Join the final Research Seminar of the series with Professor Julie Hancock, University of North Texas.
Paper Title: Network Influences on Employee Labor Market Perceptions and Job Search
Julie Hancock is an Associate Professor of Management and the Director of The People Center in the G. Brint Ryan College of Business at the University of North Texas. She holds a Ph.D. in Business Administration from the University of Memphis and held an academic appointment at Rutgers University, Camden prior to joining UNT in 2015. Her primary research interests include the flow of people in organizations, collective turnover, perceived organizational support, and pro-social rule breaking. Her work on these topics has been published in Journal of Management, Journal of Organizational Behavior, Human Relations, Employee Relations and Human Resource Management Review.
Julie has been a member of the Academy of Management since 2007 and has served in a variety of roles during this time, including acting as a reviewer, presenter, discussant, and session chair for the HR Division over the last 15 years, among other roles. When Julie isn’t researching, teaching, or volunteering, she enjoys traveling the world and spending time with her husband and two offspring.REGISTER HERE
Employee “water cooler conversations” with coworkers, as well as interpersonal interactions outside of one’s employing organization, are key sources of information about the labor market. Although the value of network ties for job search is well recognized, research to date has tended to focus on how network ties relate to job search outcomes, providing little insight into what types of network ties offer information that shape job seeker perceptions and behaviors throughout the job search process. Drawing from Steel’s (2002) evolutionary search model and social network research, we assert that different types of network ties—those that are weak versus strong and those internal versus external to the organization—offer different types of labor market information, which impacts employees’ labor market perceptions, propensity to search for employment, and job search effectiveness.
Using a time-separated research design in a sample of healthcare workers, we find that weak external ties (WETs) are associated with more optimistic perceptions of the labor market, and increased marketability and early-stage job search, and strong external ties (SETs) are associated with greater marketability and propensity to engage in early-stage job search. Strong internal ties (SITs) have dual, opposing influences on employee job search: SITs are associated with less early-stage job search, but they are also associated with increased concrete prospects when employees are more actively seeking alternative employment. Taken together, this study provides more nuanced insights into how network ties influence employee job search process, clarifying ambiguities in this literature.REGISTER HERE