Smartphone Use after Work Mediates the Link between Organizational Norm of Connectivity and Emotional Exhaustion: Will Workaholism Make a Difference?

Yue Lok Francis CHEUNG, Vivian Miu Chi LUN, Hai‐Jiang WANG*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Journal PublicationsJournal Article (refereed)peer-review

Abstract

Using smartphone for work in off-work hours has been associated with negative employee outcomes. We postulate that: 1) organizational norm of connectivity precedes employees’ work-related smartphone use after work, which predicts emotional exhaustion among employees; and 2) this process is moderated by employees’ workaholism. We collected data from 399 full-time employees who completed six online surveys over three workdays to test our hypotheses. Multilevel path analysis of these data revealed that organizational norm of connectivity was more strongly related to smartphone use after work among employees with high workaholism compared to those with low workaholism. However, smartphone use was more strongly related to emotional exhaustion among those with low workaholism compared to those with high workaholism. In total, the indirect effect of organizational norm of connectivity on emotional exhaustion through work-related smartphone use after work was significant only for those with low workaholism. These findings highlight the role of organizational norm of connectivity and individual workaholism in the association of work-related smartphone use after work and negative employee outcomes. We discussed the theoretical and practical implications of these findings.
Original languageEnglish
JournalStress and Health
DOIs
Publication statusE-pub ahead of print - 19 Jul 2021

Bibliographical note

The last author's contribution [Wang Hai-Jiang] is supported by the National Natural Science Foundation of China (Grant No. 71701074; 71832004).

Keywords

  • emotional exhaustion
  • organizational norm of connectivity
  • smartphone use for work
  • workaholism

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