Preemployment Honesty Testing: Current Research and Future Directions

By John W. Jones | Go to book overview

professionals but also to psychologists who must determine the usefulness of selection tests. Some psychologists (e.g., Murphy, 1987) have suggested that some psychological tests have limited utility when base rates are low; this argument has been applied to the utility of preemployment integrity tests ( Manhardt , 1989; Murphy, 1989). However, this argument is moot if the base rate is substantial and reflects the selection ratio ( Ash, 1989; Murphy, 1989). The surveys described here found substantial employee deviance base rates for two industries. The finding of substantial base rates of employee theft and counterproductivity suggests that valid and reliable integrity tests that use norm-referenced cutoff scores (cf. Jones, 1989) are useful for the purpose of selecting applicants less likely to engage in dishonest activities on the job. In addition, the establishment of employee deviance base rates and the identification of specific behaviors allow for the application of practical solutions to the costly problems of employee deviance.


REFERENCES

Ash P. ( 1976). "The assessment of honesty in employment". South African Journal of Psychology, 6, 68-79.

Ash P. ( 1989). Establishing cutoff scores for preemployment honesty tests: Professional, psychometric, ethical and legal considerations. Unpublished manuscript.

Food Marketing Institute ( 1989). The food marketing industry speaks, 1989: Loss prevention issues study highlights. Washington, D.C.: The Institute.

Hollinger R., & Clark J. ( 1983). Theft by employees. Lexington, MA: Lexington Books.

Jones J. W. ( 1989). The use of norm-referenced cutoff scores with preemployment honesty tests. Unpublished research note. Park Ridge, IL: London House.

Jones J. W., & Joy D. S. ( 1988). Employee deviance base rates: A summary of empirical research. Unpublished research note. Park Ridge, IL: London House.

Jones J. W., & Slora K. B. ( 1989). "Theft reduction through personnel selection: A control group design in the supermarket industry". Technical Report 30. Park Ridge, IL: London House.

Manhardt P. J. ( 1989). "Base rates and tests of deception. Has 1/0 psychology shot itself in the foot?" Industrial-Organizational Psychologist, 26(2), 48-50.

Murphy K. R. ( 1987). "Detecting infrequent deception". Journal of Applied Psychology, 72, 611-614.

Murphy K. R. ( 1989). "Maybe we should shoot ourselves in the foot: Reply to Manhardt". Industrial-Organizational Psychologist, 26(3), 45-46.

Slora K. B. ( 1988). "Employee theft in the fast food industry: Preliminary base rate information". Technical Report 1. Park Ridge, IL: London House.

Slora K. B., & Boye M. W. ( 1989). "Employee theft in the supermarket industry: Final report of findings". Technical Report 2. Park Ridge, IL: London House.

Tatham R. ( 1974). "Employees' views on theft in retailing". Journal of Retailing, 49-55.

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