Business Administration Seminar: Edwin van Hooft

14-05-2019 from 16:00 to 17:00
classroom 1.4, campus Tweekerken, building Hoveniersberg (1st floor), Tweekerkenstraat 2, 9000 Gent
Prof. dr. Greet Van Hoye
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Dear colleagues,


I would like to invite you to the External Business Administration Seminar by Edwin van Hooft (University of Amsterdam), which will take place on Tuesday May 14 from 16:00 to 17:00 in Classroom 1.4 (Campus Tweekerken, Tweekerkenstraat 2, Ghent; building Hoveniersberg, first floor).


Job search and employment success from a self-regulatory perspective: A meta-analysis and a multi-wave study”



Google “job search” and you will get over 5 billion hits, and Amazon lists over 7,000 popular books on the topic of job search. This strong interest in job search stems from the fact that most adults engage in a job search at some point in their life, for example when graduating school, when losing one’s job due to a layoff, or when desiring a job change. Finding a suitable job is of utmost importance, not only because employment serves the manifest function of being able to pay the bills, but also because of its more latent functions such as providing meaning and structure, social involvement, status and identity, and personal development and career growth. Despite its importance, job search and finding a job is not always intuitive or easy. In-depth understanding of the factors that play a role in a successful job search is therefore warranted.
In 2001, Kanfer, Wanberg, and Kantrowitz provided a personality-motivational analysis and quantitative review of the job-search literature. Research on job search has burgeoned since 2000, bringing about important new developments in theory, conceptualization, and measurement (e.g., see Klehe & Van Hooft, 2018). These developments suggest four reasons for reconsidering and extending prior meta-analytic findings: (a) reconsideration of whether job search is important for employment success, (b) providing a comprehensive picture on how self-regulatory constructs can be classified, and how they relate to job search and employment success, (c) providing resolution on if and how employment quality is predicted by job-search constructs, and (d) if changes in job-search practices due to the rise of the internet have altered the underlying psychological processes as compared to the pre-internet era.
We define job search as a goal-directed, motivational, and self-regulatory process, and conducted a quantitative synthesis of the literature to test the relationships between job-search self-regulation, job-search behavior, and employment success outcomes. We also quantitatively reviewed key antecedents (i.e., personality, attitudinal factors, and contextual variables). The literature search resulted in 304 independent samples (N = 151,623), with 70.1% coming from articles published in 2001 or later. In the seminar I will present: (a) the findings from our meta-analyses on the role of job-search intensity and quality in predicting employment success outcomes (i.e., number of job interviews, number of job offers, employment status, and employment quality), (b) the pathways through which self-regulation predicts employment success, (c) the findings from our meta-analyses on the predictors of employment quality, and (d) the results of the moderator analyses regarding publication year and job-seeker type.
While extant theory has characterized job search as a dynamic, open-loop, self-regulatory learning process, implying that job search thoughts and behaviors are cyclically adapted towards the attainment of an employment goal (e.g., Kanfer et al., 2001; Noordzij et al., 2013; Van Hooft & Noordzij, 2009; Van Hooft, Wanberg, & Van Hoye, 2013; Wanberg, Basbug, Van Hooft, & Samtani, 2012; Wanberg, Zhu, & Van Hooft, 2010), our quantitative review indicated that a major gap in the literature was the lack of studies focused on uncovering when and how people adapt or change their job search behaviors other than its intensity, and what factors evoke such adaptations. We therefore designed a study to increase our insight into the dynamics of the job search process, with a particular focus on adaptations in the strategies that job seekers employ during their job search (i.e., exploratory, focused, or haphazard search strategies). Employing a six-week repeated measures design in a sample of job seekers registered at Monsterboard (N = 1,207), we examined: (a) the self-regulatory predictors (i.e., goal clarity, goal commitment, self-efficacy) and outcomes (i.e., progress and reflection) of search strategy use over time, (b) if and how people change their strategies during the job-search process, (c) which self-regulatory variables explain such changes in job search strategies, and (d) what the outcomes are of these changes. In the seminar I will present the findings of the study.



Edwin A. J. van Hooft is an Associate Professor of Work & Organizational Psychology and Director of the Graduate School of Psychology at the University of Amsterdam, the Netherlands. He received his PhD from the VU University Amsterdam in 2004, based on a series of field studies on group differences in the theory of planned behavior in predicting job-search behavior. His current research program focuses on motivation and self-regulation processes among individuals and groups. Specific topics include motivation and self-regulation during job search and reemployment, achievement goal orientation, the role of affect in the self-regulation process, work-related boredom, and self-regulatory mechanisms in behavioral procrastination. His work has appeared in journals such as Journal of Applied Psychology, Personnel Psychology, Journal of Vocational Behavior, Journal of Occupational and Health Psychology, Journal of Occupational and Organizational Psychology, and Academy of Management Journal. For this work he received multiple grants and awards (e.g., VENI-grant and ORA-grant from the Netherlands Organization for Scientific Research; HRM Scholarly Achievement Award), and he collaborated with various organizational partners (e.g., employment agencies, counseling firms, governmental institutions). He edited the Oxford Handbook on Job Loss and Job Search, and serves in the editorial boards of Journal of Applied Psychology, Personnel Psychology, Organizational Psychology Review, and Gedrag & Organisatie. For more information see