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Special Communications

An affordance perspective of team collaboration and enforced working from home during COVID-19

ORCID Icon, ORCID Icon, ORCID Icon & ORCID Icon
Pages 429-442
Received 10 May 2020
Accepted 20 Jul 2020
Published online: 12 Aug 2020

ABSTRACT

COVID-19 has caused unprecedented challenges to our lives. Many governments have forced people to stay at home, leading to a radical shift from on-site to virtual collaboration for many knowledge workers. Existing remote working literature does not provide a thorough explanation of government-enforced working from home situations. Using an affordance lens, this study explores the sudden and enforced issues that COVID-19 has presented, and the technological means knowledge workers use to achieve their team collaboration goals. We interviewed 29 knowledge workers about their experiences of being required to work from home and introduced the term “enforced work from home”. This paper contributes to the affordance theory by providing an understanding of the substitution of affordances for team collaboration during COVID-19. The shifting of affordances results in positive and negative effects on team collaboration as various affordances of technology were perceived and actualised to sustain “business as usual”.

Disclosure statement

No potential conflict of interest was reported by the authors.

Correction Statement

This article has been republished with minor changes. These changes do not impact the academic content of the article.

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