Date of Award

Spring 3-1-2014

Document Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Science in Information Systems


Business and Information Systems

First Advisor

Amit Deokar

Second Advisor

Meg Murray

Third Advisor

Surendra Sarnikar

Fourth Advisor

John Nelson


Unified Communications (UC) is a combination of communication tools used to enhance the user experience and facilitate communications over several different mediums. UC is a collaborative technology that allows users to send instant messages, provide live video footage, and switch from instant messaging to live talk and conference real time with multiple users regardless of location. The ease of use of the tool provides support for collaboration and exhibits the potential to increase productivity for those working in teams that may cross various geographical regions. Through case study research at Hewlett Packard Company (HP) this research explores how the use of UC helps individuals create and build relationships with team members, and how such relationship building impacts perceived productivity. Interview data was analyzed from 30 participants within two organizational segments of HP. To validate findings from the interviews, email documents from within HP were also reviewed to determine if the impact expected and noted in the documents was consistent with the results of the case study. These results suggest that the use of UC tools has a direct impact on relationship building in both virtual and co-located teams where employees work in the same physical office space. UC provides an ease of communication therefore motivating more communication, and because of their enhanced relationships, users feel more productive. The contributions of this study will allow organizations to make better decisions regarding their investments in efficient communication technologies and gain a better understanding of the importance of interpersonal relationships within a global environment.