Job Satisfaction and Staff Turnover: Factors Affecting Employee Retention

Category: Employee, Motivation, Staff
Last Updated: 31 Mar 2023
Pages: 12 Views: 128
Table of contents


Job satisfaction is the feeling of the employee about the job, if he feels good and contained from the job, he is satisfied from the job else vice versa. Job satisfaction is the prime necessity of the employee to keep them retained in any organisation. Job satisfaction is directly proportional to staff turnover and plenty literature exists on this topic. Jackofsky and Peters (1983) were among the earliest researchers who pinned out that there is a huge relationship between the employee leaving the job and the job satisfaction among them and many researchers have established similar relationship.

Having worked for one of the company in Pakistan as a permanent employee for 2 years, I was one of the victims of lack of job satisfaction which eventually was the cause for me leaving my job and focussing on my further studies. This experience of myself led me a drive to do a research on the relationship between the job satisfaction and the staff turnover. Since plenty research has already been done on this topic this research tries to find the different factors affecting the job satisfaction of the employee.

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This research aims to study the different factors associated with job satisfaction and eventually causing staff turnover which when found out could be taken care of and hence providing employee with proper factors and minimising the turnover. Thus this research tries to the following questions.

  1. Is job satisfaction the prime culprit behind the staff turnover?

One of the questions this research tries to answer is the relationship between the job satisfaction and the staff turnover.

2. What are the factors associated with job satisfaction which are causing job dissatisfaction?

Secondly, this research tries to analyse the factors associated with job satisfaction and once this is known this helps organisation to take extra care on these factors which are associated with the job satisfaction and eventually leading to the staff turnover.

Under this broad endeavour, this research aim to fulfil the objectives.

  1.  To postulate the relation between the salaries, supervision, status, security i.e., hygiene factors with job satisfaction.
  2.  To analyse the relation between the growth, reorganisation, authority i.e. motivation factor with job satisfaction.
  3.  To postulate the relation between the job satisfaction and staff turnover.

Once this research is carried out this will help identify the culprit behind the increasing staff turnover and eventually help management to retain their expertise by taking extra care on those factors.

Literature Review

The best suited theory to measure the relationship between the job satisfaction and the staff turnover in many organisations is the Frederick Herzberg and his co-workers (1959) two factors theory and this is why this research is based on the different factors associated with job satisfaction as identified by Herzberg. This theory includes two factors which measures the satisfaction level and the motivation level among the staffs. These factors are:

Hygiene factors: These factors are needed to ensure that the employee does not get dissatisfied with their job. The factors are working conditions, quality of supervision, salary, status, security, company policies and administration. Taking care of these factors might reduce the staff turnover and finally resulting in reduced employee cost.

Motivation factors: These factors are needed to motivate to employee for higher performance. The factors are achievement, recognition for achievement, responsibility for task, interest in the job, growth. Thus, in any organisations these two factors are essential component and in order to keep their staff retained and motivated.

Providing employee with proper hygiene factors ensures that they do not get dissatisfied but that does not mean that they are satisfied. In fact it is the motivation factors as mentioned above that helps the organisation to keep their staff satisfied with their job. Thus, we look into both different hygiene and motivation factors that have the relation with the staff turnover.

Jackofsky and Peters (1983) were among the first researchers who pinned out a relationship between the job satisfaction and the turnover among the employee. Current research studies recommended that worker turnover was related to job satisfaction generated from factors internal and external to the organization.

Allen, Drevs, & Rube,(1999); Cooper-Hakim & Viswesvaran, (2005); Slattery & Selvarajan, (2005); Trevor, (2001), Price et al. (2007) all supported the fact that job satisfaction was on top of all the main reason of employee leaving the job. In one of the research carried out by Bass, (1990); Hoffman, (2007); Owens, (2006) it was found out that organisations profited with increase in production, decrease in staff turnover and increased efficiency when provided with good working condition. Managers having the knowledge of negative impact of employee turnover take extra care on the working environment of the company and by doing this they not only retain their expertise in their company but also save the extra cost that need to be invested on training and education of new staff once their experienced staff leave the job due to job dissatisfaction. The study of staff turnover clearly indicated that job contentment was one of the main reasons behind staff leaving the job.

It is clear that the management needs to understand the need and importance of the motivation to keep their skilled and expert employee retained which eventually profits the company not only by saving the extra investment on the training their new employee but also by gaining the competitive advantage on their rival companies . Lockwood, (2007) noticed that the employee are hugely affected by by managers behaviours, training, work division, authority, job life balance, employee return and pay are all dependent on the behaviour of the managers. All these mentioned factors have a huge connection with the job satisfaction of the employee and on lack of these proper motivation factors employee tend to quit from their current job (Daly & Dee, 2006; Lambert, Hogan, & Barton, 2001; Zellars et al., 2005).

Ramlall (2004) suggested that worker spur has consequence on worker turnover rate in the organization. Ramlall, (2004) suggested that the companies benefits a lot by retaining their expert and skilled employee and the most appropriate way of doing it is to provide them with proper hygiene and motivational factors. Lack of sufficient training to make employee cope with different circumstances and chances of growth opportunities is also one of the major reasons for turnover among employees. Green (2004) suggested that providing employees with good training and proper development opportunities makes a lot of difference in turnover rate and it certainly aids in decreased staff turnover. According to Owens (2006), training improved “job satisfaction, organizational commitment and turnover cognition” and, in addition the performance of the company as well. Little (2006) found out that more than double the amount of staffs tends to leave the companies in absence of proper training which goes down significantly on providing proper training. Elton Mayo came out with a finding that it is the job characteristics that have more priority over the wage or salary of the employee which was also supported by Wren, (1994). Rai, (2004) carried out a research and concluded that motivation helps both organisation as well as the employee to achieve their personal goals as well and by having motivated staffs companies can achieve its targets effectively .

Jones.B & Lloyd, (2005) conducted a research and identified that the policies of the company, remuneration, leader styles and the co-operation among the staff of the companies are the main points to be taken care of so that the staff do not get dissatisfied. Having provided staffs with all these factors does not confirm the motivation. It just confirms that the staffs do not get dissatisfied. To make them satisfied they need to be provided with motivation factors such as working environment, safety, growth as pointed out by Kinnear and Sutherland, (2001); Meudell and Rodham, (1998); Maertz and Griffeth, (2004). These are the factors that really helps the employee to be motivated and these are the factors that the company should take care of in order to keep their staff motivated retain their experts as well as get maximum benefits from their work and experience.

Thus, from the literature available we came to know that there are different factors associated with job satisfaction which has an effect on turnover. We also came to know that to keep the staff satisfied we should first of all take care that they do not get dissatisfied.

The different factors associated with job satisfaction and eventually leading to turnover are:

  1. 1. Pay:

Ting (1997) emphasized the importance of pay is powerfully determined of job satisfaction. in addition, he also explained two different type of pay methods effect on job satisfaction; contentment with pay itself and satisfaction with monetary scenario in the future. There is an established importance of two types which are related with job satisfaction.

Katz, (1987) in his research concluded that better payment not only makes the staff satisfied with the job but also help in the retention of the staffs. He not only emphasised that there is a strong correlation between the job satisfaction and the payment method but also the job satisfaction and the turnover among the staffs. Akerlof, (1984) also supported the above mentioned findings by Katz and also included that better payment method increases the loyalty as well as the productivity and the efficiency of the organisations.

2. Supervision:

Bradley, Petrescu and Simmons (2004) investigate the impact of human resource management practices related to job satisfaction. They confirmed the relation between the job satisfaction and the supervision and also confirmed that on absence of proper and efficient supervision they tend to quit from the job. In highly skilled jobs like engineering, R&D the excessive intervention of supervisor is undesirable and the employee quit from their jobs. Keashly and Jagatic (2000) give an idea about poor of supervision lead the dissatisfaction of workers or employees. Moreover, later study by Karasek and Theorell (1990) finds that deprived administration not only caused the dissatisfaction of employees’ work, but also turnover. In addition, Harmon et al., (2007) explains the manage overwork exercise which is supervision significantly correlated with amplified job satisfaction and lower turnover rates among the labour.

3. Training:

Tan & Batra, 1995; Aw & Tan, (1995), Schaffner (2001) on his study affirm the affiliation among job training and efficiency, yet job training tends to be drop value when the workers alter job, therefore the organization or firm boost the charge of keeping skilled position packed. In spite of, there is in uncertainly of the association connecting job training and turnover. Many studies have been overcome the suspicion such as Batt (2002) finds that “high-involvement” exercises such as independence, team group effort, and training are correlated to reduce employee turnover and enlarged productivity. Supporting by Lynch (1991) gives an idea about untaught labour lead to change job more often. A long the similar line, Huselid, Jackson and Schular (1995) come across that an growing in efficiency work excercises alter declining in turnover (Bradley, Petrescu & Simmons, 2004). Lack of suitable exercise is one of the major reasons for turnover. Green (2004) suggested that suitable assortment of the applicant and nurturing them from good training and proper progress opportunities makes a lot of difference in turnover rate as supported by Allen & Katz, (1995); Gordon & Bal, (2001).

Thus, we clearly see from the above literature that job training, pay methods, supervisions are the prime reasons of job satisfaction. If the employees are provided with the proper training, proper pay and good guidance the satisfaction level among the staffs are high and this has a direct effect on the turnover. If the satisfaction among staff is high they tend to retain to their current jobs and if the satisfaction level is low they tend to quit from their current job. So, this research wills basically testing the validity of these factors and their correlation between the job satisfaction and the staff turnover.

So this research will be carried out following the above theoretical framework. As suggested by the framework, provision of appropriate training, pay and supervision leads to job satisfaction whereas, inappropriate or no training, lesser pay, and poor supervision leads to turnover.

Research Methods

The research proposed will follow a deductive approach and will be and cross-sectional in nature being a study of particular phenomenon at a particular time. The research will follow a survey strategy as most cross-sectional studies do (Easterby-Smith et al.,2002;Robson,2002).

According to Fink (2003), surveys are systems for collecting quantitative information from people to describe people, their approach and their activities. Furthermore, survey integrates multiple pros, compared to other ways of research strategies. Some advantages of them are listed below:

Allows flexibility in terms of doing the survey like one could take interview for the data collection, send questionnaire through post or mails, take telephone interview or even observe the sample population and then generalise the result among the particular population on which the research is based on.
Surveys are cheap and efficient way of collecting information from large number of people. The questioned asked are up to the target which is then documented, veiled, and analyzed. Time and money on tangential questions is saved.
It is reliable due to being simple, easily understood by most population and being motivated towards the population. Researcher’s preconceived notion is greatly eliminated.
Feasibility of large samples at a time makes result statistically momentous, even when multiple variables are being compared.
Standardization provides you more control over the research process and helps reducing several errors.

Research Design

The research will be descriptive, cross-sectional in nature. The quantitative research consists of the detail and fully prepared and administered questionnaire satisfying the Fing’s (2003) features for the best survey information system. The research questionnaire will be divided in three groups first it will be demographic, like age, sex, location and the name of the company. The second section will be about measuring the supervision, job training and pay in the company. This section will have the questionnaire which are rated from 1 to 5 like 1(strongly agree) 2(agree), and similarly 5 (strongly disagree). The third section will consist of the questionnaire in order to measure the job satisfaction level and turnover.

Dependent variables: Staff turnover, satisfaction.

Independent variables: job training, pay , supervision.

Sampling Plan

The sample in this research would be all the staffs working in an organisations and the manager supervising those staffs of any randomly selected organisations. It is assumed that there would be around 30 staffs in each organisation so the total sample size is around 600 participants, which will in fact provide the detail calculation.

Data Collection and Interpretation

The entire prepared questionnaire will be mailed to the staffs of the organisations selection through a monkey survey accounted that is created for this survey. Maximum of 8 weeks is given to the staffs to return the questionnaire.

Once all the data is collected, the calculation of the sample who did not return the questionnaire is done also the number of sample who did not fully answered the questionnaire is calculated. The collected data are then entered in to the SPSS. All the data collected will be analysed in form of graphs and figures by the use of computer programs.

Ethical Issues

Permission will be taken from the authorised personnel of the organisation and each staff and manager will be informed before the commencement of supplying them with the questionnaire.


The proposed work plan for this study is explained in following time-scale (each column=28 days or 4weeks): The effort put in to work each day was 5 hours a day making each column 28*5=140 hours of effort which was double in case of data collection and the writing of full report, it took time the time for other column which was 280hours of effort.


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