What influences the relationship between workplace bullying and employee well-being? A systematic review of moderators

Samuel Farley, Daniella Mokhtar, Kara Ng, Karen Niven

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Researchers have consistently shown the detrimental effects that workplace bullying has on employee well-being. While there have been many studies examining moderating factors that worsen or mitigate bullying’s effects, the field lacks a common theoretical framework to integrate and explain these diverse moderators. The aim of this systematic review is to identify, categorise, and evaluate variables that have been tested as moderators of the relationship between workplace bullying and well-being using the job demands resources model. Searches of the literature were carried out in the PsycINFO, Web of Science and Scopus databases. Sixty-eight studies met the inclusion criteria, which reported on 209 tests of moderation. Using an established taxonomy, the moderators were categorised into home demands/resources (n = 2), personal demands/resources (n = 136), job demands/resources (n = 4), social demands/resources (n = 24), and organisational demands/resources (n = 43). Analysis revealed that social resources, such as co-worker support, and organisational resources, such as supportive organisational climates, consistently buffered the harmful effects of bullying. In contrast, personal resources had little influence as moderators. Further cross-cultural and longitudinal research is needed to understand whether the influence of these moderators extends across time and different cultural contexts.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)345-372
Number of pages28
JournalWork and Stress
Issue number3
Early online date23 Jan 2023
Publication statusPublished - 23 Jan 2023


  • Workplace bullying
  • moderators
  • systematic review
  • well-being


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