To read this content please select one of the options below:

Career self-management perceptions reflected in the psychological contract of virtual employees: a qualitative and quantitative analysis

Lee Gazit (Business Administration, Ben-Gurion University of the Negev, Beer-Sheva, Israel)
Nurit Zaidman (Business Administration, Ben-Gurion University of the Negev, Beer-Sheva, Israel)
Dina Van Dijk (Health Systems Management, Ben-Gurion University of the Negev, Beer-Sheva, Israel)

Career Development International

ISSN: 1362-0436

Article publication date: 14 September 2021

Issue publication date: 14 October 2021

1036

Abstract

Purpose

The question of responsibility for career development is critical for virtual employees who work remotely. The purpose of this paper is to (1) compare the perceptions of virtual and on-location employees in the high-tech industry about where responsibility lies for career management, as reflected in their psychological contract (PC) and (2) evaluate the ability of virtual employees to exercise behaviors capable of enhancing their career development.

Design/methodology/approach

A mixed-methods approach was used for this study. Study 1 consisted of semi-structured interviews (N = 40) with virtual and on-location employees working for the same high-tech organization, exploring perceptions responsibility for career self-management as captured by their PCs. Study 2, a quantitative survey of virtual and on-location employees (N = 146) working for various organizations in the high-tech sector, examined perceptions of career self-management through the perceived PC, as well as the perceived ability to exercise behaviors that would enhance career development.

Findings

Both categories of employees assumed that they, together with their direct manager, had responsibility for managing their career development. Nevertheless, virtual employees had lower expectations of support from their managers in this respect (Study 1) and felt that they actually received less support from their managers (Study 2). The results of both studies show, however, that virtuality does not have any significant effect on employees’ self-reported proactive career-influencing behaviors.

Originality/value

The study contributes to existing research by highlighting the perceived joint responsibility for career management and the critical role played by line management in this regard and by showing that virtuality does not have a significant effect on employees’ self-reported proactive career-influencing behaviors.

Keywords

Citation

Gazit, L., Zaidman, N. and Van Dijk, D. (2021), "Career self-management perceptions reflected in the psychological contract of virtual employees: a qualitative and quantitative analysis", Career Development International, Vol. 26 No. 6, pp. 786-805. https://doi.org/10.1108/CDI-12-2020-0334

Publisher

:

Emerald Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2021, Emerald Publishing Limited

Related articles