This non-experimental quantitative study using structural equation modeling and the theory of planned behavior examined the relationships between latent variables, affective commitment and continuance commitment, and manifest variables, career intent and retention incentive decision behavior. The sample consisted of 598 U.S. Army Captains (14% of population) who met inclusion criteria of being commissioned in 2005 and answered all questions on the archival U.S. Army Research Institute's 2007 Survey of Officer Careers. Using fit indices such as RMSEA at 0.068 and the Bentler CFI at 0.93 the final model was considered an acceptable-to-good fit, where each increase of 1 point in career intent significantly predicted increased retention incentive decision behavior by 1/7 of a point (b = 0.142,p < .0001, β = 0.409). An increase in 1 point in affective commitment predicted increases in career intent by almost 2 points (b = 1.86, p < .0001, β= 0.457) and each point increase of continuance commitment increased career intent by a little over 1/2 a point ( b = 0.612,p < .0001, β = 0.234). There were three conclusions from this study. First, the final model extended the theory of planned behavior to the attitudes and intentions of Captains who were presented a retention incentive lending insights into remuneration for retaining entry-level employees for continued service in closed personnel systems. Second, affective commitment and continuance commitment were significant predictors of increases in career intent, and high career intent was a significant predictor of a taking a retention incentive, as the theoretical model predicted. Third, Army senior leaders were successful in retaining Army Captains with higher organizational commitment and career intent than those Captains who did not take an incentive. Four recommendations were made for Army practice: a.) continue the longitudinal survey, b.) continue to monitor external conditions and the effects on retention, c.) link leadership climate to retention, d.) tailor retention programs on retaining mid-grade officer talent. Three recommendations for future research include: a.) add non-native commitment to the longitudinal study, b.) consider the effects of remuneration on the profession of arms, and c.) analyze additional intervening variables in the model.
|School Location:||United States -- Arizona|
|Source:||DAI-A 74/12(E), Dissertation Abstracts International|
|Subjects:||Public administration, Occupational psychology, Organizational behavior, Military studies|
|Keywords:||Captain, Career intent, Closed personnel system, Human resource management, Organizational commitment, Planned behavior, Retention, Structural equation modeling, United States Army|
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