The effect of career competencies on young professionals’ perceived employability affected by career shocks

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Individuals cannot rely on life time employment at one single company due to the increased flexibility in the labor market (Kinnunen et al., 2011). Therefore, employability becomes important for both young professionals and individual companies, especially for HR-departments (Park et al., 2022). This research investigates the association between career competencies and perceived employability and checks if there exists a moderating effect for positively and negatively valenced career shocks. The Conservation of Resources theory of Hobfoll (2001) is used in this research to explain the effect of career competencies on perceived employability. This is because career competencies can be seen as resources as defined within the Conservation of Resources theory. Futhermore, according to COR a career shock has an effect on the personal resources of an individual which is expected to be positive if an individual experiences a positively valenced career shock and therefore will have a higher perceived employability. In addition to that if an individual experience a negatively valenced career shock, the personal resources will be affected which results in a lower perceived employability. To test the established hypotheses, primary data was gathered through an online survey with 136 respondents, people between 20-35 years of age. The results were not consistent with our expectations, as the outcomes of the statistical analyses found only one significant result, which is the association between career competencies and perceived employability. Futhermore, it was expected that positively or negatively valenced career shocks would have a moderating effect on the association between career competencies and perceived employability, but no significant results were found.
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