The Role of the Work Station: Visibility of Ones Computer Screen to Coworkers Influences Cyberloafing Through Self-Efficacy to Hide Cyberloafing

Kevin L. Askew, John E. Buckner

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

1 Scopus citations

Abstract

The use of the Internet at work for reasons unrelated to work, or cyberloafing, is a potentially harmful behavior for organizations. Past studies have shown cyberloafing is driven in part by characteristics of the work environment (Askew, Vandello, & Coovert, 2012). However, there remains little research on how the work environment influences cyberloafing. Here, we tested hypotheses that work station properties (and electronic monitoring) would influence cyberloafing through self-efficacy to hide cyberloafing among a sample of working adults (N-202). We found evidence that visibility of ones computer screen influences cyberloafing through increased levels of ones self-efficacy to hide cyberloafing. In addition to the main study, we conducted a cross-validation study with a sample of Amazons Mechanical Turk workers. Using multiple data control techniques, we were able to replicate the original results, providing evidence that the effect is robust and not specific to our original sample. The investigation contributes to practice and theory in two important ways. First, this investigation identifies a novel intervention point for decreasing personal computer use at work, that is, the structuring or restructuring of the immediate work station to deter cyberloafing. Second, the results suggest an expansion to one of the major theories of cyberloafing (i.e., theory of planned behavior model of cyberloafing) to include visibility of ones computer screen as a distal antecedent, proximal to self-efficacy to hide.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)267-287
Number of pages21
JournalPsychologist-Manager Journal
Volume20
Issue number4
DOIs
StatePublished - Nov 2017

Keywords

  • Cyberloafing
  • computer screen
  • self-efficacy to hide cyberloafing
  • work environment
  • work station

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