Information seeking about the psychological contract: The impact on newcomers’ evaluations of their employment relationship
AbstractBoth socialization and psychological contract literature demonstrate that the first months of employment are critical for the development of a positive psychological contract with organizational newcomers (e.g. Bauer et al., 1994; Robinson et al., 1994; Thomas & Anderson, 1998). For this reason, it is the objective of this study to explicate newcomers’ psychological contract perceptions and evaluations during the socialization process, using information seeking as the central antecedent variable. Based upon socialization and psychological contract literature, hypotheses are formulated that address the relationship between newcomer information seeking and (1) changes in newcomers’ perceptions of promises exchanged with their employer, and (2) newcomers’ evaluations of their employment relationship one year after entry. To test our hypotheses, a four-wave longitudinal survey among 333 newcomers has been conducted, covering the first year of their new employment relationship. These newcomers, all white-collar level, belonged to six large organizations located in Belgium. Data collections took place at four moments: (T1) at entry, (T2) three months after entry, (T3) six months after entry, and (T4) one year after entry. Results suggest that during the socialization process newcomers change their perceptions of promises but that, contrary to our expectations, these changes are not related to their information-seeking behaviors. On the other hand, and in line with our hypotheses, the frequency of contract-related information seeking during the socialization process significantly affects newcomers’ evaluations of their employment relationship one year after entry. Newcomers who engage more frequently in information seeking make up a more positive evaluation of psychological contract fulfillment and they are also more satisfied with their employment relationship in general. Our findings are discussed in view of the available literature on newcomer socialization and psychological contract development and implications for theories on psychological contract development are drawn.
Download InfoIf you experience problems downloading a file, check if you have the proper application to view it first. In case of further problems read the IDEAS help page. Note that these files are not on the IDEAS site. Please be patient as the files may be large.
Bibliographic InfoPaper provided by Ghent University, Faculty of Economics and Business Administration in its series Working Papers of Faculty of Economics and Business Administration, Ghent University, Belgium with number 04/227.
Length: 32 pages
Date of creation: Feb 2004
Date of revision:
Other versions of this item:
- Ans De Vos & Dirk Buyens, 2004. "Information seeking about the psychological contract: the impact on newcomers' evaluations of their employment relationship," Vlerick Leuven Gent Management School Working Paper Series 2004-01, Vlerick Leuven Gent Management School.
- NEP-ALL-2004-03-14 (All new papers)
Please report citation or reference errors to , or , if you are the registered author of the cited work, log in to your RePEc Author Service profile, click on "citations" and make appropriate adjustments.:
- Lance, Charles E. & Vandenberg, Robert J. & Self, Robin M., 2000. "Latent Growth Models of Individual Change: The Case of Newcomer Adjustment," Organizational Behavior and Human Decision Processes, Elsevier, vol. 83(1), pages 107-140, September.
For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Nathalie Verhaeghe).
If references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.