Perceived employability of Hong Kong employees : its antecedents, moderator and outcomes

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Journal article

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Personnel Review

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Emerald Publishing Limited


Self-efficacy, Work engagement, Quantitative, Perceived employability, Job insecurity, Job satisfaction, Work volition


Purpose: The purpose of this paper is to develop and test a model that investigates volition and self-efficacy as antecedents, and work engagement and job satisfaction as outcomes of perceived employability. It also evaluates the moderating role of job insecurity on the relationships between perceived employability and the two employee outcomes.

Design/methodology/approach: The data were collected via a random sampling survey on living conditions of Hong Kong citizens in 2014. The final sample consists of 414 Chinese working adults. The authors employ structural equation modeling and moderated regression analysis to test the hypotheses.

Findings: Results show that volition and self-efficacy are positively related to perceived employability, and perceived employability in turn positively relates to work engagement and job satisfaction. Besides, perceived employability fully mediates the effect of volition and partially mediates the effect of self-efficacy, on the two outcome variables. The authors also find that job insecurity acts as a significant moderator on the relationships between perceived employability and the outcomes.

Research limitations/implications – Limitations of this study include self-reported data, cross-sectional research design, and selected respondents with a large proportion of recent immigrants. By delineating the process through which perceived employability affects employees’ work engagement and job satisfaction, this study provides some implications for research and practice.

Originality/value: This study introduces a conceptual model that includes both antecedents and consequences of perceived employability. It examines the relationships among volition, perceived employability, and work engagement, which has not been studied before. By identifying job insecurity as an important moderator, it reveals a boundary condition of perceived employability on employee outcomes.



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Recommended Citation

Ngo, H.-Y., Liu, H. & Cheung, F. (2017). Perceived employability of Hong Kong employees: Its antecedents, moderator and outcomes. Personnel Review, 46(1), 17-35. doi: 10.1108/PR-01-2015-0015