Intention to quit amongst Generation Y academics at Higher Education Institutions

Robyn, Anecia Meghan (2012-12)

Thesis (MComm)--Stellenbosch University, 2012.

Thesis

ENGLISH ABSTRACT: Talent retention is currently an international challenge across industries, and especially for academic staff at higher education institutions (HEIs) in South Africa. It may be argued that HEIs are more dependent on the intellectual and creative abilities and commitment of their academic staff than most other organisations. For an HEI to maintain a long-term trajectory of excellence in terms of both research outputs and teaching, a strong focus on retaining a younger generation of skilled academics is needed. Unfortunately, in many fields HEIs have to compete with industry to retain these employees. At the same time, the academic profession has increasingly fallen behind the private sector in terms of remuneration, amongst others, resulting in a shortage of young academics in South African HEIs. An investigation into the intention to quit amongst Generation Y academics at HEIs therefore is justifiable. A mixed-method research design, including both qualitative (focus groups and blog) and quantitative phases (a self-administered questionnaire), was applied. Academics (n = 189) at six HEIs in South Africa were sampled. The Pearson product-moment correlation coefficients indicate that employee engagement, transformational leadership, job satisfaction, and remuneration, reward and recognition have a significant negative impact on intention to quit. Based on the multiple regression and partial least square (PLS) path modelling results, it was found that only employee engagement and job satisfaction have a significant negative impact on intention to quit. Therefore, the latter variables have the most significant impact on intention to quit amongst the sampled population. However, the PLS path modelling results suggest that, by including employee engagement, transformational leadership, job satisfaction, and remuneration, reward and recognition in the prediction of intention to quit, 45% of the variance will be explained. Relationships between the independent variables were also found: between employee engagement and job satisfaction; between transformational leadership and employee engagement; between transformational leadership and job satisfaction; and between remuneration, reward and recognition and job satisfaction. This study contributes to the body of knowledge on intention to quit among academics, and specifically the sought-after Generation Y academics. The findings serve as input for the development of efficacious retention strategies and mechanisms to retain Generation Y academics at HEIs in South Africa.

AFRIKAANSE OPSOMMING: Talentretensie is tans 'n internasionale uitdaging in verskeie industrieë en veral vir akademiese personeel in hoëronderwysinstansies (HOI's) in Suid-Afrika. Dit kan aangevoer word dat HOI's meer afhanklik is van die intellektuele en kreatiewe vermoëns en toewyding van hulle akademiese personeel as diemeeste ander organisasies. Vir 'n HOI om 'n langtermyn-bestaan van uitnemendheid in terme van navorsingsuitsette en onderrig te handhaaf, is 'n sterk fokus op die behoud van 'n jonger generasie van vaardige akademici nodig. Ongelukkig moet HOI's met die bedryf kompeteer om hierdie werknemers te behou. Terselfdertyd het die akademiese professie toenemend agter geraak met onder andere vergoeding, wat ‘n tekort aan jong akademici in Suid-Afrikaanse HOI's tot gevolg het. 'n Ondersoek na die intensie om te bedank onder Generasie Y akademici by HOI’s is gevolglik regverdigbaar. 'n Gemengde-metodenavorsingsontwerp wat beide kwalitatiewe (fokusgroepe en blog) en kwantitatiewe fases ('n self-geadministreerde vraelys) ingesluit het, is gebruik. Die steekproef het akademici (n = 189) verteenwoordig van ses HOI's in Suid-Afrika. Die Pearson produkmomentkorrelasies dui daarop dat werknemertoewyding, transformasionele leierskap, werkstevredenheid, en vergoeding, beloning en erkenning 'n beduidende negatiewe impak het op die intensie om te bedank. Die resultate van die meervoudige regressie en PLS modellering dui daarop dat slegs werknemertoewyding en werkstevredenheid 'n beduidende negatiewe impak op die intensie om te bedank het. Hierdie twee veranderlikes het die betekenisvolste impak gehad op die intensie om te bedank onder respondente in hierdie studie. Dit is belangrik om daarop te let dat die resultate van die PLS modellering daarop dui dat 45% van die variansie in die voorspelling van intensie om te bedank verduidelik word deur werknemertoewyding, transformasionele leierskap, werkstevredenheid, en vergoeding, beloning en erkenning. Statistiese verhoudings tussen die onderskeie onafhanklike veranderlikes is bevestig, naamlik tussen werknemertoewyding en werkstevredenheid; tussen transformasionele leierskap en werknemertoewyding; tussen transformasionele leierskap en werkstevredenheid; en tussen vergoeding, beloning en erkenning en werkstevredenheid. Hierdie studie dra by tot die uitbou van kennis oor die intensie om te bedank onder akademici, en spesifiek die gesogte Generasie Y akademici. Die bevindings dien as insette vir die ontwikkeling van doeltreffende retensiestrategieë vir die behoud van generasie Y akademici by HOI's in Suid-Afrika.

Please refer to this item in SUNScholar by using the following persistent URL: http://hdl.handle.net/10019.1/71603
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