What is I-O Psychology?

What is I-O Psychology?

Industrial and Organizational (I-O) psychology is an area of scientific study that addresses psychological concepts and principles in the workplace. It applies evidence-based research in solving organizational issues of all kinds, as opposed to relying on anecdotes, hearsay, and the latest management trends. 

It is a diverse field with various specialty areas of investigation, including basic personnel functions, psychological processes that underlie employee behavior in workplace settings, group processes at work, and the conditions of work. The knowledge and understanding gained from research are put to practical use as they are applied to issues of critical relevance in organizations. Key issues include selection, training, assessment, compensation, leadership, work attitudes, and organizational development. 

What Do I-O Psychologists Do?

The diverse nature of I-O psychology gives I-O psychologists the opportunity to do many different jobs in a wide variety of settings. Some I-O psychologists work in business settings dealing with worker productivity, employee training and assessment, and human resources. Other I-O psychologists hold research or academic positions in university settings. Specific areas of specialization in I-O psychology include human-computer interaction and human factors. Opportunities in consulting are also available for experienced I-O psychologists.

How Does I-O Psychology Apply to Consulting?

Effective consulting requires expertise in several different areas, including job analysis, selection, performance appraisal, training, organizational development, change management, and team dynamics. Experienced Ph.D.- level I-O psychologists are particularly qualified for consulting positions because of their in-depth expertise that is of critical relevance to organizations. I-O psychologists are frequently hired on as consultants to provide services to public, labor, business, academic, and community and health organizations.