Organizational climate & job involvement among virtual workers in service organizations.

AuthorBirdie, Arvind Kaur

Globalization and technology has revolutionized the workforce and as a result virtual work emerged as an option for upcoming service organizations. The increased use of virtual work has not been accompanied by concomitant research efforts to understand better the socio-psychological contributors to effective virtual work environment. The present paper tries to explore the relationship between perceived organizational climate and job involvement in virtual workers. The sample consisted of 100 virtual workers working in hospitality in India. A co-relational research design was employed. Data were collected through using questionnaire method. The results revealed that perceived organizational climate is not significantly related to job involvement and virtual work has revolutionized behavior within organizations.


As the technology advanced and liberalization came in early nineties in India, it not only changed individual's lifestyle to a large extent but also brought the world closer. As a result, laws, economies, and social movements are forming at the international level. This globalization brought big changes in organizations also. Virtual working is one of them. The major virtue of virtuality is that, if done right, it creates truly agile organizations well equipped to negotiate the crumbling markets of recession (Birkinshaw, 2010)

It is becoming commonplace for organizations to have large numbers of employees who work off-site, telecommuting from a home office, phoning from a car or airplane while travelling on business, or teleconferencing from a hotel room or vacation spot. For multinational companies and organizations who work across the borders and cost cutting is one of the issues with increasing their efficiencies in terms of customer focus, this might prove profitable as in the case of IBM which reports that firm estimates $ 100+million are saved each year. But from the psychologist's perspective whether really these virtual working helps individuals as virtual workforce to balance out their work and life issues and increasing workforce feels satisfied from this kind of working? The downside of electronically connected virtual workplaces is that employees are often expected to work, or to be available, beyond the normal working hours of the organization. Henttlonen and Blomqvist (2005) argued that information technology plays an important role in virtual teams but virtual team work involves significant social redesign.

Virtual teams are the next logical step in the evolution of organizational structures (Lipnack & Stamps, 1999). Townsend and colleagues (1998) defined virtual teams as "groups of geographically and/or organizationally dispersed coworkers that are assembled using a combination of telecommunications and information technologies to accomplish an organizational task". Organizational climate, manifested in a variety of human resource practices, is an important predictor of organizational success. Numerous studies have found positive relationships between positive organizational climates and various measures of organizational success, most notably for metrics such as sales, staff retention, productivity, customer satisfaction, and profitability (Greatworkplace, 2009).

Job Involvement

As organizations and workers continue to adopt virtual work the effect of this organization's climate on job involvement is not explored. When there is no face to face accounting in most times in virtual setting and one is working in home environment or vacation where there is generally so much of distraction, how involved is virtual worker in his job?

Job involvement has been defined as an individual's psychological identification or commitment to his / her job (Kanungo, 1982). It is the degree to 'which one is cognitively preoccupied with, engaged in, and concerned with one's present job (Paullay et al., 1994: 224) Mashayekhi, Sajjadi & Tabrizi (2013) found positive relationship between organizational climate of schools and job involvement of 130 physical teachers at Jiroft city of Iran. If there is serious "financial tsunami", the financial service personnel may lose confidence and this may influence their job involvement, and even, they lose their jobs. It was attempted to understand the critical factors of their job involvement after suffering from the "financial tsunami" attack. Some suggestions were put forward to restore the job involvement of the financial service personnel. The empirical analysis discovered that "perceived organizational support" (POS) was the significant direct effect on job involvement of the employees. Peer relationship positively had an influence on job involvement through perceived organizational support; the direct effect was weaker than the indirect effect. These results demonstrated that peer relationship was conducive to job involvement of the financial service personnel via the five constructs of perceived organizational support. In another result, the direct effect of financial service personnel's guanxi networks on job involvement was weaker than the indirect effect (Hao, Jung & Yenhui, 2009).

Work Alienation

Work alienation and job involvement are correlated with one another (Hirschfeld & Field, 2000).Studies by Rose and colleagues (2002; 2004) have found a very strong link between Organizational Climate and employee reactions such as stress levels, absenteeism and commitment and participation. Griffin et al's (2000) organizational climate model accounts for at least 16% single-day sick leave and 10% separation rate in one organization.

Mishra and Wagh, (2004) conducted a study on public and private sector executives on the job involvement dimension. Two groups of executives differ significantly on mean score. Further they pointed out that reward work culture and environment, challenging job delegation of authority and responsibility were found to be potential factors for job involvement...

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