The use and perception of social network sites in telecommuting work environments

Tomita, Dean K.
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[Honolulu] : [University of Hawaii at Manoa], [August 2014]
For the past forty years, communications technologies available to the telecommuter have remained basically the same, mainly offering one-to-one communication, like the phone and more recently, email. The web brought a myriad of freely available web applications and tools including social network sites, which provided the potential to address many of the challenges that have plagued telecommuting since its inception. These included questions surrounding communication, productivity, isolation and trust. Social network sites offered rich communication and provided an avenue for social interaction and social presence, all of which could help to improve communications, increase productivity, reduce isolation, and build trust. Employing a qualitative case study approach, this study sought to find out what happened when telecommuters used social network sites in a telecommuting work environment and how they managed personal and professional activities on these sites. This study discovered that social network sites enhanced telecommuting and was used for communication and collaboration to achieve work related goals and objectives, and also satisfied the telecommuter's social needs. However, this study found that telecommuters did not commingle personal and work online social communities, raising questions about whether it was the result of weak relationships within the team, or an indication that teams were still forming.
Ph.D. University of Hawaii at Manoa 2014.
Includes bibliographical references.
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