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Retaining the thin blue line: What shapes workers' intentions not to quit the current work environment

Martin Gächter (), David Savage and Benno Torgler

International Journal of Social Economics, 2013, vol. 40, issue 5, 479-503

Abstract: Purpose - The purpose of this paper is to investigate the relationship between workplace factors and the intentions of police officers to quit their current department. Design/methodology/approach - Data from a survey of Baltimore officers, designed to examine the relationship between police stress and domestic violence in police families were used. Using multivariate regression analysis, the authors focus on the officers' stated intentions to look for alternative employment, with proxies for social and workplace factors. Findings - Higher levels of cooperation (trust), interactional justice and work-life-balance reduce police officers' intentions to quit. While high levels of physical and psychological strain and trauma are not correlated with intentions to quit. Research limitations/implications - A discernible limitation of this study is the age of the data analyzed and that many changes have occurred in recent times (policing and social). It would be of great interest to repeat this study to gauge the true effect. Practical implications - There are policy implications for retention and recruitment: it may possible to decrease the ethnic and gender gaps, through identifying officers at risk and creating programs to hold existing minorities, recruit more, whilst maintaining a strong, happy and healthy department. Originality/value - This study examines the impact of workplace factors on quitting intention for police officers. It is demonstrated that social capital, fairness and work-life balance are moderators for quitting, adding to the literature on worker retention, as little research has been done using multivariate analysis on quitting intentions.

Keywords: Police; Turnover rates; Job satisfaction; Stress; Police officers; United States of America; Work-life balance; Fairness (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Date: 2013
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Working Paper: Retaining the Thin Blue Line: What Shapes Workers' Intentions not to Quit the Current Work Environment (2010) Downloads
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