Shoham delaFuente

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Published on January 28, 2008

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Internet Job Searching Among the Unemployed:  Internet Job Searching Among the Unemployed The Role of Internet Self-Efficacy, Job Search Self-Efficacy, and Social Support in the Internet Job Search - Shoshana de la Fuente & Dr. Snunith Shoham - Department of Information Science Bar-Ilan University Changes in Job Searching:  Changes in Job Searching Traditional Job Search Methods:  Traditional Job Search Methods Job Search Methods (Kulik, 1999) Checking the newspaper for want ads Approaching friends or acquaintances Sending out resumes / answering want ads Finding out about career training Contacting organizations to find out about job openings Contacting the employment agency Posting an ad in the newspaper Going to job interviews Infiltration of the Internet :  Infiltration of the Internet Checking the newspaper for want ads Contacting friends or acquaintances Sending out resumes / answering want ads Finding out about career training Contacting organizations to find out about job openings Contacting the national employment agency Posting an ad in the newspaper Going to job interviews Contacting employment/placement agencies Checking the internet for want ads E-mailing friends or acquaintances E-mailing resumes or filling in online forms Contacting organizations by e-mail to find out about job openings Posting an ad on the internet Finding out about career training by searching the internet Contacting employment agencies through their website (Online job interviews) Job Search Intensity:  Job Search Intensity Transition into reemployment relies not only on which search methods were used, but also on: the number of search methods employed and the effort invested in the job search Job search intensity is the term used to refer to the frequency or extent to which individuals engage in specific job search behaviors Job search intensity = number of methods + effort invested Lack of Research on the Subject:  Lack of Research on the Subject Despite the importance of Internet job searching there is a lack of research on the subject. There haven’t been any studies on the factors which influence the decision to use the Internet in one’s job search. There is a lack of research on the different methods of using the Internet for job searching. Research on job searching in the past years included one item on Internet job searching in the questionnaire. There are mostly statistical studies about the phenomenon which center on demographic variables such as age, gender and education. Purpose of the Study:  Purpose of the Study Purpose of the Study:  Purpose of the Study To examine factors which influence unemployed people’s decision to use the Internet in their job search. To incorporate those factors into a model of Internet job searching. Factors Influencing Traditional Job Searching:  Factors Influencing Traditional Job Searching Biographical Variables Age Gender Motive Variables Financial Need Employment commitment Self Evaluation Job Search Self-Efficacy Self Esteem Kanfer, R., Wanberg, C.R., & Kantrowitz, T.M. (2001). Job search and employment: A personality-motivational analysis and meta-analytic review. Personality Variables Neuroticism Extroversion Expectancy Variables Locus of Control Optimism Social Context Social Support Education Seniority The Present Research:  The Present Research Focused on two factors which have been studied in the past and have been found to be connected to both job search and Internet use. These factors are: Social Support Self Efficacy Also demographic variables were examined. Social Support:  Social Support Early research on social support concentrated on social networks and studied size, density and other variables of these (objective) networks. The psychological approach to social support is most interested in the subjective feelings of support an individual has. Perceived Social Support refers to "support the person believes to be available if he or she should need it“. Self Efficacy:  Self Efficacy A central construct in Albert Bandura’s (1977, 1986) Social Cognitive Theory. Definition: “People's judgments of their capabilities to organize and execute courses of action required to attain designated types of performances. It is concerned not with the skills one has but with judgments of what one can do with whatever skills one possesses” (Bandura, 1986, p. 391). Bandura, A. (1986). Social Foundations of Thought and Action: A Social Cognitive Theory. Englewood Cliffs, N.J.: Prentice-Hall. Task Specific Self Efficacy:  Task Specific Self Efficacy The original concept was of general self-efficacy. This construct tends to be generalized to diverse situations. However Bandura himself, among other researchers, stressed the importance of developing specific self-efficacy measures. These measures have a higher predictive ability for specific tasks than general self-efficacy. Slide14:  Internet Job Search Self Efficacy (SE) Hypotheses & Model:  Hypotheses & Model Internet Self Efficacy (ISE):  Internet Self Efficacy (ISE) Definition: a judgment of one's ability to use the Internet and perform online. It does not refer to one’s Internet use in the past, but rather to one’s assessment of what s/he could do online at present or in the future Higher levels of ISE are related to greater Internet use. Hypothesis #1: Internet self-efficacy will be positively correlated with Internet use. Hypothesis #2: Internet self-efficacy will be positively correlated with Internet job search intensity among job searchers. The Research Model:  The Research Model Job Search Self Efficacy (JSSE):  Job Search Self Efficacy (JSSE) Definition: one’s confidence in his/her ability to successfully engage in the various tasks which comprise the job search process. JSSE has a major influence on whether or not one actively engages in a job search The higher one’s JSSE, the more effort s/he will put into his/her job search. A positive relation was found between JSSE and both job searching and re-employment among unemployed people. Hypothesis #3: Job search self-efficacy will be positively related to traditional job search intensity. Hypothesis #4: Job search self-efficacy will be positively related to Internet job search intensity. The Research Model:  The Research Model Internet Job Search Internet Use Traditional Job Search Internet Self-Efficacy Social Support and the Job Search:  Social Support and the Job Search Definition: "feelings that others are available to provide comfort, esteem, assistance, and information or advice" (Kraut, Kiesler, Boneva, et al., 2002, p. 58). Previous research found a positive relation between social support and job search intensity. Hypothesis #5: Social support will be positively correlated to traditional job search intensity. Hypothesis #6: Social support will be positively correlated to Internet job search intensity. The Research Model:  The Research Model Internet Use Traditional Job Search Internet Self-Efficacy Job Search Self-Efficacy Social Support and Internet Use:  Social Support and Internet Use The relationship between Internet and social support is not clear cut. Some researchers claim that increased Internet use leads to social seclusion. Greater Internet use was found to lead to higher perceived social support through the use of e-mail. The more e-mails people send to and receive from people they know, the higher their perceived social support. This research can be supported by other findings that e-mail use intensifies connections with family and friends and significantly increases communications with friends. Hypothesis #7: Internet use will be positively related to social support with e-mail use serving as an intermediary. Hypothesis #8: Internet job search intensity will be positively related to e-mail use. The Research Model:  The Research Model Internet Use Traditional Job Search Internet Self-Efficacy Job Search Self-Efficacy Social Support Method:  Method Sample: Population: Unemployed Jewish Israelis who are eligible for unemployment insurance and are searching for a job. Sample: The sample consisted of 371 participants, all of whom were unemployed and searching for a job. The participants were approached at 17 different unemployment agencies across Israel. Measures: A questionnaire, which included demographic variables, measures of JSSE and ISE, a measure of perceived social support, measures of email and Internet use, and questions pertaining to job search methods, both traditional and online. Procedure: Questionnaires were distributed for individuals to fill out. Results:  Results Six out of the eight hypotheses, dealing with relations between constructs, were confirmed. The two hypotheses regarding social support and job searching – traditional and through the Internet – were not confirmed. Spousal support displayed the relations with job searching which were predicted for social support. A new model was constructed based on the study’s results. The New Model:  The New Model Internet Use Traditional Job Search Internet Self-Efficacy Job Search Self-Efficacy Spousal Support The Internet Job Searcher:  The Internet Job Searcher 73% reported that they used the Internet to look for a job. Average Internet job search intensity for the whole sample was 2.3 from a scale of one to five. The average traditional job search intensity was 3.2 from a scale of one to five. The Internet job searcher seems to be: An educated male of any age With home Internet access With high Internet self-efficacy, Internet use and e-mail use Who invests more time and effort on traditional job searching. The End:  The End

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