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Article

Atul Arun Pathak, Dharma Raju Bathini and George M Kandathil

Discusses the suitability of work-from-home policies, especially in information technology companies. Cautions against a one-size-fits-all approach and states that each…

Abstract

Purpose

Discusses the suitability of work-from-home policies, especially in information technology companies. Cautions against a one-size-fits-all approach and states that each company needs to make a decision based on how closely this important human resource (HR) policy aligns with organizational strategy.

Design/methodology/approach

Describes how a work-from-home policy, if correctly designed and implemented by HR managers and if aligned to the organizational strategy, can promote innovation and thereby provide a competitive advantage. Gives illustrations from various organizations to explain the concepts.

Findings

Argues that working from home is not useful for all organizations and in all contexts. HR managers can play a key role in identifying the suitability of work-from-home in their organization’s context. The HR policy needs to be flexible and to change based on the need for innovation, the nature of projects and the role of each individual in the organization.

Practical implications

Advances the view that IT organizations which focus on high-impact radical innovations may benefit from having their employees work in an office. However, each organization, depending on the type of innovation it is aiming for and the nature of projects that it is engaged in, should consider whether work-from-home is a suitable option or not. HR managers should play a larger role in aligning the work-from-home policy to the organizational strategy. They should also be involved more closely in decisions related to the implementation of the policy on the ground.

Social implications

Concedes that extra effort will be needed from human resource management (HRM) in customizing work-from-home-related policies to ensure effective alignment with ever-changing organizational strategies.

Originality/value

Considers the context of work-from-home. Provides insights into how HR managers can design the policy, align it to overall strategy and implement these HRM practices on the ground.

Details

Human Resource Management International Digest, vol. 23 no. 3
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0967-0734

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Book part

Johnna Capitano, Kristie L. McAlpine and Jeffrey H. Greenhaus

A core concept of workhome interface research is boundary permeability – the frequency with which elements from one domain cross, or permeate, the boundary of another…

Abstract

A core concept of workhome interface research is boundary permeability – the frequency with which elements from one domain cross, or permeate, the boundary of another domain. Yet, there remains ambiguity as to what these elements are and how these permeations impact important outcomes such as role satisfaction and role performance. The authors introduce a multidimensional perspective of workhome boundary permeability, identifying five forms of boundary permeation: task, psychological, role referencing, object, and people. Furthermore, based on the notion that employee control over boundary permeability behavior is the key to achieving role satisfaction and role performance, the authors examine how organizations’ HR practices, leadership, and norms impact employee control over boundary permeability in the work and home domains. The authors conclude with an agenda for future research.

Details

Research in Personnel and Human Resources Management
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-78973-852-0

Keywords

Content available
Article

Rocco Palumbo

The disruptions brought by COVID-19 pandemic compelled a large part of public sector employees to remotely work from home. Home-based teleworking ensured the continuity of…

Abstract

Purpose

The disruptions brought by COVID-19 pandemic compelled a large part of public sector employees to remotely work from home. Home-based teleworking ensured the continuity of the provision of public services, reducing disruptions brought by the pandemic. However, little is known about the implications of telecommuting from home on the ability of remote employees to manage the work-life interplay. The article adopts a retrospective approach, investigating data provided by the sixth European Working Conditions Survey (EWCS) to shed lights into this timely topic.

Design/methodology/approach

An empirical, quantitative research design was crafted. On the one hand, the direct effects of telecommuting from home on work-life balance were investigated. On the other hand, work engagement and perceived work-related fatigue were included in the empirical analysis as mediating variables which intervene in the relationship between telecommuting from home and work-life balance.

Findings

Home-based telecommuting negatively affected the work-life balance of public servants. Employees who remotely worked from home suffered from increased work-to-life and life-to-work conflicts. Telecommuting from home triggered greater work-related fatigue, which worsened the perceived work-life balance. Work engagement positively mediated the negative effects of working from home on work-life balance.

Practical implications

Telecommuting from home has side effects on the ability of remote workers to handle the interplay between work-related commitments and daily life activities. This comes from the overlapping between private life and work, which leads to greater contamination of personal concerns and work duties. Work engagement lessens the perceptions of work-life unbalance. The increased work-related fatigue triggered by remote working may produce a physical and emotional exhaustion of home-based teleworkers.

Originality/value

The article investigates the side effects of remotely working from home on work-life balance, stressing the mediating role of work engagement and work-related fatigue.

Details

International Journal of Public Sector Management, vol. 33 no. 6/7
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0951-3558

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Article

Mike Brocklehurst

Post‐industrial predictions of a rapid growth in new technologyhomeworking have gained widespread currency to become part of theconventional wisdom. However the evidence…

Abstract

Post‐industrial predictions of a rapid growth in new technology homeworking have gained widespread currency to become part of the conventional wisdom. However the evidence, including primary research material, suggests that the claims for new technology homeworking, both regarding its extent and its alleged benefits, have been considerably overestimated. In particular, new technology homeworking by itself does not appear to open up opportunities for women to improve their position in the labour market; the demographic changes predicted for the 1990s may provide a better bet. Nevertheless, there is a danger in assuming that all firms apply the same strategy when employing homeworkers; at least three different variations can be identified and this has important implications for personnel managers. The overestimation of new technology homeworking stands in stark contrast to traditional homeworking where the extent has been considerably underestimated. This marginalisation of traditional homeworking stems in large part from the distortion caused by the conceptual split between private and public realms. The failure to find evidence to support the growth of new technology homeworking leads to a consideration of how the arguments may better be considered as rhetoric designed to advance a certain set of ideas – in particular that set associated with “privatisation” as a political ideology.

Details

Personnel Review, vol. 18 no. 2
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0048-3486

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Article

Jessica Simon and Megan McDonald Way

– This paper aims to explore gender differences in terms of self-employment for US Millennials, relating them to working from home as well as other factors.

Abstract

Purpose

This paper aims to explore gender differences in terms of self-employment for US Millennials, relating them to working from home as well as other factors.

Design/methodology/approach

The authors use a population-based survey, the National Longitudinal Survey of Youth 1997, which allows to compare home-based vs non-home-based self-employed women and men on a wide variety of characteristics. Descriptive analyses reveal the unconditional relationships between the covariates of interest, and the authors use ordinary least squares regression to reveal the conditional correlations between working from home and earnings for both women and men.

Findings

The authors find that working from home is highly negatively correlated with earnings for women, but not for men, and that working from home may trump the other characteristics typically associated with lower earnings.

Research limitations/implications

The regression subsample is relatively small (n = 245), leading to omitted variable bias in the regression. The “working-from-home” variable is potentially endogenous. The small sample size does not allow the authors to use detailed information on the self-employment industry. Future research should focus on finding larger samples and a way to instrument for working from home.

Social implications

Work/life trends and communications technology have made working from home more prevalent (Mateyka et al., 2012). It is important for researchers and policymakers to understand the gendered implications of basing a business at home.

Originality/value

The study is the first to use population-based data to focus specifically on gender gaps in earnings of self-employed Millennials in relation to working from home.

Details

Gender in Management: An International Journal, vol. 30 no. 3
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1754-2413

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Article

Susanne Tietze and Gill Musson

This paper seeks to show how the shift of paid work from traditional locations into the home environment raises serious questions of identity for managers who have started…

Abstract

Purpose

This paper seeks to show how the shift of paid work from traditional locations into the home environment raises serious questions of identity for managers who have started to work from home and who have to “cope with” the sometimes conflicting demands imposed by different socio‐cultural spheres.

Design/methodology/approach

Based on an empirical study of working from home, three case studies are presented, which articulate and summarise different modes of engagement with both paid and domestic work and respective identity issues.

Findings

Adding to the extant literature on working from home, the findings indicate that the success or failure of working from home is intrinsically tied into issues related to homeworkers” identity.

Research limitations/implications

The empirical data are taken from a period when homeworkers had to “learn” how to cope with being both “at home and at work”. Further empirical enquiry might focus on longitudinal aspects of the relationship between working from home and identity.

Practical implications

With regard to working from home policies it is advisable to take into account questions of identity, rather than applying exclusively task‐based or technical aspects when considering the organisational benefits of this form of spatial and temporal flexibility.

Originality/value

In conceptualising working from home from an identity perspective, new insights have been gained into the reasons why this mode of work sometimes fails to deliver on its promises, yet proves outstandingly successful on other occasions.

Details

Journal of Management Development, vol. 29 no. 2
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0262-1711

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Article

Rocco Palumbo, Rosalba Manna and Mauro Cavallone

Telecommuting from home is back up on the agenda as a result of the unforeseen challenges brought by COVID-19. Working from home permits to avoid disruption in the…

Abstract

Purpose

Telecommuting from home is back up on the agenda as a result of the unforeseen challenges brought by COVID-19. Working from home permits to avoid disruption in the ordinary functioning of educational institutions triggered by social distancing. However, home-based telecommuting may have some side effects on employees, especially in terms of work-life balance. Soft Total Quality Management (TQM) initiatives are needed to address these side effects. The article intends to shed light on these issues, providing some food for thought to scholars and practitioners.

Design/methodology/approach

Secondary data about the working conditions of 2,046 people employed in the education sector across Europe were investigated. A serial mediation analysis was designed to examine the direct and indirect implications of working from home on work-life balance.

Findings

The study suggests that home-based telecommuting may trigger work-to-life and life-to-work conflicts, due to the blurring of boundaries between work and everyday life. Soft tools, such as organizational meaningfulness (OM) and work-related well-being (WB), mediate the relationship between working from home (HW) and work-life conflicts (WLC), lessening the negative implications of working from home on work-life balance.

Practical implications

The design and the implementation of home-based telecommuting arrangements should include a special concern for soft TQM practices. Among others, OM and WB are likely to minimize the disruption of remote employees' jobs and interpersonal relationships. Failure to do so impairs the ability of home-based employees to make sense out of their working arrangements and to achieve a sustainable work-life balance.

Originality/value

This is one of the first attempts to illuminate the side effects of home-based telecommuting and to investigate the role of soft TQM in addressing these side effects.

Details

The TQM Journal, vol. ahead-of-print no. ahead-of-print
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1754-2731

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Article

Lutz Bellmann and Olaf Hübler

It is analyzed whether working from home improves or impairs the job satisfaction and the work–life balance and under which conditions.

Abstract

Purpose

It is analyzed whether working from home improves or impairs the job satisfaction and the work–life balance and under which conditions.

Design/methodology/approach

Blocks of influences on job satisfaction and work–life balance – personal traits, job characteristics, skills and employment properties – are estimated separately and in combination. To select the variables, the least angle regression is applied. The entropy balancing approach is used to determine causal effects. The study investigates whether imbalances are determined by private or job influences, whether firm-specific regulations and the selected control group affect the results and whether it only takes place during leisure time.

Findings

No clear effects of remote work on job satisfaction are revealed, but the impact on work–life balance is generally negative. If the imbalance is conditioned by private interests, this is not corroborated in contrast to job conditioned features. Employees working from home are happier than those who want to work at home, job satisfaction is higher and work–life balance is not worse under a strict contractual agreement than under a nonbinding commitment.

Originality/value

A wide range of personality traits, skills, employment properties and job characteristics are incorporated as determinants. The problem of causality is investigated. It is analyzed whether the use of alternative control and treatment groups leads to different results. The empirical investigation is based on new German data with three waves.

Details

International Journal of Manpower, vol. ahead-of-print no. ahead-of-print
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0143-7720

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Article

Ahmad Timsal and Mustabsar Awais

The primary purpose of this paper is to highlight the pros and cons associated with the work from home policies and how these policies differ across countries and…

Abstract

Purpose

The primary purpose of this paper is to highlight the pros and cons associated with the work from home policies and how these policies differ across countries and cultures. The main question to be answered is that why a perk or benefit is now being considered as an ethical issue.

Design/methodology/approach

Opinions of practitioners and examples of some leading controversial work from home policies have been discussed in detail. Examples from the developed countries have been compared with those of less developed countries, to present a cross country analysis.

Findings

Culture has a significant impact on the flexible work arrangement policies. Although many companies endorse some degree of flexibility for working mothers or parents in general, working from home as a universal policy is still debatable. The decision to offer this facility to employees majorly depends upon the geographic location of that organization.

Originality/value

All the discussions and views expressed solely belong to the authors. This paper can be extended by adding some empirical evidences from the companies who actually offer this facility to their employees.

Details

Human Resource Management International Digest, vol. 24 no. 7
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0967-0734

Keywords

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Article

Timothy P. Munyon, Denise M. Breaux, Laci M. Rogers, Pamela L. Perrewé and Wayne A. Hochwarter

Building on reciprocity and crossover theory, this paper aims to examine how mood crossover from one partner in a relational dyad influences the likelihood of reciprocal…

Abstract

Purpose

Building on reciprocity and crossover theory, this paper aims to examine how mood crossover from one partner in a relational dyad influences the likelihood of reciprocal mood crossover from the other partner.

Design/methodology/approach

Using a survey sample of 180 dual‐career married couples, the paper explores this phenomenon for both positive and negative mood crossover from husbands to wives and wives to husbands.

Findings

The data supported the paper's four hypotheses. Mood crossover was found to operate in a similar fashion for both husbands and wives after controlling for negative and positive affectivity, work and home demands, work autonomy, and support from the organization, non‐work friends, and spouse. Specifically, when wives (husbands) reported positive (negative) mood crossover from their husbands (wives), their husbands (wives) also reported positive (negative) mood crossover from them.

Research implications/limitations

The findings suggest positive and negative mood crossover is reciprocated among individuals in a dual‐career marriage context. This implies that the effects of positive and negative crossover may be magnified through relational interactions at home. However, the design of this study is not sufficient to determine the causality of this relationship.

Practical implications

The findings suggest that the positive and negative work experiences of one partner in a relationship affect the well being and moods of their partner at home. Consequently, organizations may consider wellness or positive reinforcement programs to encourage positive crossover between the domains of work and home.

Originality/value

This study examines how individuals in a dual‐partner reciprocate the negative and positive crossover of moods of their partner from work to home.

Details

Career Development International, vol. 14 no. 5
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1362-0436

Keywords

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