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Hållbar polisrekrytering: Teoretiska, metodologiska och praktiska perspektiv på rekrytering och urval
Stockholm University, Faculty of Social Sciences, Department of Psychology. Swedish Defence Recruitment Agency. (Avdelningen för arbets- och organisationspsykologi)ORCID iD: 0000-0002-5570-3833
2015 (Swedish)Doctoral thesis, comprehensive summary (Other academic)Alternative title
Sustainable police recruitment : Theoretical, methodological and practical perspectives on recruitment and selection (English)
Abstract [sv]

Organisationer behöver kvalificerad personal för att fungera effektivt och därmed blir rekrytering en viktig aktivitet. Det är också angeläget att ny personal anpassar sig väl till arbetsförhållandena. Syftet med denna avhandling var att tydliggöra möjligheterna att genom urval bidra till en långsiktigt hållbar rekrytering för organisation, individ och samhälle.

Avhandlingen omfattar tre delstudier och baseras på data från rekrytering av nya poliser i Sverige. En kohort har följts från urvalet av de sökande till polisutbildningen våren 2008 (N = 1 344) över tre uppföljningstillfällen (N = 717–729), nämligen vid slutet av två års polisutbildning, vid slutet av sex månaders aspirantutbildning och vid slutet av det första anställningsåret.

Studie I syftade till att undersöka möjligheterna att välja ut de sökande som är mest lämpade att bli poliser genom att kombinera information från flera urvalsmetoder. Vanligtvis används intervjuer för att i slutet av urvalsprocessen välja ut de mest lämpade kandidaterna. Analyser med flera kriterier på framgångsrik rekrytering (prestation, tillfredsställelse med utbildning respektive arbete, vilja att stanna i yrket och hälsa) vid de tre uppföljningstillfällen, visade att ett alternativt förfarande – att kombinera information från urvalsmetoder som i tidigare steg använts för att sålla bort olämpliga sökande – hade högre prognosförmåga. Det handlade om information från begåvningstest, personlighetstest och konditionstest. Ett sådant förfarande kan också vara mer tillförlitligt och resurseffektivt. Vid urval av poliser bör intervjuer däremot främst ses som ett verktyg för att sålla bort olämpliga kandidater.

Studie II syftade till att öka förståelsen för hur resultat från begåvningstest ska tolkas och användas vid urval. För de flesta yrken, inklusive polisyrket, har begåvningstest visats vara en av de urvalsmetoder som bäst predicerar prestation. Det har förklarats med effekter av generell begåvning. Resultaten från Studie II visade dock att utöver generell begåvning kan också en verbal och kunskapsladdad komponent antas viktig för att predicera prestation. Samtidigt gav studien stöd för att vid urval använda en samlad totalpoäng från begåvningstest.

Studie III syftade till att undersöka den relativa betydelsen av urvalsfaktorer som personlighet och begåvning respektive den psykosociala arbetsmiljön för nya polisers arbetsrelaterade attityder och hälsa efter det första anställningsåret. Studien visade att arbetsmiljöfaktorer, såsom möjligheter till utveckling och återkoppling i arbetet samt rimlig arbets­belastning, var betydligt viktigare än urvalsfaktorer för nya polisers anpassning till arbetsförhållandena i yrket.

Sammanfattningsvis visar föreliggande avhandling att det är meningsfullt att över tid beakta flera kriterier på framgångsrik rekrytering. Den visar också att information från flera urvalsmetoder bör kombineras för att välja ut de mest lämpade kandidaterna. Vidare visar avhandlingen på värdet av att använda verbalt laddade begåvningstest vid urval. Förmågan att predicera framgång i polisyrket med olika urvalsmetoder är dock måttlig. Avhandlingen visar däremot att arbetsförhållandena för ny personal kan ha avgörande betydelse. Det betyder att organisationer som strävar efter hållbar rekrytering bör prioritera både urval och sunda arbetsförhållanden för ny personal. Det gäller inte minst polisorganisationer där kostnaderna för rekrytering är höga.

Abstract [en]

Organizations need qualified personnel to work effectively. Accordingly recruitment is an important organizational activity. Moreover, to attain sustainability for organizations, individuals, and the society, it is assumed important that new personnel adjust well to their working conditions. The aim of this thesis was to investigate the role of selection for long-term sustainable recruitment.

The thesis includes three studies based on data from the recruitment of new police officers in Sweden. A cohort of new police officers was followed from the end of the admittance process to the basic police training program in spring 2008 (N = 1,344) and then at three consecutive follow-ups (N = 717-729), 1) at the end of two years of academy training, 2) at the end of six months of field training, and 3) at the end of the first working year.

Study I aimed to further the understanding of how to select suitable police applicants by using combinations of common selection methods. Analyses of several criteria (performance, satisfaction, occupational retention, and health) at the three follow-ups suggest that combining information from cognitive, personality, and physical fitness tests, that in earlier hurdles have been used to screen out unsuitable applicants, would be useful in identifying the most suitable candidates, while interviews may primarily be considered as a tool for screening out any unsuitable ones.

Study II focused on how to interpret and make use of results from cognitive tests in applied settings such as selection. In most occupations, including the police, cognitive tests are among the most valid predictors of performance. This has been explained by the influence of general intelligence. However, the results from Study II showed that beyond general intelligence, a verbal and knowledge loaded component can be important in predicting performance. Also, the study supported the use of total scores in selection.

Study III aimed to examine the relative importance of selection factors (e.g., personality and general intelligence) and psychosocial working conditions for new police officers’ work-related attitudes and health. The study showed that psychosocial working conditions, such as opportunities for development and feedback as well as a balanced workload, were far more important than selection factors for the new police officers’ adjustment to their occupation.

Taken together, the thesis shows the value of considering several time points and several criteria of successful recruitment. Also, it demonstrates the usefulness of combining information from several selection methods to select the most suitable candidates, along with the value of using verbally loaded cognitive tests in selection. Still, the ability to predict success among police officers by using selection methods remains modest. Additionally, the thesis shows that the working conditions for new personnel can be considered crucial if recruitment is seen as a long-term process that also includes the introduction phase. Accordingly, organizations striving for sustainable recruitment need to focus on developing sound selection processes and providing sound working conditions for their new personnel. This is of particular importance for organizations such as the police, where the costs of recruitment are high.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Stockholm: Psykologiska institutionen, Stockholms universitet , 2015. , 106 p.
Keyword [en]
sustainable recruitment, selection, police, general and crystallized intelligence, bifactor models, personality inventory, physical test, interviews, psychosocial working conditions, performance, job satisfaction, work related attitudes, health
Keyword [sv]
hållbar rekrytering, urval, polis, generell begåvning, kristalliserad begåvning, bifaktormodeller, personlighetstest, fysiska test, intervjuer, arbetsmiljöfaktorer, prestation, arbetstillfredsställelse, arbetsrelaterade attityder, hälsa
National Category
Psychology
Research subject
Psychology
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:su:diva-118983ISBN: 978-91-7649-213-0 (print)OAI: oai:DiVA.org:su-118983DiVA: diva2:842815
Public defence
2015-09-18, David Magnussonsalen (U31), Frescati Hagväg 8, Stockholm, 10:00 (Swedish)
Opponent
Supervisors
Note

At the time of the doctoral defense, the following papers was unpublished and had a status as follows: Paper 3: Manuscript.

Available from: 2015-08-27 Created: 2015-07-22 Last updated: 2015-08-11Bibliographically approved
List of papers
1. Police selection – implications during training and early career
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Police selection – implications during training and early career
2015 (English)In: Policing: an international Journal of Police Strategies and Managment, ISSN 1363-951X, E-ISSN 1758-695X, Vol. 38, no 2, 221-238 p.Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

Purpose – The cost of selecting and training new police officers is high. However, previous researchhas provided limited guidance on how to select the best applicants. The purpose of this paper is toenhance the understanding of the possibilities to select suitable applicants by using combinations offour common categories of selection methods, namely cognitive tests, personality inventories, physicaltests, and rater-based methods (i.e. interviews).

Design/methodology/approach – Using a sample of Swedish police recruits (n¼750) the authorsperformed hierarchical multiple regression analyses, predicting four criteria – performance, satisfaction,retention, and health – at three consecutive time points (after two years of academy training, after sixmonths of field training, and after the first work year).

Findings – No group of selection methods consistently predicted all four criteria at the three timepoints. In most analyses more than one class of selection methods were statistically significant, but thefindings did not support the use of rater-based methods.

Practical implications – Instead of the common praxis of using interviews, the findings suggest analternative praxis. This involves using the remaining information from cognitive tests, personalityinventories, and general fitness tests that had been used in earlier hurdles to screen out unsuitable applicants.

Originality/value – The study extends previous research by including several follow-ups, showingthe value of combining different selection methods, and using alternative criteria of successful policerecruitment (i.e. satisfaction, retention, and health).

Keyword
Performance, Prediction, Retention, Health, Satisfaction, Police selection
National Category
Applied Psychology
Research subject
Psychology
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:su:diva-117697 (URN)10.1108/PIJPSM-11-2014-0119 (DOI)000355951800002 ()
Available from: 2015-06-01 Created: 2015-06-01 Last updated: 2017-12-04Bibliographically approved
2. Use and interpretation of test scores from limited cognitive test batteries: How g plus Gc can equal g
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Use and interpretation of test scores from limited cognitive test batteries: How g plus Gc can equal g
2014 (English)In: Scandinavian Journal of Psychology, ISSN 0036-5564, E-ISSN 1467-9450, Vol. 55, no 5, 399-408 p.Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

Single scores from limited and unbalanced test batteries of cognitive ability can be ambiguous to interpret theoretically. In this study, a limited verbally and knowledge-loaded cognitive test battery, from applicants to the Swedish police academies (N=1,344), was examined to provide foundations for the use and interpretation of test scores. Three measurement models were compared: one single factor model and two bifactor models, which decomposed the variance of the battery into orthogonal components. The models were evaluated by fit indices and omega coefficients, and then applied to the prediction of academic performance. The overall prediction of all models was similar, although specific abilities also were found to provide substantial predictive validity over and above general intelligence (g). The findings provide support for the use of single scores in applied settings (selection), but suggest that it may be more appropriate to interpret such scores as composites of substantive components, and not just as measures of g.

Keyword
Cognitive ability, specific abilities, prediction, academic performance, bifactor models, omega
National Category
Psychology
Research subject
Psychology
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:su:diva-108365 (URN)10.1111/sjop.12140 (DOI)000341908300001 ()
Note

AuthorCount:3;

Available from: 2014-10-24 Created: 2014-10-22 Last updated: 2017-12-05Bibliographically approved
3. Means of Sustainable Recruitment: The Importance of Selection Factors and Psychosocial Working Conditions in Predicting Work and Health Outcomes
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Means of Sustainable Recruitment: The Importance of Selection Factors and Psychosocial Working Conditions in Predicting Work and Health Outcomes
(English)Manuscript (preprint) (Other academic)
Abstract [en]

Research on selection factors often focuses on how to identify suitable candidates, while fewer studies have investigated the long-term effects of such selection factors once the suitable candidates have started working and faced the work situation. The overall aim of the present study was to examine the relative importance of selection factors (general intelligence, personality, and physical fitness), measured during recruitment, and psychosocial working conditions (e.g., workload, job control, and job challenge)for four different outcomes (job satisfaction, organizational citizenship behavior, occupational retention, and health). Data came from a longitudinal study of newly hired police officers in Sweden (N = 508), including information from both the recruitment process and a three-and-a-half year follow-up. Results of hierarchical multiple regression analyses show that psychosocial working conditions were far more important than the selection factors in predicting the four outcomes. The strong effects of psychosocial working conditions for new officers’ work-related attitudes and health suggest that employers, to ensure sustainability, need to focus on activities facilitating the organizational and professional entrance of newcomers by providing a sound work climate.

Keyword
personality and individual differences, organizational culture and climate, demands, health outcomes, work stress models, police
National Category
Psychology
Research subject
Psychology
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:su:diva-118981 (URN)
Available from: 2015-07-22 Created: 2015-07-22 Last updated: 2015-07-23

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