An analysis of Coast Guard enlisted retention
Wellington, Kurt R.
Thomas, George W.
Kocher, Kathryn M.
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This thesis investigated the factors that influenced the retention of Coast Guard enlisted personnel. A multivariate regression model was developed for a sample of 377 first-term, four-year males. The model was estimated using data from the Coast Guard Personnel Management Information System data base (demographic, trainability, enlisted, enlisted performance and unit characteristics), and results from the Coast Guard 1991-1992 CAREER DECISION SURVEY to determine their relative importance in retention behavior. The results suggested that members' trainability (measured by AFQT scores) and age upon original entry into the service had important effects upon retention. Personnel who thought about leaving the service most due to command climate and coworker issues were more likely to leave the service than personnel who thought about leaving the service most due to pay and benefits, self-development, working environment and family and personal life issues. This suggests that policies which improve general working conditions and job satisfaction, as well as self- development and pay and benefits issues and service impact upon personal and family life appear to have positive impacts upon retention. Detailed recommendations were provided for additional variables in the model and survey improvement. These findings can help the Coast Guard managers and manpower planners understand the important influences upon junior enlisted personnel retention decisions and the impact personnel policies can have upon those decisions.
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