Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Science in Engineering Management


Department of Systems Engineering and Management

First Advisor

Daniel T. Holt, PhD


From a managerial perspective, the attraction and retention of high-quality employees is more important today than ever before (Holtom, Mitchell, Lee, & Eberly, 2008). This continuing growth of importance with regards to retention has validated the efforts of many studies within the context of turnover to better understand the relationship between turnover and the factors that may influence the behavior. Employers want to know what the reasons are for employee turnover. However, more importantly is that once behaviors are identified the employers are then equipped with a better understanding of how this relationship can be controlled. This relationship also has significant importance within the military structure because of its difference when compared to other firms and organizations. As military operations continue to develop and requirements continue to grow, it is critical to maintain continuity through retention of experienced, high-quality members. The United States military relies solely on training and developing its young members to grow into the senior leaders of its organization; it does not recruit senior executives from outside the organization to function as the senior leaders. The uniqueness of this structure within the United States military expresses in itself the importance of retention and controlling turnover among its members. As a result to this unique structure, Congress, the Department of Defense, and military commanders are concerned by the increased rates of turnover (Huffman, Adler, Dolan, & Castro, 2005). The purpose of this study intends to address this concern.

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