experienced by one employee may not apply to another, but we have classified these according to what research has generally found for the groups of people studied. IMPACTS ON THE ORGANIZATION As we have claimed with our concept of an integrative...

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