Journal of Management Information Systems

Volume 20 Number 1 2003 pp. 87-122

Nearing the Threshold: An Economics Approach to Pressure on Information Systems Professionals to Separate from Their Employer

Josefek, Jr Robert A and Kauffman, Robert J

ABSTRACT: Organizational approaches to managing information systems (IS) professionals have been making headlines as technology-intensive businesses search for ways to cope with an ever-changing economic landscape. Consequently, understanding and predicting employee quitting or separation behavior is crucial. We incorporate human capital theory from economics to form an alternative theoretical perspective for understanding IS professionals' separation and retention. This shift allows us to focus on precursors to observed separation, rather than attitudinal precursors of intentions. We introduce three new constructs: pressure to separate, retention frontiers, and separation thresholds. These constructs provide a basis for identifying when an employee is close to leaving the firm and for a new approach to analyze the potential effectiveness of action taken by a firm to change separation behavior: pre-implementation retention intervention assessment (PRI-assessment). We illustrate the application of the new approach using data on the observed separation behavior of 661 IS professionals at a large multidivision firm. [ABSTRACT FROM PUBLISHER] Copyright of Journal of Management Information Systems is the property of M.E. Sharpe Inc. and its content may not be copied or emailed to multiple sites or posted to a listserv without the copyright holder's express written permission. However, users may print, download, or email articles for individual use. This abstract may be abridged. No warranty is given about the accuracy of the copy. Users should refer to the original published version of the material for the full abstract. (Copyright applies to all Abstracts.)

Key words and phrases: binomial logit model, economic analysis, information systems professionals, information technology human capital, personnel separation, workforce retention