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Employee responses to relational fulfilment and work-life benefits: A social exchange study in the German public administration


  • Severin Hornung
  • Jürgen Glaser


Purpose - Investigating employee responses to relational fulfilment of the psychological contract and work-life benefits of a telecommuting program, this study aims to contribute to the literature on social exchange in employment. Design/methodology/approach - The setting of the study was the German public administration. Survey data from 947 Civil Servants were analyzed in structural equation models. Analysis of mean structure was used to compare telecommuting participants ( Findings - Trust and affective commitment consecutively mediated between relational fulfilment of the psychological contract and organizational citizenship behavior. Members of the telecommuting program had more positive representations of social exchange, reporting higher levels of fulfilment, trust, and commitment than their peers. Research limitations/implications - Reliance on cross-sectional self-report data poses a limitation. Selection effects in the quasi-experimental design for comparing telecommuters and regular employees cannot be ruled out. Generalizability to more transactional or short-term employment is debatable. Originality/value - The study adds to a more integrated understanding of the psychological processes that reinforce and strengthen employee trust and commitment, thus forming the basis of the motivation to go above and beyond specified duties and reward-contingent behavior.

Suggested Citation

  • Severin Hornung & Jürgen Glaser, 2010. "Employee responses to relational fulfilment and work-life benefits: A social exchange study in the German public administration," International Journal of Manpower, Emerald Group Publishing, vol. 31(1), pages 73-92, March.
  • Handle: RePEc:eme:ijmpps:v:31:y:2010:i:1:p:73-92

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    References listed on IDEAS

    1. A. De Vos & D. Buyens & R. Schalk, 2003. "Psychological Contract Development during Organizational Socialization: Adaptation to Reality and the Role of Reciprocity," Working Papers of Faculty of Economics and Business Administration, Ghent University, Belgium 03/194, Ghent University, Faculty of Economics and Business Administration.
    2. Cardona, Pablo & S. Lawrence, Barbara & M. Bentler, Peter, 2003. "Influence of social and work exchange relationships on organizational citizenship behavior, The," IESE Research Papers D/497, IESE Business School.
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