Designing Electronic Feedback - Analyzing the Effects of Social Presence on Perceived Feedback Usefulness
Walter N, Ortbach K, Niehaves B
Feedback interventions, i.e. actions taken by (an) external agent(s) to provide information regarding one's task performance, are an important element in motivating and raising performance. Especially the perceived feedback usefulness determines its positive effects. In today's digitalized world, feedback is more often given electronically, i.e. computer-mediated or even automated by computer systems. Those feedback interventions' effect on perceptions resulting from the difference of communication media is essentially considered by the concept of social presence. However, Information Systems (IS) research lacks a structured evaluation of possible design choices of feedback media, their influence on social presence and subsequent effect on the perceived feedback usefulness. To close this research gap, we conduct a laboratory experiment with 43 participants in which we analyze six different design choices for feedback media. We applied a 2x3 experimental design covering the feedback source (human, non-human feedback) and media richness (text, audio, and video). We show that social presence directly and mediated by the perceived trustworthiness of feedback on simple IT-based tasks impacts perceived feedback usefulness. Our study concludes by outlining opportunities for future research and practical implications for human and non-human (i.e. automated) feedback.
Electronic Feedback; Automated Feedback; Perceived Usefulness; Social Presence Theory