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Abstract and Figures

Organisations increasingly adopt tracking technologies that allow managers to continuously collect highly detailed records of employee, performance, and health. Based on the theory of planned behavior, we aim to identify attitudes, functions of monitoring, and control perceptions which should strengthen or lower employees’ acceptance of these technologies. Our experimental vignette study among 800 respondents in Germany reveals that acceptance is more likely if employees have positive attitudes towards surveillance in general and towards monitoring in private life and if the technologies enhance labour productivity. The tendency to reject the technology increases if it is to be used for monitoring health and performance. The results indicate that these new technologies will not be accepted unconditionally and may be subject to bargaining and conflicts. In the implementation process, human resources departments will have to take account of employee interests and well-being, which in turn may improve acceptance and performance.
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ORIGINAL ARTICLE
Electronic monitoring at work: The role of
attitudes, functions, and perceived control for the
acceptance of tracking technologies
Martin Abraham
1
| Cornelia Niessen
2
| Claus Schnabel
3
|
Kerstin Lorek
1
| Veronika Grimm
4
| Kathrin Möslein
5
|
Matthias Wrede
6
1
School of Business and Economics, Sociology
and Empirical Research Methods, FAU
Erlangen-Nürnberg, Nürnberg, Germany
2
Department of Psychology, Work and
Organizational Psychology, FAU Erlangen-
Nürnberg, Erlangen, Germany
3
School of Business and Economics, Labor
and Regional Economics, FAU Erlangen-
Nürnberg, Nürnberg, Germany
4
School of Business and Economics, Economic
Theory, FAU Erlangen-Nürnberg, Nürnberg,
Germany
5
School of Business and Economics,
Information Systems I, FAU Erlangen-
Nürnberg, Nürnberg, Germany
6
School of Business and Economics,
Economics and Social Policy, FAU Erlangen-
Nürnberg, Nürnberg, Germany
Correspondence
Martin Abraham, School of Business and
Economics, Sociology and Empirical Research
Methods, FAU Erlangen-Nürnberg,
Findelgasse 7, Nürnberg D-90402, Germany.
Email: martin.abraham@fau.de
Abstract
Organisations increasingly adopt tracking technologies that
allow managers to continuously collect highly detailed
records of employee, performance, and health. On the basis
of the theory of planned behaviour, we aim to identify atti-
tudes, functions of monitoring, and control perceptions that
should strengthen or lower employees' acceptance of these
technologies. Our experimental vignette study among
800 respondents in Germany reveals that acceptance is
more likely if employees have positive attitudes towards
surveillance in general and towards monitoring in private
life and if the technologies enhance labour productivity.
The tendency to reject the technology increases if it is to be
used for monitoring health and performance. The results
indicate that these new technologies will not be accepted
unconditionally and may be subject to bargaining and con-
flicts. In the implementation process, human resources
departments will have to take account of employee inter-
ests and well-being, which in turn may improve acceptance
and performance.
KEYWORDS
acceptance of technology, electronic monitoring, multifactorial
survey, technical change, tracking
Received: 18 July 2017 Revised: 2 June 2019 Accepted: 3 June 2019
DOI: 10.1111/1748-8583.12250
Hum Resour Manag J. 2019;29:657675. wileyonlinelibrary.com/journal/hrmj © 2019 John Wiley & Sons Ltd 657
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