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Article
Publication date: 25 June 2021

Benedict Ogbemudia Imhanrenialena, Ozioma Happiness Obi-anike, Chikodili Nkiru Okafor and Ruby Nneka Ike

This paper aims to investigate work–life balance and job satisfaction in the emerging virtual work environments among women in patriarchal Nigerian society.

Abstract

Purpose

This paper aims to investigate work–life balance and job satisfaction in the emerging virtual work environments among women in patriarchal Nigerian society.

Design/methodology/approach

Data were collected with structured and semi-structured questionnaire from 316 participants who signed up for online affiliate marketing programs in Nigeria. The data were analysed with descriptive statistics, while the hypotheses were tested with partial least squares structural equation modelling.

Findings

The outcomes indicate insignificant conflict in the interface between remotely working from home and the discharge of family care responsibilities among married Nigerian women. Also, the women derive significant job satisfaction from virtual work settings. Outcomes from the semi-structured interviews indicate that Nigerian women receive more support in indoor household chores than outdoor household chores while performing virtual work duties from home locations with housemaids being the highest source of such support.

Originality/value

This study extends work–life balance literature from the traditional work environments to the emerging virtual work settings in Africa by providing empirical evidence that the emerging virtual work settings do not result in work–family conflict but rather yield significant job satisfaction among Nigerian women.

Details

Gender in Management: An International Journal , vol. ahead-of-print no. ahead-of-print
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1754-2413

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Article
Publication date: 10 December 2018

Anitha Acharya

In this paper, the prior research on virtual teams was reviewed to assess the state of the literature. The purpose of this paper is to determine why individuals prefer…

Abstract

Purpose

In this paper, the prior research on virtual teams was reviewed to assess the state of the literature. The purpose of this paper is to determine why individuals prefer working in virtual teams (also termed liquid workers and part-time workers). Previous researchers have focussed on the benefits that organizations receive if they hire liquid workers, but to date, no research has been conducted to determine the perspective of these liquid workers. The various definitions of virtual teams are discussed and an integrative definition is proposed that suggests all teams may be defined in terms of their extent of virtualness.

Design/methodology approach

A systematic review of the literature on virtual teams was conducted. The data were collected from 12 informants. A thematic analysis was used to analyse the data.

Findings

Six main themes were identified, namely, pliability, opportunities, increased earnings, vigour, family and transportation.

Research limitations/implications

This study was conducted in a three-metropolitan city in India and warrants being extended to rural and international settings to gain additional insights and confirmation of the research findings.

Practical implications

It is suggested that organizations who recruit liquid workers will be in a position for substantial cost savings; this is because organizations usually make payment of liquid workers’ wages on an hourly basis. This will help the organizations to schedule the number of working hours depending on their needs.

Originality/value

The current study is novel as there is a paucity of research in identifying the factors behind working in the virtual community in India. This study presents the first research of its kind to the best knowledge of the author, and the findings will be valuable for companies who are looking for cost savings.

Details

Journal of Global Operations and Strategic Sourcing, vol. 12 no. 2
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 2398-5364

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Article
Publication date: 9 July 2021

Alanah Mitchell

This paper aims to explore key collaboration technology affordances from virtual collaboration and remote work during the time of COVID-19. The purpose of this exploration…

Abstract

Purpose

This paper aims to explore key collaboration technology affordances from virtual collaboration and remote work during the time of COVID-19. The purpose of this exploration is to improve the understanding of technology-supported collaboration in order to achieve individual and organizational success with the adoption, use and implementation of virtual collaboration in a pandemic and post-pandemic world.

Design/methodology/approach

Qualitative data is collected from 55 graduate students during a time of work transition due to COVID-19. This paper distills key collaboration technology affordances identified from participant feedback.

Findings

This paper identifies topics of virtual collaboration success as well as challenges related to organizational transitions during COVID-19. The findings from this work relate to four collaboration technology affordances including: (1) flexibility and productivity, (2) social connectedness and organizational culture, (3) technology support and (4) management and leadership. Additionally, this research provides insight into the complexities of virtual collaboration in these areas while also making recommendations for the post-pandemic future.

Originality/value

This research makes a contribution through the analysis of a unique set of data elaborating on participant experiences during a global pandemic as well as through the exploration of future implications.

Details

Information Technology & People, vol. ahead-of-print no. ahead-of-print
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0959-3845

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Article
Publication date: 23 November 2010

Shailey Minocha and David R. Morse

The purpose of this paper is to report on a study into how a three‐dimensional (3D) virtual world (Second Life) can facilitate socialisation and team working among…

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to report on a study into how a three‐dimensional (3D) virtual world (Second Life) can facilitate socialisation and team working among students working on a team project at a distance. This models the situation in many commercial sectors where work is increasingly being conducted across time zones and between multiple teams. Collaboration in these geographically distributed teams is virtual rather than through face‐to‐face interactions. The paper investigates how a virtual world such as Second Life compares to other collaboration tools such as instant messaging or Skype; and the challenges that students experience in becoming acquainted with and working in Second Life.

Design/methodology/approach

The paper has employed a qualitative research methodology involving data collection through group interviews, epistolary (email) interviews and semi‐structured individual interviews. The data have been analysed by applying the inductive analysis technique.

Findings

The analysis is presented through answers to questions which educators may have about the effectiveness of virtual worlds in supporting collaboration in virtual teams.

Research limitations/implications

The paper highlights the pedagogical role of 3D virtual worlds in supporting communication, team working and community building. The methodology will be of interest to researchers in the area of virtual worlds as there is little guidance in the literature about how to evaluate student experiences of these environments.

Practical implications

The research reported in this paper is timely and significant in view of current business scenarios such as the challenges of a globally distributed work‐place, the need to offer training to develop employees' skills of working in distributed environments and to meet changing market needs. Furthermore, the research will support the development of a coordinated response to the Leitch review of skills in the UK, which identified issues of resource‐intensive travel, global warming and the need for businesses to be seen as “green” for customer attraction and retention.

Originality/value

The paper discusses the role of 3D virtual worlds in supporting student team projects involving students who are geographically dispersed. The sense of visual presence and of place in a 3D world can make socialising in a virtual world, a more “human” experience than in 2D environments such as web sites, e‐mail, wikis and blogs, and even phone or video‐conferencing. The research reported in this paper could enhance uptake of 3D virtual worlds by organisations facing the challenges of facilitating socialisation and knowledge sharing in a distributed workforce.

Details

Interactive Technology and Smart Education, vol. 7 no. 4
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1741-5659

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Article
Publication date: 1 October 2006

Joe Nandhakumar and Richard Baskerville

The purpose of this paper is to report the findings of an in‐depth case study into virtual teamworking practices in a large petro‐chemical company.

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to report the findings of an in‐depth case study into virtual teamworking practices in a large petro‐chemical company.

Design/methodology/approach

By drawing on the case study the paper offers a theoretical conceptualization of the development of commitment and personal trust relationships in a virtual teamworking context.

Findings

The paper argues that the durability of virtual teamworking depends largely on commitment and personal trust relationships, which may gradually dissipate over time without collocated, face‐to‐face social interactions. The virtual teamworking technologies alone may have limited scope in contributing to reproduction and reinforcement of commitment and personal trust relationships.

Research limitations/implications

This research is based on an investigation in one organization that used a set of virtual teamworking technologies, which have been constantly improving in terms of capabilities and usability. In a business context investigated in this paper, the team working was not continuous, and the level and the range of activities varied over time. Future research should seek to explore whether personal and abstract trust can develop through continued online interaction.

Practical implications

Findings indicate that virtual teams should seek to manage expectations of the use of such technologies in their interactions. Human relationships, rather than technologies are therefore important for nurturing both personal and impersonal trust relationships, which is vital for durable virtual teams.

Originality/value

This paper argues that the long‐term virtual teamworking without face‐to‐face social interactions leads to a gradual dissipation of personal trust relationships, and subsequently loss of impersonal trust relations.

Details

Information Technology & People, vol. 19 no. 4
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0959-3845

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Book part
Publication date: 12 July 2011

Luis L. Martins and Marieke C. Schilpzand

Global virtual teams (GVTs) – composed of members in two or more countries who work together primarily using information and communication technologies – are increasingly…

Abstract

Global virtual teams (GVTs) – composed of members in two or more countries who work together primarily using information and communication technologies – are increasingly prevalent in organizations today. There has been a burgeoning of research on this relatively new organizational unit, spanning various academic disciplines. In this chapter, we review and discuss the major developments in this area of research. Based on our review, we identify areas in need of future research, suggest research directions that have the potential to enhance theory development, and provide practical guidelines on managing and working in GVTs.

Details

Research in Personnel and Human Resources Management
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-0-85724-554-0

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Article
Publication date: 10 June 2021

Suman Choudhary and Kirti Mishra

This paper aims to explore the implications of virtual work arrangements on employee knowledge hiding (KH) behaviour and the different strategies of KH used by employees…

Abstract

Purpose

This paper aims to explore the implications of virtual work arrangements on employee knowledge hiding (KH) behaviour and the different strategies of KH used by employees in these arrangements.

Design/methodology/approach

Following a grounded theory approach to understanding KH, 21 semi-structured in-depth interviews were conducted with employees engaged in virtual working setups. The data collected from these informants were then analysed using qualitative methods.

Findings

The study revealed that virtual work arrangements increase employee KH behaviour because of three reasons: ease of hiding, digital burnout and loss of control. Further, the study found that rationalized hiding is the most commonly adopted strategy by employees engaged in virtual work arrangements, while inclinations towards evasive hiding strategy decrease in this arrangement.

Originality/value

This is the first study in knowledge management literature that seeks to explain KH in the virtual work context.

Details

VINE Journal of Information and Knowledge Management Systems, vol. ahead-of-print no. ahead-of-print
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 2059-5891

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Article
Publication date: 21 April 2012

Yee Au and Abigail Marks

This paper aims to examine the impact of perceived cultural differences in forging identity in virtual teams. Whilst there has been a great deal of research on team…

Abstract

Purpose

This paper aims to examine the impact of perceived cultural differences in forging identity in virtual teams. Whilst there has been a great deal of research on team identification, little has been written about the influences of the virtual context on this process.

Design/methodology/approach

The study reported in this paper was conducted in four companies and seven virtual teams operating across the UK, the USA, Brazil, Singapore, Malaysia and Myanmar.

Findings

The results show that perceived differences in national cultures and the way people work within the cultures has a significant impact on identification in virtual teams. This can lead to unhealthy racial and national stereotypes, which cause conflict between team members. The findings of this study highlight the importance of encouraging team members to value and understand differences and that it is necessary to promote a common goal to foster identification in international virtual teams.

Originality/value

The research provides a critical analysis of virtual working across international boundaries, focusing on employees rather than the technology.

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Article
Publication date: 1 July 2006

Frank M. Horwitz, Desmond Bravington and Ulrik Silvis

The aim of the investigation is to identify enabling and disenabling factors in the development and operation of virtual teams; to evaluate the importance of factors such…

Abstract

Purpose

The aim of the investigation is to identify enabling and disenabling factors in the development and operation of virtual teams; to evaluate the importance of factors such as team development, cross‐cultural variables, leadership, communication and social cohesion as contributors to virtual team effectiveness.

Design/methodology/approach

A total of 115 employees in virtual teams using an on‐line survey contributed a 55 per cent response rate. An on‐line survey combining both quantitative Likert scale and qualitative explanatory questions measured the following variables in addition to those above: team member roles and responsibilities, relationships and trust and team dynamics.

Findings

Results indicated that cross‐cultural communication improvement, managerial and leadership communication, goal and role clarification, and relationship building are most important to virtual team performance.

Research limitations/implications

Further research focusing on particular sectors such as knowledge‐ intensive firms (KIF), including information and telecommunications, and research and development is needed to provide in‐depth insights into virtual team operations. In addition this research highlights potential issues in cross‐cultural composition of virtual teams and the need for further work on appropriate team training, selection factors in comprising virtual teams and communications.

Originality/value

While there is a growing body of research on knowledge and information economy issues and the changing sociology of work for example in the ICT sector and in tele‐remote work and call centres, empirical work specifically on virtual team operation is embryonic. This exploratory research begins to add to the understanding of variables important in the operational effectiveness of virtual teams.

Details

Journal of European Industrial Training, vol. 30 no. 6
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0309-0590

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Article
Publication date: 1 May 2006

Janice Whatley

In the 21st century team working increasingly requires online cooperative skills as well as more traditional skills associated with face to face team working. Virtual team…

Abstract

In the 21st century team working increasingly requires online cooperative skills as well as more traditional skills associated with face to face team working. Virtual team working differs from face to face team working in a number of respects, such as interpreting the alternatives to visual cues, adapting to synchronous communication, developing trust and cohesion and cultural interpretations. However, co‐located student teams working within higher education can only simulate team working as it might be experienced in organisations today. For example, students can learn from their mistakes in a non‐threatening environment, colleagues tend to be established friends and assessing teamwork encourages behaviour such as “free‐riding”. Using a prototyping approach, which involves students and tutors, a system has been designed to support learners engaged in team working. This system helps students to achieve to their full potential and appreciate issues surrounding virtual teamwork. The Guardian Agent system enables teams to allocate project tasks and agree ground rules for the team according to individuals’ preferences. Results from four cycles of its use are presented, together with modifications arising from iterations of testing. The results show that students find the system useful in preparing for team working, and have encouraged further development of the system.

Details

Interactive Technology and Smart Education, vol. 3 no. 2
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1741-5659

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