Employee acceptance of wearable technology in the workplace

Jesse V. Jacobs, Lawrence J. Hettinger, Yueng Hsiang Huang, Susan Jeffries, Mary F. Lesch, Lucinda A. Simmons, Santosh K. Verma, Joanna L. Willetts

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

70 Scopus citations


Wearable technology has many industrial applications. Optimal use adherence and outcomes largely depend on employee acceptance of the technology. This study determined factors that predict employee acceptance of wearables. An online survey of 1273 employed adults asked about demographics, job and organizational characteristics, experience with and beliefs about wearables, and willingness to use wearables. Use cases focused on workplace safety elicited the highest acceptance. An employee's performance expectancy and their organizational safety climate were common predictors of acceptance across use cases. Positive past experiences coincided with involving employees in choosing the device and adequately informing them about data use. Organizations intending to implement wearable technology should (a) focus its use on improving workplace safety, (b) advance a positive safety climate, (c) ensure sufficient evidence to support employees’ beliefs that the wearable will meet its objective, and (d) involve and inform employees in the process of selecting and implementing wearable technology.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)148-156
Number of pages9
JournalApplied Ergonomics
StatePublished - Jul 2019


  • Industrial workplace ergonomics
  • Safety climate
  • Technology acceptance
  • Wearable technology
  • Work measurement

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Human Factors and Ergonomics
  • Physical Therapy, Sports Therapy and Rehabilitation
  • Safety, Risk, Reliability and Quality
  • Engineering (miscellaneous)


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