The Interplay of Challenge-Hindrance-Appraisal and Self-Efficacy: Technostress and Remote Working Performance


  • Manfred Schoch University of Augsburg & Fraunhofer FIT



IS Use, cognitive appraisal, self-efficacy, remote work, challenge-hindrance


Measures to contain the COVID-19 pandemic have caused many employees to work from home; a novel situation in which individuals used information systems (IS) more intensively to stay in touch with coworkers. This novel IS use situation affected individuals differently and resulted in both positive and negative outcomes. Recent calls for research advocate for clarification regarding the conceptualisation of appraisal, which explains different individual responses to objectively equal environments. In particular, challenge-hindrance-research does not differentiate between primary and secondary appraisal. Therefore, it remains unclear how individual capability beliefs, such as self-efficacy, affect challenge and hindrance IS use appraisal. We conduct an empirical study with 1,553 German employees to investigate these relationships and the positive and negative outcomes during the COVID-19 pandemic. We find that challenge and hindrance IS use appraisal, and remote working self-efficacy are interconnected, yet different constructs. We find that self-efficacy is related to challenge IS use appraisal, rather than hindrance IS use appraisal. Further, challenge IS use appraisal is a driver for performance in a remote working environment. We conclude that there are stressful aspects of IS use that are not influenced by an individual’s belief in their abilities. Our study emphasises the importance of remote working self-efficacy and IS use appraisal to mitigate techno-distress and increase performance during remote work.


Ayyagari, R., Grover, V., & Purvis, R. (2011). Technostress: Technological Antecedents and Implications. Management Information Systems Quarterly, 35(4), 831–858.

Bandura, A. (1977). Self-Efficacy: Toward a Unifying Theory of Behavioral Change. Psychological Review, 84(2), 191–215.

Beaudry, & Pinsonneault (2005). Understanding User Responses to Information Technology: A Coping Model of User Adaptation. Management Information Systems Quarterly, 29(3), 493.

Beaudry, & Pinsonneault (2010). The Other Side of Acceptance: Studying the Direct and Indirect Effects of Emotions on Information Technology Use. Management Information Systems Quarterly, 34(4), 689.

Benlian, A. (2020). A Daily Field Investigation of Technology-Driven Stress Spillovers from Work to Home. Management Information Systems Quarterly, 44(3).

Bhattacherjee, A., Davis, C. J., Connolly, A. J., & Hikmet, N. (2018). User response to mandatory IT use: a coping theory perspective. European Journal of Information Systems, 27(4), 395–414.

Burr, H., Berthelsen, H., Moncada, S., Nübling, M., Dupret, E., Demiral, Y., . . . Pohrt, A. (2019). The Third Version of the Copenhagen Psychosocial Questionnaire. Safety and Health at Work, 10(4), 482–503.

Burton-Jones, A., & Straub, D. W. (2006). Reconceptualizing System Usage: An Approach and Empirical Test. Information Systems Research, 17(3), 228–246.

Califf, C., Sarker, S. [Saonee], & Sarker, S. [Suprateek] (2020). The Bright and Dark Sides of Technostress: A Mixed-Methods Study Involving Healthcare IT. Management Information Systems Quarterly, 44(2).

Cavanaugh, M. A., Boswell, W. R., Roehling, M. V., & Boudreau, J. W. (2000). An Empirical Examination of Self-Reported Work Stress among U.S. Managers. Journal of Applied Psychology, 85(1), 65–74.

Compeau, D., Higgins, C. A., & Huff, S. (1999). Social Cognitive Theory and Individual Reactions to Computing Technology: A Longitudinal Study. Management Information Systems Quarterly, 23(2), 145.

Edwards, J. R., & Cooper, C. L. [C. L.] (1988). Research in stress, coping, and health: Theoretical and methodological issues. Psychological Medicine, 18(1), 15–20.

Ellsworth, P. C., & Scherer, K. R. (2003). Appraisal Processes in Emotion. In Series in affective science. Handbook of affective sciences (pp. 572–595). New York, NY, US: Oxford University Press.

Frone, M. R., Yardley, J. K., & Markel, K. S. (1997). Developing and Testing an Integrative Model of the Work–Family Interface. Journal of Vocational Behavior, 50(2), 145–167.

Galluch, P. S., Grover, V., & Thatcher, J. B. [Jason Bennett] (2015). Interrupting the Workplace: Examining Stressors in an Information Technology Context. Journal of the Association for Information Systems, 16(1), 1–47.

Garland, E., Gaylord, S., & Park, J. (2009). The Role of Mindfulness in Positive Reappraisal. Explore (New York, N.Y.), 5(1), 37–44.

Gibbons, C. (2010). Stress, Coping and Burn-out in Nursing Students. International Journal of Nursing Studies, 47(10), 1299.

Hair, J. F., Hult, G. T. M., Ringle, C. M., & & Sarstedt, M. (2017). A Primer on Partial Least Squares Structural Equation Modeling (PLS-SEM) (2nd edition). Thousand Oaks, CA: Sage Publications.

Harrison, A. W., Rainer, R. K., Hochwarter, W. A., & Thompson, K. R. (1997). Testing the Self-Efficacy-Performance Linkage of Social-Cognitive Theory. The Journal of Social Psychology, 137(1), 79–87.

Henseler, J., Ringle, C. M., & Sarstedt, M. (2015). A New Criterion for Assessing Discriminant Validity in Variance-Based Structural Equation Modeling. Journal of the Academy of Marketing Science, 43(1), 115–135.

Hu, X., Park, Y., Day, A., & Barber, L. K. (2021). Time to Disentangle the Information and Communication Technology (ICT) Constructs: Developing a Taxonomy around ICT Use for Occupational Health Research. Occupational Health Science, 1–29.

Jarvis, C. B., MacKenzie, S. B., & Podsakoff, P. M. (2003). A Critical Review of Construct Indicators and Measurement Model Misspecification in Marketing and Consumer Research. Journal of Consumer Research, 30(2), 199–218.

Jerusalem, M., & Schwarzer, R. (2010). Self-Efficacy as a Resource Factor in Stress Appraisal Processes. In R. Schwarzer (ed.), Self-efficacy: Thought control of action (pp. 195–213). Washington, DC: Hemisphere Publishing.

Krohne, H. W. (2001). Stress and Coping Theories. In N. J. e. Smelser & P. B. e. Baltes (Eds.), International Encyclopedia of The Social & Behavioral Sciences (pp. 15163–15170). Amsterdam, New York: Elsevier.

Kruger, J., & Dunning, D. (1999). Unskilled and Unaware of it: How Difficulties in Recognizing One's Own Incompetence Lead to Inflated Self-Assessments. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 77(6), 1121–1134.

Lazarus, R. S., & Folkman, S. (1984). Stress, Appraisal, and Coping. New York: Springer.

Lazarus, R. S., & Launier, R. (1978). Stress-Related Transactions between Person and Environment. In Perspectives in Interactional Psychology (Vol. 2, pp. 287–327). Springer, Boston, MA.

Lepine, J. A., Podsakoff, N. P., & LePine, M. A. (2005). A Meta-Analytic Test of the Challenge Stressor–Hindrance Stressor Framework: An Explanation for Inconsistent Relationships Among Stressors and Performance. Academy of Management Journal, 48(5), 764–775.

LePine, M. A., Zhang, Y., Crawford, E. R., & Rich, B. L. (2016). Turning their Pain to Gain: Charismatic Leader Influence on Follower Stress Appraisal and Job Performance. Academy of Management Journal, 59(3), 1036–1059.

Liang, & Xue (2009). Avoidance of Information Technology Threats: A Theoretical Perspective. Management Information Systems Quarterly, 33(1), 71.

Lindell, M. K., & Whitney, D. J. (2001). Accounting for Common Method Variance in Cross-Sectional Research Designs. The Journal of Applied Psychology, 86(1), 114–121.

Maier, C., Laumer, S., Eckhardt, A., & Weitzel, T. (2015). Giving too much Social Support: Social Overload on Social Networking Sites. European Journal of Information Systems, 24(5), 447–464.

Maier, C., Laumer, S., Tarafdar, M., Mattke, J., Reis, L., & Weitzel, T. (2021). Challenge and Hindrance IS Use Stressors and Appraisals: Explaining Contrarian Associations in Post-Acceptance IS Use Behavior. Journal of the Association for Information Systems, 1–60.

Maier, C., Laumer, S., Weinert, C., & Weitzel, T. (2015). The Effects of Technostress and Switching Stress on Discontinued Use of Social Networking Services: A Study of Facebook Use. Information Systems Journal, 25(3), 275–308.

Mazzola, J. J., & Disselhorst, R. (2019). Should we Be “Challenging” Employees? A Critical Review and Meta‐Analysis of the Challenge‐Hindrance Model of Stress. Journal of Organizational Behavior, 40(8), 949–961.

Mohajeri, K., Mesgari, M., & Lee, A. (2020). When Statistical Significance Is Not Enough: Investigating Relevance, Practical Significance, and Statistical Significance. Management Information Systems Quarterly, 44(2), 525–559. Retrieved from

Möhring, K., Naumann, E., Reifenscheid, M., Weiland, A., Blom, A. G., Wenz, A., . . . Cornesse, C. (2020). Die Mannheimer Corona-Studie: Schwerpunktbericht zur Erwerbstätigkeit in Deutschland 20.3.-15.4.2020. Retrieved from Retrieved from:

Ortiz de Guinea, A. (2016). A pragmatic multi-method investigation of discrepant technological events: Coping, attributions, and ‘accidental’ learning. Information & Management, 53(6), 787–802.

Pirkkalainen, H., Salo, M., Tarafdar, M., & Makkonen, M. (2019). Deliberate or Instinctive? Proactive and Reactive Coping for Technostress. Journal of Management Information Systems, 36(4), 1179–1212.

Podsakoff, N. P., Lepine, J. A., & LePine, M. A. (2007). Differential Challenge Stressor Hindrance Stressor Relationships with Job Attitudes, Turnover Intentions, Turnover, and Withdrawal Behavior: A Meta-Analysis. Journal of Applied Psychology, 92(2), 438–454.

Polites, G. L., Roberts, N., & Thatcher, J. (2012). Conceptualizing Models Using Multidimensional Constructs: A Review and Guidelines for their Use. European Journal of Information Systems, 21(1), 22–48.

Ragu-Nathan, T. S., Tarafdar, M., Ragu-Nathan, B. S., & Tu, Q. (2008). The Consequences of Technostress for End Users in Organizations: Conceptual Development and Empirical Validation. Information Systems Research, 19(4), 417–433.

Richardson, H. A., Simmering, M. J., & Sturman, M. C. (2009). A Tale of Three Perspectives: Examining Post Hoc Statistical Techniques for Detection and Correction of Common Method Variance. Organizational Research Methods, 12(4), 762–800.

Salo, M., Makkonen, M., & Hekkala, R. (2020). The Interplay of IT Users’ Coping Strategies: Uncovering Momentary Emotional Load, Routes, and Sequences. Management Information Systems Quarterly, 44(3), 1143–1175.

Salo, M., Pirkkalainen, H., Makkonen, M., & Hekkala, R. (2018). Distress, Eustress, or No Stress? Explaining Smartphone Users™ Different Technostress Responses. Proceedings of the 39th International Conference on Information Systems (ICIS). Retrieved from

Searle, B. J., & Auton, J. C. (2015). The Merits of Measuring Challenge and Hindrance Appraisals. Anxiety, Stress, and Coping, 28(2), 121–143.

Shu, Q., Tu, Q., & Wang, K. (2011). The Impact of Computer Self-Efficacy and Technology Dependence on Computer-Related Technostress: A Social Cognitive Theory Perspective. International Journal of Human–Computer Interaction, 27(10), 923–939.

Sitzmann, T., & Yeo, G. (2013). A Meta-Analytic Investigation of the Within-Person Self-Efficacy Domain: Is Self-Efficacy a Product of Past Performance or a Driver of Future Performance? Personnel Psychology, 66(3), 531–568.

Smith, C. A., & Kirby, L. D. (2011). The Role of Appraisal and Emotion in Coping and Adaptation.: In: The Handbook of Stress Science. New York NY: Springer.

Spataro, J. (2020). Remote Work Trend Report: Meetings. Retrieved from Retrieved from:

Srivastava, S. C., Chandra, S., & Shirish, A. (2015). Technostress creators and job outcomes: Theorising the moderating influence of personality traits. Information Systems Journal, 25(4), 355–401.

Stein, M.‑K., Newell, S., Wagner, E., & Galliers, R. (2015). Coping with Information Technology: Mixed Emotions, Vacillation, and Nonconforming Use Patterns. Management Information Systems Quarterly.

Stich, J.‑F., Tarafdar, M., Stacey, P., & Cooper, C. (2019). Appraisal of Email Use as A Source of Workplace Stress: A Person-Environment Fit Approach. Journal of the Association for Information Systems, 20(2), 132–160.

Tams, S., Ahuja, M., Thatcher, J., & Grover, V. (2020). Worker stress in the age of mobile technology: The combined effects of perceived interruption overload and worker control. The Journal of Strategic Information Systems, 29(1), 101595.

Tams, S., Thatcher, J. B. [Jason B.], & Grover, V. (2018). Concentration, Competence, Confidence, and Capture: An Experimental Study of Age, Interruption-based Technostress, and Task Performance. Journal of the Association for Information Systems, 19, 857–908.

Tarafdar, M., Cooper, C. L., & Stich, J.‑F. (2019). The Technostress Trifecta ‐ Techno Eustress, Techno Distress and Design: Theoretical Directions and an Agenda for Research. Information Systems Journal, 29(1), 6–42.

Tarafdar, M., Pullins, E. B., & Ragu-Nathan, T. S. (2015). Technostress: Negative Effect on Performance and Possible Mitigations. Information Systems Journal, 25(2), 103–132.

Tims, M., B. Bakker, A., & Derks, D. (2014). Daily Job Crafting and the Self-Efficacy – Performance Relationship. Journal of Managerial Psychology, 29(5), 490–507.

Vaziri, H., Casper, W. J., Wayne, J. H., & Matthews, R. A. (2020). Changes to the Work-Family Interface during the COVID-19 Pandemic: Examining Predictors and Implications Using Latent Transition Analysis. Journal of Applied Psychology, 105(10), 1073–1087.

Venkatesh, V., Thong, J. Y., & Xu, X. (2012). Consumer Acceptance and Use of Information Technology: Extending the Unified Theory of Acceptance and Use of Technology. Management Information Systems Quarterly, 36(1), 157–178.

Wang, Y., & Haggerty, N. (2011). Individual Virtual Competence and Its Influence on Work Outcomes. Journal of Management Information Systems, 27(4), 299–334.




How to Cite

Schoch, M. (2023). The Interplay of Challenge-Hindrance-Appraisal and Self-Efficacy: Technostress and Remote Working Performance . Australasian Journal of Information Systems, 27.



Research Articles