Wednesday, May 23, 2007

2007 SIOP Conference: Highlights, Part 3

This is the fourth in a series of posts about the 2007 SIOP Conference. In Part 1 I talked about some of the new products out there and in Part 2 and Part 3 I reviewed some of the research that was presented. This post continues that review...

Employment interview structure and discrimination litigation verdicts: A quantitative review

Pool, McEntee, and Gomez analyzed 31 federal court cases from 1990 to 2005 (27 claims of disparate treatment, 7 of adverse impact) to see if there was a relationship between the amount of interview structure and verdicts in employment discrimination cases. Most cases (73%) were brought under Title VII and involved promotional decisions (65%). Race discrimination was the most common allegation (47%) and the vast majority of cases (84%) involved a single plaintiff. For both types of claims, the strongest factors associated with a victory for the defendant (employer side) was having interviewers that were familiar with job requirements and having a guide for conducting the interview. In disparate treatment claims, defendants were more likely to prevail if they also had standardized questions and identical interviews for each applicant. In disparate impact cases, defendants fared better when they had evidence of validity (which makes sense given the burden shifting in these cases). Similar results to Williamson et al.’s 1997 study, but good data to have—see, we’re not just saying standardize those interviews because we’re sadistic HR folks.

Recruiting through the stages: Which recruiting practices predict when?

This meta-analysis by Uggerslev and Fassina of 101 studies looked at the impact that various “recruitment predictors” (e.g., job-person fit, job/organizational attraction) had on various outcome criteria (e.g., job pursuit intention, acceptance intentions). Results depended somewhat on the criterion, but perceived fit between the individual and the job/organization was across-the-board the strongest predictor. The only criterion that matched perceived fit was job characteristics, which tied for predicting acceptance intentions. The strength of the correlations varied, from a low of .15 between perceived fit and job choice to .47 between perceived fit and recommendation intentions. So how do we use this? The authors suggest efforts to increase the appearance of a good fit between the values of goals of applicants and those of the organization may pay off (I'm thinking, say, by focusing on aesthetics and message customization or clearly indicating what you’re looking for).

Meta-analysis on the relationship between Big Five and academic success

Okay, so it's not directly about recruitment or assessment, but it's still interesting. The title pretty much says it all--the presenters (Trapmann, Hell, Hirn, and Schuler) were looking here at the relationship between Big Five personality traits and academic success. Results? As you might expect, it depends what you mean by "success." Neuroticism was related to academic satisfaction (hey, that's why they're neurotic, right?) while Conscientiousness correlated with grades and retention. The other three factors (Extraversion, Openness, and Agreeableness) were not related to success.

That's probably the end of my review of 2007 SIOP presentations, unless I manage to obtain more presentations. Stay tuned for reviews from the upcoming IPMAAC conference!

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