Computer-mediated-communication and social networking tools at work

C.X.J. Ou, C.L. Sia, C.K. Hui

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticleScientificpeer-review

    30 Citations (Scopus)
    2739 Downloads (Pure)


    – Advances in information technology (IT) have resulted in the development of various computer‐mediated communication (CMC) and social networking tools. However, quantifying the benefits of utilizing these tools in the organizational context remains a challenge. In this study, the authors aim to investigate the effects of three specific tools, viz. instant messenger, email and knowledge forum, on facilitating the communication and social network at work, and their subsequent influence on individuals’ work performance. Together with a social network diagram, the proposed model is validated by a survey of 59 employees of a company which embeds these three CMC and social networking tools in the work process. The key findings, implications and future research are discussed.

    – The authors verify the research model with data from the Hong Kong office of an international bank headquartered in London, UK. They also collected the data on the social networks of 59 employees to draw a network diagram of the respondents using the social network analysis software UCINET.

    – The research model is fully supported by the survey data. Meanwhile, the social networks analysis also suggests the linkage of using IM at work and the high level of degree and high level of closeness.

    – This study provided an empirical verification of media performance theories, evidenced by interactive tools such as IM and email. This research also directly linked the elements of social network, viz. degree, closeness and betweenness, with the CMC and social network tools, the communication, interactivity, relationship, and work performance.
    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)172-190
    JournalInformation Technology & People
    Issue number2
    Publication statusPublished - 2013


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