A Study of The Theories on Turnover

Ongori (2017) observed that voluntary turnover can be explained through the “folding model” that is based on the theory of decision-making, image theory, which asserts that voluntary turnover is influenced by an employee’s decision to quit. Image theory attests that people often leave their posts and organizations after analyzing their motivation to quit. On the other hand, the theory of organizational equilibrium (TOE) explains employee turnover intentions based on the assumption that there is balance between employees’ contribution and inducement with that of an organization (Alla & Rajaa 2019). Therefore, the theory states that employees’ decision to quit is based on the outcome of their analysis of their contribution to the organization visa-vie the organization’s contribution towards their lives (Ngo-Henha 2017). Therefore, based on TOE, perceived desirability to move and easiness of movements are considered the predominant factors of turnover intentions (Alla & Rajaa 2019). From the TOE point of view, job satisfaction depends on an employee’s compatibility with various assigned roles, predictability of personal relationship with the roles, and the conformity of what one does with self-image. According to Ngo-Henha (2017) there seems to be causal-effect relationship between turnover and the size of the organization, possibility of transfer, which also affects the desirability to leave.

.           Also, turnover intension can be explained through the social exchange theory which influence the relationship between social entities based on their ability to respect implicitly and explicitly agreed upon social rules and norms of exchanges that influence the rule reciprocity (Alla & Rajaa 2019; Ngo-Henha 2017). The rule of reciprocity dictates that one ought to get treatment similar to how he or she treats others (Alla & Rajaa 2019). Therefore, based on social exchange theory, employees are connected through a network of work relationships which influence their intentions to either keep a job or quit (Ngo-Henha 2017). Non-respect of implicitly or explicitly agreed rules by either co-workers or management catalyzes turnover. On the other hand, employee turnover intentions can be explained through the job embeddedness theory which states that employees have several connections in their organizations and communities, which they fear losing or sacrifice to seek new career opportunities (Alla & Rajaa 2019; Ngo-Henha 2017). Also, giving up familiar colleagues, good day care, easy commute, and good club membership influence employees to stay in their jobs because they feel embedded to their social and professional environment (Ngo-Henha 2017)

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Herzberg’s two-factor motivation-hygiene theory postulate that employee’s turnover intention can be influenced by motivation factors, which affect job satisfaction, and hygiene factors, which catalyze job dissatisfaction (Ngo-Henha 2017). According to Herzberg’s two-factor motivation-hygiene theory, an employee’s response to turnover intentions increases when factors that his or her overall satisfaction are negatively affected. Another theory that explains turnover intentions is the resource-based view which states that resources (capabilities, assets, organizational processes, and information) that influence performance advantages are rare, non-substitutable, costly to imitate, and valuable (Ngo-Henha 2017). As a result, they help an organization achieve competitive advantage. Therefore, employees are likely to stay in their jobs as long as the feel valued and treated as special, otherwise, they start entertaining turnover intention appeals.

The Equity Theory provides rationale for turnover intentions based on the notion that feelings of equity and fairness in work environment motivates employees’ productivity. According to the Equity Theory, employee’s satisfaction depends on exchange relationship where they offer their effort with expected outcome. Therefore, when analyzing the value of the outcome against their input, employees can determine the equity or inequity associated with other reference groups, including colleagues doing the same job. Employees will strive to achieve equity where they feel there is inequity through altercation of input, including skills, experience, and effort. Also, turnover intentions can be explained through the human capital theory that states that factors such as level of education, training, and knowledge directly influence employee productivity. Consequently, organizations are likely to invest in employee development to increase productivity. Nevertheless, employee education and training enhance their employability in the job market, which increase their turnover intentions for better opportunities. Lastly, employees’ desire to leave can be explained through the Expectancy-Confirmation Theory that postulates that people often have expectations before taking action. Therefore, if their expectation is positively met, it increases their satisfaction, and vice versa. An analysis of expectations before and after the event determines satisfaction levels. When employees, enter organizations, they look out to see if their expectations and values are met, affecting their decision to stay of they are met or leave if otherwise (Ngo-Henha 2017).

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