The role of social identity theory and employer attractiveness in recruiting workers across generations for healthcare organisations: The case of a major private hospital
Archer, C. (2008) The role of social identity theory and employer attractiveness in recruiting workers across generations for healthcare organisations: The case of a major private hospital. In: Engendering Leadership Through Research and Practice Conference, 21 - 24 July 2008, Perth, Western Australia
This paper uses the lens of Social Identity Theory (Ashforth & Mael 1989; Tajfel 1982), from psychology and organisational psychology literature, and the concept of employer branding (Ambler & Barrow 1996; Ewing et al. 2002) from the marketing discipline, to investigate differing perceptions of employer attractiveness across different generations of potential and current employees. This paper presents a case study of a major private hospital in Western Australia which aims to contribute towards a better understanding of how managers can attract workers with increasingly disparate expectations of their working life in a highly “gendered” profession. To date no study has looked at whether a strong employer brand has the same resonance for different individuals within and outside an organisation and across different age groups and levels of experience. The current study is important from an industry perspective for two main reasons. Firstly, the shortage of skilled workers has become a prominent aspect of the Australian economy with calls in the business press for better marketing to prospective employees (Moses 2006). The healthcare industry, not only in Australia but also in many other developed nations, has been particularly badly affected. Secondly, the aging population means that no generation of workers can be ignored in the fight for talent. The demand for trained nurses is increasing at the same time as the supply is declining (Creswell 2005).
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