Why some firms adopt telecommuting while others do not: A contingency perspective

Margarita Mayo, Juan Carlos Pastor, Luis Gomez-Mejia, Cristina Cruz

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

48 Scopus citations


Using a contingency perspective and data from 122 CEOs of Spanish firms, this paper examines what makes a firm likely to adopt telecommuting. We hypothesized that employer adoption of telecommuting would depend on organizational constraints (age and size of the firm), the international composition of the workforce, and the top executives' leadership style. In turn, we argue that firms adopting telecommuting would emphasize outcome-based control systems. Our empirical evidence showed that telecommuting correlated with small organizational size, a high proportion of international employees, and variable compensation. A contingent reward leadership style at the top moderated the effects of firm age and internationalization on the adoption of telecommuting.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)917-939
Number of pages23
JournalHuman Resource Management
Issue number6
StatePublished - Nov 2009
Externally publishedYes


  • Contingency theory
  • Contingent-reward leadership
  • Telecommuting
  • Work-family balance

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Applied Psychology
  • Strategy and Management
  • Organizational Behavior and Human Resource Management
  • Management of Technology and Innovation


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