Email Load, Workload Stress And Desired Email Load

Stich, Jeff and Tarafdar, Monideepa and Stacey, Patrick Keith and Cooper, Cary Lynn (2019) Email Load, Workload Stress And Desired Email Load. Information Technology and People, 32 (2). pp. 430-452. ISSN 0261-1732

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Purpose: Using e-mail is a time-consuming activity that can increase workload stress. The purpose of this paper is to investigate the relationship between the individual’s e-mail load, workload stress and desired e-mail load, drawing from the cybernetic theory of stress. Design/methodology/approach: Based on prior theory, the authors first hypothesized relationships among e-mail load, workplace stress and desired e-mail load. The authors then tested these relationships on a sample of 504 full-time workers in the USA, using survey data and covariance-based structural equation modeling techniques. Findings: The authors find that higher e-mail load is associated with higher workload stress; higher workload stress is associated with lower desired e-mail load; lower desired e-mail load is associated with lower e-mail load; and higher workload stress is associated with higher psychological strain, higher negative emotions and lower organizational commitment. Originality/value: The study provides a novel understanding of workload stress due to e-mail load, through the lens of cybernetic theory. It contributes to the e-mail overload and technostress literatures by conceptualizing desired e-mail load as a potential outcome of workplace stress and as a regulator for e-mail load. For practitioners, the study highlights the importance of managing employees’ e-mail load to prevent the negative effects of workplace stress and associated strains.

Item Type:
Journal Article
Journal or Publication Title:
Information Technology and People
?? technologystructural equation modellinghypothesis testingcomputer-mediated communication (cmc) ??
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Deposited On:
12 Jun 2018 15:14
Last Modified:
15 Jul 2024 17:56