EAWOP small group meeting Recruitment and Assessment 2.0: Trends, Developments, and challenges edition:3 location:Gent date:27-29 August 2014
Recruitment literature has taken a holistic approach to the effectiveness of job ad characteristics, in terms of attracting job seekers and persuading them to apply. We question this approach by hypothesizing differential effects of intrinsic job ad characteristics (such as learning opportunities and agreeable team work) and extrinsic job ad characteristics (such as money and prestige). Based on Self-Determination Theory (Deci & Ryan, 2000), we propose that intrinsic job ad characteristics are universally more effective than extrinsic job ad characteristics, as they signal a work environment in which basic psychological needs can be satisfied. In line with Person-Job Fit Theory (Kristof-Brown, Zimmerman & Johnson, 2005), in contrast, we argue that intrinsic job ad characteristics mostly appeal to job seekers pursuing intrinsic personal work values, as they signal a work environment supporting this particular pursuit of values. Similarly, we expect extrinsic job ad characteristics to attract mostly job seekers pursuing extrinsic values. A study among 93 business administration students however leaves most of our hypotheses unsupported. Contrary to expectations, job seekers find extrinsic job ad characteristics to be more attractive than intrinsic job ad characteristics, and a job seeker’s intrinsic value orientation is unrelated to the attractiveness of intrinsic job ad characteristics. Partly supporting the fit hypothesis, however, a job seeker’s extrinsic value orientation does increase the attractiveness of extrinsic job ad characteristics.