Purpose: While prior studies have highlighted the brighter side of technology adoption in improving human resource (HR) functions, the dark side pertaining to the adoption of technology in people management within organizations has gone relatively unnoticed. The current study tries to demystify the dark side of electronic human resource management (e-HRM) by examining banking institutions in India which are believed to have undergone several transformations in recent years. Design/methodology/approach: This study adopts an inductive qualitative approach to examine the research problem. In total, 53 semi-structured interviews were conducted with the employees of eight public sector banks in India. The interviews were transcribed. The analysis of the data was done using the thematic analysis technique. Findings: The findings of the study suggest that there is a stratification of the workplace in banking institutions into digital natives and digital migrants. This social stratification is based on technology adoption and usage which has further created problems in the form of knowledge hiding and perceived workplace conflicts. Practical implications: The findings of the current study have important theoretical and managerial implications. It not only extends the current scholarship on the transtheoretical model of change but it also has strong managerial implications as it highlights the need for the adoption of customized e-HRM training curriculums for the workforce based on their age, education, work experience and expertise. Originality/value: Current research on the dark side of e-HRM is inadequate. Furthermore, the evolution of banking institutions from being a typical bureaucratic organization into a hybrid one has not been examined in the context of e-HRM. © 2021, Emerald Publishing Limited.