ERIC Number: ED271596
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1986-Feb
Employee Turnover in the Federal Government. A Special Study.
Musell, R. Mark
A study of employee turnover in the Federal government showed that in 1984, about 195,000 full-time, nonpostal Federal workers with permanent appointments left Federal jobs or transferred to other Federal agencies--representing a turnover rate of 11.5 percent. The turnover was about three percentage points higher for white-collar workers than for blue-collar workers. Among white-collar workers, turnover varied by occupation and length of time on the job. Based on a review of voluntary separations, clerical workers showed the highest turnover among the government's major white-collar occupational groups--with rates standing at nearly twice that for all groups. Workers with few years on the job also showed high turnover. Those with five years of service or less had a turnover rate more than twice that for all workers and more than 20 times that for workers with more than 25 years on the job. Comparison with the private sector showed that Federal turnover is relatively low, but the differences depend on what data are used and the different structures of opportunity in the government and the private sector. The private sector may have only a two percent higher quit rate when all factors are taken into account. Turnover data can be used in management decision making. Costs associated with turnover can be large; however, using lower-cost new employees may offset the costs of training. The effectiveness of quit rates as a management tool will depend on how they are used; factors other than pay need to be taken into account in adjusting for turnover. (Eight tables containing turnover data are used in this summary report.) (KC)
Publication Type: Reports - Research
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: Congress of the U.S., Washington, DC. Congressional Budget Office.