Defense Date

Summer 7-9-2018

Degree Type





Business Administration

Chair or Co-Chair

Neal Mero

Committee Member or Co-Chair

Rebecca Guidice


Stacy Campbell


In complex organizational environments, managers often rely on intuition to make decisions. Research has found intuition to be helpful when the task is complex; the decision maker is a domain expert; and when the decision environment has a high level of uncertainty, complexity, time pressure, insufficient data, and more than one reasonable solution. However, in employee selection, which is a decision environment that typically has the aforementioned characteristics that are conducive for intuition, scholars discount the usefulness of intuition in favor of more objective, analytical selection methods such as specific aptitude (e.g. sales ability) tests. A reason for the lack of academic support for intuitive hiring is that research in employee selection has not thoroughly examined contextual factors that impact an interviewer’s ability to make an accurate intuitive hiring decision (i.e., one that results in selecting the best candidate out of multiple viable options). The purpose of this study was to explore such factors. More specifically, this study examined the impact of interviewer expertise, cognitive style, and procedural accountability on the accuracy of intuitive hiring decisions when recruiting for complex jobs. The hypotheses were tested via a two-part experimental study that used expert (N = 79) and non-expert (N = 83) interviewer samples. The results demonstrate that, when recruiting for complex jobs, interviewer expertise does increase the accuracy of intuitive hiring decisions. The findings underscore the importance of domain expertise in intuitive decision-making and have a number of theoretical and practical implications to employee selection and the broader field of organizational decision-making.

Available for download on Thursday, January 23, 2020