What Role Perceived Justice Play between Job Boredom and Cyber-loafing? A Mediational Inquiry of Employees at Software Houses


  • Faiz Younas Lecturer, Institute of Applied Psychology, University of the Punjab, Lahore, Pakistan.
  • Maryam Abbas BS (Hons) Scholar, Institute of Applied Psychology, University of the Punjab, Lahore, Pakistan.
  • Shazia Qayyum Associate Professor, Institute of Applied Psychology, University of the Punjab, Lahore, Pakistan.




Cyberloafing, Employees working at Software Houses, IT Professionals, Job Boredom, Perceived Justice


Owning to the very nature of their work, employees working in the field of information technology (IT) have higher exposure to internet use and surfing. This is why, the phenomenon of cyberloafing is quite common among IT professionals. Taking this into account, our study proposed to investigate the interrelatedness among job boredom, perceived justice and cyberloafing in employees (N = 213) working under software developers at various software houses in Lahore. Results indicated that while job boredom increased with an increase in cyberloafing, an inverse association was observed between perceived justice and cyberloafing. Correspondingly, cyberloafing was significantly predicted by both job boredom and perceived justice. Moreover, perceived justice emerged as a partial mediator between job boredom and cyberloafing. While our findings made valuable additions to the indigenous literature, they can also facilitate counsellors and therapists working in organizational settings as well as the personnel at human resource departments to collaborate on working towards creating a conducive workplace environment that can curtail cyberloafing and boredom by increasing a sense of justice among employees.


Adams, J. S. (1965). Inequity in social exchange. Advances in Experimental Social Psychology, 2(1), 267–299. https://doi.org/10.1016/s0065-2601(08)60108-2 DOI: https://doi.org/10.1016/S0065-2601(08)60108-2

Alharthi, S., Levy, Y., Wang, L., & Hur, I. (2019). Employees’ mobile cyberslacking and their commitment to the organization. Journal of Computer Information Systems, 61(2), 141–153. https://doi.org/10.1080/08874417.2019.1571455 DOI: https://doi.org/10.1080/08874417.2019.1571455

Altinkurt, Y., Yilmaz , K., & Karam, G. (2015). The effect of gender, seniority and subject matter on the perceptions of organizational justice of teachers: A meta-analytical study. Educational Sciences: Theory & Practice, 15(1), 33–43. https://doi.org/10.12738/estp.2015.1.2264 DOI: https://doi.org/10.12738/estp.2015.1.2264

Andel, S. A., Kessler, S. R., Pindek, S., Kleinman, G., & Spector, P. E. (2019). Is cyberloafing more complex than we originally thought? Cyberloafing as a coping response to workplace aggression exposure. Computers in Human Behavior, 101, 124–130. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.chb.2019.07.013 DOI: https://doi.org/10.1016/j.chb.2019.07.013

Andel, S., Pindek, S., & Arvan, M. L. (2021). Bored, angry, and overqualified? The high- and low-intensity pathways linking perceived overqualification to behavioural outcomes. European Journal of Work and Organizational Psychology, 31(1), 47–60. https://doi.org/10.1080/1359432x.2021.1919624 DOI: https://doi.org/10.1080/1359432X.2021.1919624

Askew, K. L., & Buckner, J. E. (2017). The role of the work station: Visibility of one’s computer screen to coworkers influences cyberloafing through self-efficacy to hide cyberloafing. The Psychologist-Manager Journal, 20(4), 267–287. https://doi.org/10.1037/mgr0000061 DOI: https://doi.org/10.1037/mgr0000061

Azizah, S. N., & Setyawati, H. A. (2019). Cyberloafing sebagai strategi mengatasi kebosanan kerja. Fokus Bisnis : Media Pengkajian Manajemen Dan Akuntansi, 18(1), 1–7. https://doi.org/10.32639/fokusbisnis.v18i1.301 DOI: https://doi.org/10.32639/fokusbisnis.v18i1.301

Baratta, P. (2019). State Boredom and Workplace Behaviours: Does Feeling Bored Lead to Increases in Daily Counterproductive Work Behaviour, Organizational Citizenship Behaviour, and Job Crafting? [Doctoral dissertation, University of Guelph]. The Atrium. http://hdl.handle.net/10214/16940

Bauer, J. A., & Spector, P. E. (2015). Discrete negative emotions and counterproductive work behavior. Human Performance, 28(4), 307–331. https://doi.org/10.1080/08959285.2015.1021040 DOI: https://doi.org/10.1080/08959285.2015.1021040

Blau, G., Yang, Y., & Ward-Cook, K. (2006). Testing a measure of cyberloafing. Journal of Allied Health, 35(1), 9-17.

Blau, P. M. (1964). Justice in social exchange. Sociological Inquiry, 34(2), 193–206. https://doi.org/10.1111/j.1475-682x.1964.tb00583.x DOI: https://doi.org/10.1111/j.1475-682X.1964.tb00583.x

Canova, L., & Nicolini, M. (2019). Online price search across desktop and mobile devices: Evidence on cyberslacking and weather effects. Journal of Retailing and Consumer Services, 47, 32–39. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jretconser.2018.10.010 DOI: https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jretconser.2018.10.010

Chavan, M., Galperin, B. L., Ostle, A., & Behl, A. (2021). Millennial’s perception on cyberloafing: Workplace deviance or cultural norm? Behaviour & Information Technology, 41(13), 2860–2877. https://doi.org/10.1080/0144929x.2021.1956588 DOI: https://doi.org/10.1080/0144929X.2021.1956588

Cheng, B., Zhou, X., Guo, G., & Yang, K. (2018). Perceived overqualification and cyberloafing: A moderated-mediation model based on equity theory. Journal of Business Ethics, 164(3), 565–577. https://doi.org/10.1007/s10551-018-4026-8 DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/s10551-018-4026-8

Cohen-Charash, Y., & Spector, P. E. (2001). The role of justice in organizations: A meta-analysis. Organizational Behavior and Human Decision Processes, 86(2), 278–321. https://doi.org/10.1006/obhd.2001.2958 DOI: https://doi.org/10.1006/obhd.2001.2958

Cropanzano, R., & Mitchell, M. S. (2005). Social Exchange Theory: An interdisciplinary review. Journal of Management, 31(6), 874–900. DOI: https://doi.org/10.1177/0149206305279602

Cummings, M. L., Gao, F., & Thornburg, K. M. (2016). Boredom in the workplace. Human Factors: The Journal of the Human Factors and Ergonomics Society, 58(2), 279–300. https://doi.org/10.1177/0018720815609503 DOI: https://doi.org/10.1177/0018720815609503

Dede, D., & Rinnanik, R. (2020). Pengaruh moderasi spiritualitas Islam di tempat kerja terhadap keadilan organisasi dan cyberloafing: Studi pada bank berbasis Islam di Lampung Timur. Jurnal Manajemen, 15(2). 213-222. https://doi.org/10.24127/jm.v15i2.634.

Dixon, S. L. (2022, April 28). Share of workers in the United States who check their personal e-mails during normal work hours as of July 2019, by frequency. Statista. https://www.statista.com/statistics/911592/frequency-consumers-checking-work-emails-outside-work-hours/

Emerson, R. M. (1976). Social Exchange Theory. Annual Review of Sociology, 2(1), 335–362. https://doi.org/10.1146/annurev.so.02.080176.002003 DOI: https://doi.org/10.1146/annurev.so.02.080176.002003

Farndale, E., Agarwal, P., & Budhwar, P. (2022). Outcomes of talent identification in economically liberalized India: Does organizational justice matter? Journal of Business Research, 144. 740-750. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jbusres.2022.02.043. DOI: https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jbusres.2022.02.043

Fein, E. C., Tziner, A., & Vasiliu, C. (2023). Perceptions of ethical climate and organizational justice as antecedents to employee performance: The mediating role of employees’ attributions of leader effectiveness. European Management Journal, 41(1), 114-124. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.emj.2021.11.003 DOI: https://doi.org/10.1016/j.emj.2021.11.003

Giordano, C., & Mercado, B. K. (2023). Cyberloafing: Investigating the importance and implications of new and known predictors. Collabra: Psychology, 9(1), 57391. https://doi.org/10.1525/collabra.57391 DOI: https://doi.org/10.1525/collabra.57391

Hadlington, L., & Parsons, K. (2017). Can cyberloafing and internet addiction affect organizational information security? Cyberpsychology, Behavior, and Social Networking, 20(9), 567–571. https://doi.org/10.1089/cyber.2017.0239 DOI: https://doi.org/10.1089/cyber.2017.0239

Hameed, Z., Khan, I. U., Sheikh, Z., Islam, T., Rasheed, M. I., & Naeem, R. M. (2019). Organizational justice and knowledge sharing behavior. Personnel Review, 48(3), 748–773. https://doi.org/10.1108/pr-07-2017-0217 DOI: https://doi.org/10.1108/PR-07-2017-0217

Homans, G. C. (1961). Social behavior: Its elementary forms. Harcourt, Brace.

Hu, Y., Chen, Y., & Ye, M. (2023). Eager to belong: Social cyberloafing as a coping response to workplace ostracism. Current Psychology, 42, 3372-3381. https://doi.org/10.1007/s12144-021-01690-y DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/s12144-021-01690-y

Husna, F. H., Silviandari, I. A., & Susilawati, I. R. (2020). Kebosanan kerja sebagai prediktor perilaku cyberloafing pada karyawan. Jurnal Studia Insania, 8(1), 43. https://doi.org/10.18592/jsi.v8i1.3516 DOI: https://doi.org/10.18592/jsi.v8i1.3516

Jamaluddin, H., Ahmad, Z., Alias, M., & Simun, M. (2015). Personal internet use: The use of personal mobile devices at the workplace. Procedia - Social and Behavioral Sciences, 172, 495–502. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.sbspro.2015.01.391 DOI: https://doi.org/10.1016/j.sbspro.2015.01.391

Jeong, Y., Jung, H., & Lee, J. (2020). Cyberslacking or smart work: Smartphone usage log-analysis focused on app-switching behavior in work and leisure conditions. International Journal of Human–Computer Interaction, 36(1), 15–30. https://doi.org/10.1080/10447318.2019.1597574 DOI: https://doi.org/10.1080/10447318.2019.1597574

Jepsen, D. M., & Rodwell, J. (2007, December 4-7). Gender differences in organizational justice predicting the key employee outcomes of organizational commitment, job satisfaction and turnover intention [Paper presentation]. 21st Australian and New Zealand Academy of Management Conference, Sydney, NSW, Australia. http://www.deakin.edu.au/dro/view/DU:30016763

Khansa, L., Barkhi, R., Ray, S., & Davis, Z. (2018). Cyberloafing in the workplace: Mitigation tactics and their impact on individuals’ behavior. Information Technology and Management, 19(4), 197–215. https://doi.org/10.1007/s10799-017-0280-1 DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/s10799-017-0280-1

Krasniqi, V., Yulita., Idris, M. A., & Dollard, M. F. (2019). Psychosocial safety climate and job demands-resources: A multilevel study predicting boredom. In M. F. Dollard, C. Dorman, & M. A. Idris (Eds.), Psychosocial safety climate: A new work stress theory (pp.129-148). Springer. DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-030-20319-1_5

Le, H., & Pan, L. (2021). Examining the empirical redundancy of organizational justice constructs. Organizational Behavior and Human Decision Processes, 165, 21–44. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.obhdp.2021.03.004 DOI: https://doi.org/10.1016/j.obhdp.2021.03.004

Lee, J., & Wetzel, Z. (2023). Boredom in the workplace and its relationship to life satisfaction among recreation and leisure professionals. Tourism & Management Studies, 19(1), 41–48. https://doi.org/10.18089/tms.2023.190104 DOI: https://doi.org/10.18089/tms.2023.190104

Lim, V. K. G. (2002). The IT way of loafing on the job: Cyberloafing, neutralizing and organizational justice. Journal of Organizational Behavior, 23(5), 675–694. https://doi.org/10.1002/job.161 DOI: https://doi.org/10.1002/job.161

Loukidou, L., Loan-Clarke, J., & Daniels, K. (2009). Boredom in the workplace: More than monotonous tasks. International Journal of Management Reviews, 11(4), 381–405. https://doi.org/10.1111/j.1468-2370.2009.00267.x DOI: https://doi.org/10.1111/j.1468-2370.2009.00267.x

Luqman, A., Talwar, S., Masood, A., & Dhir, A. (2021). Does enterprise social media use promote employee creativity and well-being? Journal of Business Research, 131(2), 40–54. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jbusres.2021.03.051 DOI: https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jbusres.2021.03.051

Mael, F., & Jex, S. (2015). Workplace boredom. Group & Organization Management, 40(2), 131–159. https://doi.org/10.1177/1059601115575148 DOI: https://doi.org/10.1177/1059601115575148

Matteson, M. L., Ming, Y., & Silva, D. E. (2021). The relationship between work conditions and perceptions of organizational justice among library employees. Library & Information Science Research, 43(2), 101093. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.lisr.2021.101093 DOI: https://doi.org/10.1016/j.lisr.2021.101093

Megaputri, N. E., & Suharti, L. (2022). The effect of role ambiguity and organizational justice on cyberloafing with job stress as a mediation variable. International Journal of Social Science and Business, 6(2), 268–274. https://doi.org/10.23887/ijssb.v6i2.45562 DOI: https://doi.org/10.23887/ijssb.v6i2.45562

Metin-Orta, I., & Demirutku, K. (2022). Cyberloafing behaviors among university students and its relation to hedonistic-stimulation value orientation, cyberloafing attitudes, and time spent on the internet. Current Psychology, 41(7), 4271–4282. https://doi.org/10.1007/s12144-020-00932-9 DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/s12144-020-00932-9

Niehoff, P.B., & Moorman, H.R. (1993). Justice as a mediator of the relationship between methods of monitoring and organizational citizenship behavior. Academy of Management Journal, 36(3), 527-556. DOI: https://doi.org/10.5465/256591

Nugraha, I. P. J., & WayanMujiati, N. (2020). The effect of organizational justice on job satisfaction and employee performance of PT. Merapi Utama Pharma. American Journal of Humanities and Social Sciences Research, 4(11), 223–229.

Ohana, M., Murtaza, G., Haq, I. ul, Al-Shatti, E., & Chi, Z. (2023). Why and when can CSR toward employees lead to cyberloafing? The role of workplace boredom and moral disengagement. Journal of Business Ethics. https://doi.org/10.1007/s10551-023-05358-4 DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/s10551-023-05358-4

Oosthuizen, A., Rabie, G. H., & De Beer, L. T. (2018). Investigating cyberloafing, organisational justice, work engagement and organisational trust of South African retail and manufacturing employees. SA Journal of Human Resource Management, 16(1), 1-11. https://doi.org/10.4102/sajhrm.v16i0.1001 DOI: https://doi.org/10.4102/sajhrm.v16i0.1001

Oubrich, M., Hakmaoui, A., Benhayoun, L., Solberg Söilen, K., & Abdulkader, B. (2021). Impacts of leadership style, organizational design and HRM practices on knowledge hiding: The indirect roles of organizational justice and competitive work environment. Journal of Business Research, 137, 488–499. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jbusres.2021.08.045 DOI: https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jbusres.2021.08.045

Petrosyan, A. (2023, March 31). Adults worldwide using work devices for personal activities 2021. Statista. https://www.statista.com/statistics/1147916/share-adults-worldwide-employer-issued-device-personal-activities-country/#statisticContainer

Pindek, S., Krajcevska, A., & Spector, P. E. (2018). Cyberloafing as a coping mechanism: Dealing with workplace boredom. Computers in Human Behavior, 86, 147–152. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.chb.2018.04.040 DOI: https://doi.org/10.1016/j.chb.2018.04.040

Rahaei, A., & Salehzadeh, R. (2020). Evaluating the impact of psychological entitlement on cyberloafing: the mediating role of perceived organizational justice. Vilakshan - XIMB Journal of Management, 17(1/2), 137–152. https://doi.org/10.1108/xjm-06-2020-0003 DOI: https://doi.org/10.1108/XJM-06-2020-0003

Rahman, Md. H. A., & Karim, D. N. (2022). Organizational justice and organizational citizenship behavior: the mediating role of work engagement. Heliyon, 8(5), e09450. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.heliyon.2022.e09450 DOI: https://doi.org/10.1016/j.heliyon.2022.e09450

Rana, N. P., Slade, E., Kitching, S., & Dwivedi, Y. K. (2019). The IT way of loafing in class: Extending the theory of planned behavior (TPB) to understand students’ cyberslacking intentions. Computers in Human Behavior, 101, 114–123. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.chb.2019.07.022 DOI: https://doi.org/10.1016/j.chb.2019.07.022

Raza, B., Ahmed, A., Zubair, S., & Moueed, A. (2020). Linking workplace deviance and abusive supervision: mediating role of positive psychological capital. International Journal of Organizational Leadership, 8(1), 95–111. https://doi.org/10.33844/ijol.2020.60472 DOI: https://doi.org/10.33844/ijol.2020.60472

Reijseger, G., Schaufeli, W. B., Peeters, M. C., Taris, T. W., van Beek, I., & Ouweneel, E. (2013). Watching the paint dry at work: Psychometric examination of the Dutch Boredom Scale. Anxiety, Stress & Coping, 26(5), 508-525. https://doi.org/10.1080/10615806.2012.720676 DOI: https://doi.org/10.1080/10615806.2012.720676

Sabokro, M., Tavakoli, M., & Malmiri, M. M. (2020). Organizational justice effect on deviant workplace behaviors: Moderating role of moral disengagement. Humanities & Social Sciences Reviews, 8(6), 29–38. https://doi.org/10.18510/hssr.2020.864 DOI: https://doi.org/10.18510/hssr.2020.864

Sampat, B., & Basu, P. A. (2017). Cyberloafing: The di(sguised)gital way of loafing on the job. IUP Journal of Organizational Behavior, 16(1), 19–37.

Saritepeci, M. (2019). Predictors of cyberloafing among high school students: Unauthorized access to school network, metacognitive awareness and smartphone addiction. Education and Information Technologies, 25, 2201–2219. https://doi.org/10.1007/s10639-019-10042-0 DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/s10639-019-10042-0

Seçkin, ?. N. (2018). Boredom at work: A research on public employees. Journal of Business Research - Turk, 10(1), 639–651. https://doi.org/10.20491/isarder.2018.411 DOI: https://doi.org/10.20491/isarder.2018.411

She, Z., & Li, Q. (2023). When too little or too much hurts: Evidence for a curvilinear relationship between cyberloafing and task performance in public organizations. Journal of Business Ethics, 183, 1141-1158. https://doi.org/10.1007/s10551-022-05038-9 DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/s10551-022-05038-9

Shimamura, M., Fukutake, M., Namba, M., & Ogino, T. (2021). The relationship among factors of organizational justice, organizational citizenship behavior, job satisfaction, and ease of work among Japanese nurses. Applied Nursing Research, 16, 151479. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.apnr.2021.151479 DOI: https://doi.org/10.1016/j.apnr.2021.151479

Simsek, A., & Elciyar, K. (2021). An investigation of cyberloafing in a large-scale technology organization from the perspective of the Theory of Interpersonal Behavior. Online Journal of Communication and Media Technologies, 11(2), e202106. https://doi.org/10.30935/ojcmt/10823 DOI: https://doi.org/10.30935/ojcmt/10823

Sonnentag, S., Venz, L., & Casper, A. (2018). Advances in recovery research: What have we learned? What should be done next? Journal of Occupational Health Psychology, 22(3), 365–380. https://doi.org/10.1037/ocp0000079 DOI: https://doi.org/10.1037/ocp0000079

Spanouli, A., Joeri, H., & Dalal, R., S. (2023). Coping with daily boredom: Exploring the relationships of job boredom, counterproductive work behavior, organizational citizenship behavior, and cognitive reappraisal. Motivation and Emotion. Advance online publication. https://doi.org/10.1007/s11031-023-10017-2 DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/s11031-023-10017-2

Spector, P. E., Fox, S., Penney, L. M., Bruursema, K., Goh, A., & Kessler, S. (2006). The dimensionality of counterproductivity: Are all counterproductive behaviors created equal? Journal of Vocational Behavior, 68(3), 446–460. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jvb.2005.10.005 DOI: https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jvb.2005.10.005

Tandon, A., Kaur, P., Ruparel, N., Islam, J. U., & Dhir, A. (2022). Cyberloafing and cyberslacking in the workplace: Systematic literature review of past achievements and future promises. Internet Research, 32(1),55-89. https://doi.org/10.1108/intr-06-2020-0332 DOI: https://doi.org/10.1108/INTR-06-2020-0332

Unterhitzenberger, C., & Moeller, D. (2021). Fair project governance: An organisational justice approach to project governance. International Journal of Project Management, 39(6), 683-696. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.ijproman.2021.06.003 DOI: https://doi.org/10.1016/j.ijproman.2021.06.003

van Hooff, M. L. M., & van Hooft, E. A. J. (2016). Work-related boredom and depressed mood from a daily perspective: the moderating roles of work centrality and need satisfaction. Work & Stress, 30(3), 209–227. https://doi.org/10.1080/02678373.2016.1206151 DOI: https://doi.org/10.1080/02678373.2016.1206151

van Hooft, E. A. J., & van Hooff, M. L. M. (2018). The state of boredom: Frustrating or depressing? Motivation and Emotion, 42(6), 931–946. https://doi.org/10.1007/s11031-018-9710-6 DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/s11031-018-9710-6

Velasco, F., & Jorda, R. (2020). Portrait of boredom among athletes and its implications in sports management: A multi-method approach. Frontiers in Psychology, 11. https://doi.org/10.3389/fpsyg.2020.00831 DOI: https://doi.org/10.3389/fpsyg.2020.00831

Virtanen, M., & Elovainio, M. (2018). Justice at the workplace: A Review. Cambridge Quarterly of Healthcare Ethics, 27(2), 306–315. https://doi.org/10.1017/s0963180117000639 DOI: https://doi.org/10.1017/S0963180117000639

Wu, J., Mei, W., Liu, L., & Ugrin, J. C. (2020). The bright and dark sides of social cyberloafing: Effects on employee mental health in China. Journal of Business Research, 112, 56–64. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jbusres.2020.02.043 DOI: https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jbusres.2020.02.043

Youssef, E. (2018). Relationship between cyberloafing, organizational justice, work engagement and organizational trust among Nurses. World Journal of Nursing Sciences, 4(3), 157–168. https://doi.org/10.5829/idosi.wjns.2018.157.168

Zhong, J., Chen, Y., Yan, J., & Luo, J. (2021). The mixed blessing of cyberloa?ng on innovation performance during the COVID-19 pandemic. Computers in Human Behavior, 126, 106982. DOI: https://doi.org/10.1016/j.chb.2021.106982




How to Cite

Younas , F., Abbas, M., & Qayyum, S. (2023). What Role Perceived Justice Play between Job Boredom and Cyber-loafing? A Mediational Inquiry of Employees at Software Houses. Journal of Professional & Applied Psychology, 4(3), 352–364. https://doi.org/10.52053/jpap.v4i3.218

Most read articles by the same author(s)