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date: 28 July 2021

Abstract and Keywords

This chapter examines possible opportunities to enhance the capacity of decision makers to take account of evidence. It focuses on one of the most typical sources of evidence—the test-validation paradigm that underpins much staffing research—indicating several directions in which to extend the paradigm to more clearly inform decisions that depend on validation evidence. The chapter takes as its departure the need to know more about the mental models with which leaders, managers, and employees may approach the staffing process and decisions. In particular, it shows that staffing decisions bear a striking similarity to several logical frameworks that are already well-accepted by organizational leaders (performance tolerances, supply-chain, and portfolio theory). Portraying the validation paradigm through these lenses reveals potential explanations for decision makers’ failure to adopt options supported by validation evidence, ways to extend the validation paradigm to better account for situational realities, and thus ways to potentially enhance decision-maker understanding and use of validation evidence. “Retooling” the validation paradigm within such frameworks may provide valuable avenues to bridge the gap between validation evidence and staffing decisions, create more accessible staffing mental models for organization leaders, uncover fruitful new research questions, and better articulate the role and value of validation evidence.

Keywords: evidence-based management, staffing, assessment, validation, mental models, retooling, supply chain, risk management

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