Employee time theft: Conceptualization, measure development, and validation Academic Article uri icon


  • AbstractDespite its prevalence, high cost, and practical import, employee time theft has received scant research attention. To facilitate future scholarship on this important topic, the present research endeavors to clarify the conceptualization of time theft and advance understanding regarding the range of its behavioral manifestations, develop and validate an instrument to assess time theft, and provide preliminary insights into its nomological net. Results, gathered across nine samples of employees who are paid on an hourly wage scale, suggest that time theft is a multidimensional formative construct, is distinct from other deviant work behaviors (e.g., withdrawal, property theft), and is influenced by instrumental (e.g., pay satisfaction) and expressive motives (e.g., boredom). Finally, time theft explained incremental variance in criterion variables (e.g., receipt or enactment of interpersonal help) controlling for the effects of other discrete manifestations of deviance (e.g., withdrawal). Implications for future scholarship and managerial practice are discussed.

published proceedings


altmetric score

  • 0.5

author list (cited authors)

  • Harold, C. M., Hu, B., & Koopman, J.

citation count

  • 7

complete list of authors

  • Harold, Crystal M||Hu, Biyun||Koopman, Joel

publication date

  • June 2022