An examination of the construct and concurrent validity of an organizational citizenship scale

Jana Diane Fallon

Abstract

Practitioners routinely use pre-employment assessments to identify individuals who exhibit characteristics that are indicative of successful job-performance. An extensive body of personnel-selection literature points to the effectiveness of such assessments for predicting important work behaviors. Increasingly, organizations are striving to hire good corporate citizens. Good corporate citizens support the organization through voluntary productive work behaviors. Although personality measures have been widely examined in the literature, the potential of organizational citizenship (OC) as a personnel selection tool remains untapped. The purpose of the current study was to explore the viability of a measure that was designed to assess organizational citizenship as a selection tool, through the examination of its construct validity. This study revealed that the measure that was designed to assess OC consisted of multiple factors, which did not closely align with the theorized constructs: Helping and Cooperating; Endorsing, Supporting, and Defending Organizational Objectives; Following Rules and Procedures; Persisting with Enthusiasm and Extra Effort; and Volunteering. The measure had weak psychometric properties, and the research failed to provide the construct validity evidence needed to proceed with subsequent criterion-related validity analyses. The measure designed to assess OC had some weak to moderate positive correlations with conscientiousness, extraversion, customer service, agreeableness, and achievement orientation. It generally had nonsignificant correlations with cognitive ability. Contrary to the hypothesis, the measure designed to assess OC had a moderate negative correlation with Neuroticism. Taken together, these findings suggest that this is a measure that is in need of major reconstruction. The scale's low internal consistency, failure to factor analyze into the theoretical dimensions, and moderate test-retest reliability, suggest that this particular measurement tool is psychometrically flawed and therefore extremely limited in its usefulness, in practice, as well as for furthering theory on OC as a predictor. Therefore, additional refinement of the predictor of organizational citizenship, and its measurement, are warranted.