Purpose – The purpose of this paper is to examine the effects of the commitment- and control-approaches on the use of competency management, and to investigate whether attitude, subjective norm and perceived behavioural control mediate these effects. Design/methodology/approach – In Study 1, using a survey, employees indicated whether their organization adopted a commitment- or a control-approach towards competency management. Moreover, they rated their own attitude, subjective norm, perceived behavioural control, and behaviour. In Study 2 a scenario experimentwas conducted in which the authors manipulated the commitment- and control-approaches towards competency management in order to establish causal relations. Findings – Results consistently showed that the use of competency management is higher within a commitment- than within a control-approach. Furthermore, attitude and perceived behavioural control were found to mediate the relationship between the commitment-approach and the use of competency management. Research limitations/implications – Future research should include other organizational members, for example (line) managers, to create future insight in the effects of commitment- and control-approaches on the use of competency management. Practical implications – The results of the studies highlight that a commitment-oriented approach increases the use of competency management by employees and that a positive employee attitude and perceived behavioural control are of considerable importance when increasing the use of competency management is an organization’s primary goal. Originality/value – The paper gives insight in how to persuade and stimulate employees to use competency management more frequently.
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