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ERIC Number: ED536721
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 2011
Pages: 236
Abstractor: As Provided
ISBN: ISBN-978-1-2670-8748-5
Understanding Turnover Intentions and Behavior of Indian Information Systems Professionals: A Study of Organizational Justice, Job Satisfaction and Social Norms
Iyer, Vidya V.
ProQuest LLC, Ph.D. Dissertation, University of Missouri - Saint Louis
Despite the phenomenal growth projected for the Indian information technology (IT) industry, one of the biggest challenges it faces is the high rate of turnover in offshore supplier firms based in India (Everest Research Group 2011). According to recent estimates, turnover rates among Indian information systems (IS) professionals have been reported to be between 30% and 45% per year (Ribiero 2011; Sengupta and Mishra 2010). In spite of the seriousness of this problem, only a few studies have addressed the determinants of turnover among Indian IS professionals (Bhal and Gulati 2006; Lacity et al. 2008). In this dissertation, we further explored three determinants of turnover that emerged as potentially important predictors of turnover intentions in our prior study (Lacity et al. 2008)--social norms, job satisfaction and job attributes. Though the construct of organizational alternatives was not supported in our previous study, we decided to test it as a predictor of turnover intentions to see if it has any impact in changing market conditions. Also, the model used in the study incorporated a new construct called supervisory focused organizational justice as a potential determinant of turnover intentions. It is a second order latent construct reflected and measured by four first order justice dimensions (distributive, procedural, interpersonal and informational justice). By including supervisory, environmental, and individual variables in the model, we addressed the cross level influence of IT context (Joseph et al. 2007) affecting an individual's turnover intentions and behavior. The research design was longitudinal to assess turnover behavior and its relationship with turnover intentions. Telephonic interviews were conducted with 75 Indian IS professionals based in India. These IS professionals included people working in the Indian ITeS (Information Technology enabled Services) sector (and not in call centers of Business Process Outsourcing BPO sector) with job titles ranging from software engineer, analyst, consultants to program and project managers from 8 different cities in India. Ten months later the respondents were contacted again to determine their actual turnover behavior. The interview questions had two parts--questions asking the respondents to rate their responses on a 5-point Likert scale, followed by an open ended "why" question letting the respondents explain their rating and rationale behind it. Data was quantitatively analyzed using structured equation modeling tool--PLS graph. Qualitative analysis using content analysis was also performed to gain deeper insights into understanding the responses, and examine why some hypotheses were not supported. The qualitative analyses further helped uncover some emerging constructs not measured and tested in the model-organizational satisfaction, work-life-balance, and stress. Though these variables are not new in the literature of turnover, they have yet to be tested as predictors of turnover intentions in Indian settings. Stress and work-life-balance are especially important variables to be examined in India to see the impact of hard deadlines and accommodating geographical time differences dictated by global outsourcing IT industry. Seven out of the 11 hypothesized relationships were supported. As far as the four first-order dimensions of justice are concerned, 3 out of the 4 dimensions were found to be significantly and negatively related to turnover intentions- distributive, procedural and informational justice. Also, the second order latent construct of overall organizational justice was found to be negatively related to turnover intentions. The hypothesized relationships between social norms and turnover intentions, and between organizational alternatives and turnover intentions were not supported. Job attributes for tasks not involving client interaction (programming, testing and project management tasks) were found to be negatively related to job satisfaction, verifying practitioner literature claims that a major cause of job dissatisfaction for Indian IS professionals comes from doing low end tasks of the software development life cycle (SDLC). Finally, turnover intentions was found to be positively related to turnover behavior explaining 29% of variance in turnover behavior. We made important contributions to the literature of turnover by being one of the few studies actually measuring turnover behavior and not adopting the prevalent approach of using turnover intentions as a surrogate for turnover behavior. A major gap in the turnover literature is lack of studies in diverse cultural settings, and we addressed this by studying Indian IS professionals working in India. Also, Joseph et al. (2007) in their meta-analysis emphasized the need to look at different turnover theories than the prevalent March and Simon model. We addressed this need and contributed to theory by testing a model of turnover that had new constructs not tested before, like supervisory organizational justice (second order) and supervisor focused four first-order justice dimensions, and social norms. By focusing on the supervisor as the source of justice, our study incorporated the newest thinking on organizational justice that advocates distinguishing the source of justice (Rupp et al. 2007). Our study is also the first one to measure all four dimensions of supervisory justice simultaneously. For future research, a revised model of turnover relevant for Indian IS professionals is proposed based on what emerged from the data. This involves adding new constructs like work-life-balance, stress, organizational satisfaction and removing constructs that did not find support in Indian contexts like organizational alternatives and social norms. As far as practitioners are concerned, we addressed the problem plaguing clients and suppliers of global offshore outsourcing industry by focusing on understanding turnover intentions and behavior of Indian IS professionals. We made some recommendations on how the quality of work of IS professionals can be enriched, and human resource (HR) practices targeted specifically towards them. [The dissertation citations contained here are published with the permission of ProQuest LLC. Further reproduction is prohibited without permission. Copies of dissertations may be obtained by Telephone (800) 1-800-521-0600. Web page:]
ProQuest LLC. 789 East Eisenhower Parkway, P.O. Box 1346, Ann Arbor, MI 48106. Tel: 800-521-0600; Web site:
Publication Type: Dissertations/Theses - Doctoral Dissertations
Education Level: Higher Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: India