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EMAC 2023 Annual

Micro-level and Macro-level Contingencies Influencing the Effect of Salespeople’s Digital Adoption on Salesperson Performance

Published: May 24, 2023


Roland Kassemeier, University of Warwick; Berenika Hengstebeck, University of Bochum; Jan Wieseke, University of Bochum


Although firms invest great efforts in salespeople’s adoption of digital technologies, many of the investments into becoming more digital fail. While previous research predominantly investigated drivers of salespeople’s adoption of digital technologies, it accounted only scarcely for heterogeneity in its effect on salesperson performance. The main goal of this study is to explore heterogeneity in the effect of salespeople’s digital adoption on salesperson performance. The authors expect this effect to depend on an industry’s digital maturity, salespeople’s sales task variety, and salespeople’s consultative selling expertise. Results of a multilevel modeling approach of a large-scale dataset comprising data from 22,560 salespeople from 78 firms from 17 industries reveal that the positive impact of salespeople’s digital adoption does not always hold true. The study provides actionable guidance on when fostering salespeople’s digital adoption improves performance and when it does not.