The feasibility of mobile telework / virtual working: a study of 3PL firms in India

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Francis, Clarissa Jayashree
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MBA in Project Management
Dublin Business School
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Purpose – The purpose of this research paper is to explore the feasibility of adopting virtual working by 3pl service providers firms in India. This paper explores virtual working in general, key models of virtual office implementation and its impact in the current environment and then narrows down to studying the 3pl modus operandi in India and virtual working adoption by these firms. It further investigates the multigenerational workforce, work/life balance, formation and managing aspects of a virtual team. Design/methodology/approach - A systematic and constructive research approach has been followed. Quantitative research methodology has been adopted to gather the relevant data to provide suitable solution to the research problem. A total of 100 respondents representing the 3pl service provider firms have been considered as the sample population for data analysis and findings. 88% of respondent were employees and 12 % were employers. Out of the 88 % respondent of multigenerational workforce 46% were Gen Y, 52 % were Gen X and 2% baby boomers. 90 % of sample population were graduates. Findings – The primary data analysis reveal that acceptance of the workforce of virtual working while the employers are reluctant to explore the possible setup of virtual working although they can perceive benefits such as reduction in cost, larger labour pool, superior usage of time, enhanced brand image, greater retention level, more productivity etc. The cultural influence analysis has revealed a positive influence on adoption of virtual working. Multigenerational virtual workforces have an impact on adoption of virtual working. Research limitation/implications – Since the research methodology adopted is only quantitative methodology the findings could not be cross verified with qualitative methodology which would have added more relevance to the findings. The sample population does not justify the representation of the entire 3pl service provider firms. The study encountered limitation in generalisation of the findings due to the cross sectional aspect of time horizon and self – report data analysis.