University of Worcester Worcester Research and Publications

Using Social Capital to Secure Employment – Wasta in the Jordanian Banking Sector

Ali, Sa'ad, Kirk, S. and Riaden, A. (2017) Using Social Capital to Secure Employment – Wasta in the Jordanian Banking Sector. In: The British Academy of Management conference: Re-connecting management research with the disciplines: Shaping the research with the social sciences, 5-7 September 2017, University of Warwick. ISSN 978-0-9956413-0-3

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This paper set out to address the gap in our knowledge on how social capital impacts the employee selection process in banks operating in Jordan. Bonding and bridging social capital are used to explore the prevalent practice of ‘wasta’ in Jordan. the preliminary analysis of 17 in-depth interviews highlights two uses of wasta in employee selection. Namely, the use of wasta as a guide for employers in the decision to hire and the use of wasta as a pressure mechanism by candidates to attain employment in specific organisations. Previous research often associates wasta with the negative outcomes of not adhering to merit-based selection such as reduced workforce diversity, lack of employee engagement, and the lost opportunity cost from hiring unqualified candidates based their social connections. However, the interviewees signpost some positive uses of wasta such as its ability to confirm information about the candidate and his/ her fit with organisation’s culture prior to employment.

Item Type: Conference or Workshop Item (Paper)
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Uncontrolled Discrete Keywords: social capital, employment, Jordanian banking sector, employee selection process, banks
Subjects: H Social Sciences > H Social Sciences (General)
Divisions: College of Business, Psychology and Sport > Worcester Business School
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Depositing User: Saad Ali
Date Deposited: 28 Sep 2017 13:39
Last Modified: 17 Jun 2020 17:19

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