Preemployment Honesty Testing: Current Research and Future Directions

By John W. Jones | Go to book overview
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SUMMARY

The Tenure scale was constructed to be content valid. Studies 1 and 2 documented statistically significant relationships between Tenure scale scores and job-related criteria. High scorers on the Tenure scale were typically longer-tenure employees and above-average performers, with lower absenteeism rates. Low scorers were typically shorter-tenure employees and below-average performers, with higher absenteeism rates. Study 3 showed that psychological assessment programs, which incorporate the Tenure scale, can result in significant reductions in turnover when implemented for preemployment selection. Study 3 also showed that these assessment programs are fair to protected groups and capable of generating significant returns on investment.

The Tenure scale appears capable of predicting a variety of different employee withdrawal behaviors. Other researchers are starting to cross-validate these findings (e.g., Joy et al., 1989). For example, Behrens & Orban ( 1989) examined the relationship between Tenure scale scores and job stress using a sample of approximately 130 drugstore job applicants. He found that higher scorers on the Tenure scale (i.e., low turnover risk) reported significantly less job burnout (r = -.65 p < .001) and reliably more stress coping skills (r = .55, p < .001). It can be postulated that high scorers on the Tenure scale would therefore be less likely to quit a job since they are able to cope with stressful job demands. Behrens's results support the construct validity of the Tenure scale.

Nerad and Orban ( 1989a) administered the Tenure scale to 66 incumbent managers from a national restaurant chain. They found a statistically significant relationship between Tenure scale scores and actual job tenure (r = .43, p < .05). Loyal and committed managers who were employed the longest at the restaurant had attitudes that put them at low risk to quit their company. Nerad and Orban also found that Tenure scale scores correlated significantly with how interested managers were in their job (r = .28, p < .05) and how energized they were to complete their jobs in a prompt and consistent manner (r = .28, p < .05). These findings were replicated in another construct validity study ( Nerad & Orban, 1989b) in which the Tenure scale was administered to a sample of 164 managers from a chain of home improvement stores. Significant results indicated that higher scorers on the Tenure scale also scored higher on a measure of job interest and motivation (r = .17; p < .05). These construct validity coefficients support the notion that high scorers on the Tenure scale are more committed to their jobs, as reflected in self-reports of high job interest and high enthusiasm and energy levels.

Further research is warranted with the Tenure scale. Predictive validity studies are especially needed since the Tenure scale has obvious relevance to personnel selection. Study 3 showed that the scale has no adverse impact against any sex or race groups and should therefore comply with EEOC guidelines. Standardized measures of turnover risk can conceivably provide corporations with information that will help them screen in applicants at lowest risk to quit a job prematurely.

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Preemployment Honesty Testing: Current Research and Future Directions
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