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Future Research

Differences in the legal context for selection across countries present challenges that future research can help address. First, employers of companies with locations in more than one country need to understand how the laws and regulations governing selection in each of the countries where staff are employed. At present the amount of systematic comparative information across individual countries’ legal systems is scant. Additionally, if an employer staffs a location with both local and expatriate staff, from fairness, legal and business perspectives, the employer will need to manage differences in how those employees are treated and will need to be deeply attentive to the culture of the organization. If employees are hired using different systems according to their status, these differences may cultivate disparate organizational cultures. If employees are hired using the same selection system, the employer must ensure that the selection system is appropriate given all the laws, rules and regulations that pertain in each country. The impact of such approaches is at present poorly understood.

Other implications for research focus on differences in the legal context for selection across countries. First, as discussed in this chapter, some countries do not require that tests be validated (Sackett et al., 2010). How do the outcomes of tests that are not validated compare to the outcomes of those that are? Is adverse impact higher or lower for these tests? Does not requiring tests to be validated lead to differences in who is selected and so lead to differences not only in organizational performance, but also in organizational culture.

Considering selection in an international context also opens up the possibility of exploring questions the predominant Western viewpoint in I-O psychology has overlooked.

For example, when thinking about the outcomes of selection systems, research in the US typically focuses on performance outcomes. There may be other outcomes, or other ways of looking at performance, that might be desirable elsewhere. For example, in collectivistic cultures performance outcomes may be more relevant at the team or organizational level rather than at the individual level. Or perhaps issues of fit become a more important outcome depending on the cultural context. Finally, our understanding of validity and adverse impact for types of selection tests is largely grounded in Western research. Measures of personality, cognitive ability, biodata, and so on may have divergent validities in different countries. Research in other countries on outcomes of different kinds of selection measure may highlight marked differences across countries in the strategies that would result in the fairest and most appropriate selection systems.

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