Taking a self-regulatory perspective, we develop a mediated moderation model explaining how within-person changes in job search efficacy and chronic regulatory focus interactively affect the number of job interview offers and whether job search effort mediates the cross-level interactive effects. A sample of 184 graduating college students provided monthly reports of their job search activities over a period of 8 months. Findings supported the hypothesized relationships. Specifically, at the within-person level, job search efficacy was positively related with the number of interview offers for job seekers with strong prevention focus and negatively related with the number of interview offers for job seekers with strong promotion focus. Results show that job search effort mediated the moderated relationships. Findings enhance understandings of the complex self-regulatory processes underlying job search.
Sun, S., Song, Z. L., & Lim, V. K. G. (2013). Dynamics of the job search process: Developing and testing a mediated moderation model. Journal of Applied Psychology, 98(5), 771-784. https://doi.org/10.1037/a0033606