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Modelling the perceptions toward telecommuting in Malaysia : fundamentals, findings and forecasts

Abdul Azeez, Kadar Hamsa (1998) Modelling the perceptions toward telecommuting in Malaysia : fundamentals, findings and forecasts. PhD thesis, Universiti Teknologi Malaysia, Faculty of Management.

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Telecommuting or Teleworking, an innovative work option initiative in Malaysia, is the total or partial substitution of information and communication technology (lCT) systems for commute trip to and from the primary workplace. Telecommuting has been gaining significant focus, nowadays, because of flexibility of worknature, reduction in commute trips, possible mitigation of traffic congestion, rearing of dependents at the household and economic development ofrural areas. Moreover, the advancement in information and communication technology has greatly supported for a pragmatic approach toward greater consideration of work at home options. Furthermore, it will be well supplemented with government's strong desire to transform the nation into an information and knowledgeable society. Multimedia Super Corridor (MSC), one of the auspicious and prestigious information technology related projects with several major flagship applications, will further augment greater technological support toward this progressive trend. The proliferation in the advancement of information technology to ascertain the extent of technological support toward facilitation of wider dissemination of telecommuting option in Malaysian organizations had been studied. Additionally, the penetration level of telecommunication and computer technologies was analyzed to determine not only the growth rates in the number of users but also growth pattern of these technological improvement for the likely support toward technologically driven work practices. Having realized the significant role of information technology for the consideration of telecommuting option in Malaysia, a case study was undertaken in Johor Bahru to study the perception of employees and management in both public and private sectors toward telecommuting phenomenon. Three employees and a manager or a representative from each firm were randomly selected to represent potential compatible workforces and view of management's decision toward telecommuting. The analysis of work, travel and socio-economic indicators of the stated preferred telecommuters indicate the relative distribution of individual category of these characteristics of the employees for accepting or not accepting this new work arrangement. This study has also directly addressed factors being associated with preference to telecommute among the selected employees. Nearly 73% ofthe employees had expressed willingness to adopt telecommuting for at least one day in a week. Moreover, the degree of influence ofthese factors toward greater propensity to adopt telecommuting was also analyzed by constructing an unsaturated logit model. The utilization of this model was applied mainly because of the qualitative nature of dichotomous response variable having a 'yes' or 'no' category. The analysis of the model has showed that all explanatory variables except bearing up of expenses involved to set up home office were assigned with a positive sign toward inclination to adopt telecommuting. The motivators which drive employees toward preference to adopt telecommuting and constraints which inhibit the preference to adopt telecommuting were also discussed. Tne forecasted number of potential telecommuters was estimated to evaluate the implication of telecommuting on transportation parameters such as commute trip, commute time, passenger-kilometreand vehicle-kilometre for different selected scenarios. The forecasted figure for optimum case scenario showed that there would be nearly 75,264 number of potential telecommuters in Johor Bahru which is approximately 45% of information workers by the year 2020. The estimation ofreduction in commute trips, commute time, passenger-kilometre and vehicle-kilometre have illustrated a maximum reduction rate of not more than 10% of total values generated. The perception of management on the decision to implement telecommuting in their organizations was noted. It showed that only 46% of the management were inclined to consider telecommuting for their compatible employees for at least I day per week. Nevertheless, their inclinations were greater toward centre-based rather than home-based work arrangement. Finally, recommendations were drawn for not only suggesting more analyses on various other aspects of telecommuting but also emphasizing perusal of several measures on a case by case basis in order to fully comprehend viability, dissemination and supportiveness toward technology driven work practice.

Item Type:Thesis (PhD)
Additional Information:Thesis (Ph.D) - Universiti Teknologi Malaysia, 1998
Subjects:H Social Sciences > HD Industries. Land use. Labor
ID Code:44194
Deposited By: Haliza Zainal
Deposited On:25 Feb 2015 09:21
Last Modified:19 Jul 2017 12:50

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