Introduction This paper builds on previous research by the author and describes the development and validation of a new measure of the psychological contract of safety. The psychological contract of safety is defined as the beliefs of individuals about reciprocal safety obligations inferred from implicit and explicit promises.
Method A psychological contract is established when an individual believes that perceived employer and employee safety obligations are contingent on each other. A pilot test of the measure is first undertaken with participants from three different occupations: nurses, construction workers, and meat processing workers (N = 99). Item analysis is used to refine the measure and provide initial validation of the scale. A larger validation study is then conducted with a participant sample of health care workers (N = 424) to further refine the measure and to determine the psychometric properties of the scale.
Results Item and correlational analyses produced the final employer and employee obligations scales, consisting of 21 and 17 items, respectively. Factor analyses identified two underlying dimensions in each scale comparable to that previously established in the organizational literature. These transactional and relational-type obligations provided construct validity of the scale. Internal consistency ratings using Cronbach's alpha found the components of the psychological contract of safety measure to be reliable.
Impact on Industry The refined and validated psychological contract of safety measure will allow investigation of the positive and negative outcomes associated with fulfilment and breach of the psychological contract of safety in future research.
Field of Research
170107 Industrial and Organisational Psychology
Socio Economic Objective
970117 Expanding Knowledge in Psychology and Cognitive Sciences