The past decade has witnessed explosive growth in the segment of information technology (IT) professionals who work in the offshore business process outsourcing (BPO) industry. BPO positions are highly regimented and standardized with coercive and normative controls to deter employees from deviating from prescribed work procedures and exercising independent judgment. Coping with these challenges requires a different set of skills than human capital and technical competencies that are discussed in most prior information systems (IS) research. This paper develops theory on the role of social support in employee compensation, and tests the theory using a unique data set of 8,000+ Indian BPO professionals during the 2006–2011 time period. Co-worker social support has a larger impact at higher levels of time stress and supervisor stress, while supervisor social support plays a larger role for senior-level positions than for junior-level positions. We discuss implications of our theory and findings for research and practice.

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Working Paper

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Copyright © 2020 The Authors. This article first appeared as a working paper in SSRN (January 30, 2020).

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Citation Example for Article (Chicago):

Whitaker, Jonathan, Violet Ho, Sunil Mithas, and Dongwon Lee. "Human Capital is Not Enough: How Offshore BPO Professionals Use Social Support to Deal with Strenuous Work Conditions." University of Richmond Working Paper (January 30, 2020): available at https://ssrn.com/abstract=3651526.