The influence of enterprise social media on employees’ wellbeing: A research agenda

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As part of their digital transformation, companies increasingly adopt social platforms (e.g., Slack, Yammer, Podio, Asana) to support knowledge work and company communication. These platforms do not only transform work processes, they also affect how employees relate to each other, how they share content and how they work effectively (Kane, 2015). With social platforms, companies transform their decision processes, increase transparency and creativity, and work processes like recruitment, training or vocational adjustment are changed. However, social media usage at the workplace can be challenging, e.g., leading to an oversupply of information or an invasion of working issues into private life (Bucher, Fieseler, & Suphan, 2013). Social platforms change working processes and organizational culture, thereby indirectly influencing employees and their wellbeing. Ipsen and Jensen (2012) found that knowledge workers can experience the same work-related or organizational issues as both an opportunity and a source of stress. E.g., while social media communication can provide the opportunity for some knowledge workers to ask questions and get answers from different co-workers, it might be a threat for others who feel that they always have to be online to be able to answer (Kirchner & Seim, 2019). The aim of this study is to understand the influence of social media use on employee well-being. In order to derive open research questions, we conducted an in-depth literature review. We searched Web of Science, ScienceDirect, PubMed and Google Scholar, using search words like enterprise social platform, wellbeing, social media, work environment, psychosocial work environment and mental health. Afterwards, we analyzed and clustered the articles. We found that existing literature focuses on psychosocial effects of private use of social media on the individual in general. Furthermore, previous research concentrates on the organizational use and impact on work performance of social media platforms, but ignore the effect on the individual worker. Besides, literature rarely investigates the influence of changed work processes due to social media use on the wellbeing of the individual. We conclude that here is a need to understand the influence of the use of social media for internal communication and knowledge sharing on the well-being of employees. This field is not well researched. Based on our findings from the literature, we derive a research agenda with open questions that can be a guideline for other researchers in this field.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationProceedings of the 14th European Academy of Occupational Health Psychology (EAOHP) Conference 2020
Publication date2020
Publication statusPublished - 2020
Event14th European Academy of Occupational Health Psychology - Virtual, Cyprus
Duration: 2 Sep 20204 Sep 2020


Conference14th European Academy of Occupational Health Psychology

Bibliographical note

Kathrin Kirchner, Rikke Seim, Christine Ipsen (2020): The influence of enterprise social media on employees’ wellbeing: A research agenda. Proceedings of the 14th European Academy of Occupational Health Psychology (EAOHP) Conference 2020. Promoting healthy and sustainable work, p.130,

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