Causes and Effects of Staff Turnover in the Academic Development Centre: A Case of a Historically Black University in South Africa

Chabaya Owence, Tshephe Geoffrey Pinagase, Molotsi Matshidiso Mercy


The high turnover of staff is unhealthy for the smooth running of institutions since it affects the growth, profitability and customer satisfaction whenever it occurs in the workplace. However, some employers see the process of staff leaving and being replaced as a natural and inevitable feature of the industry. This study focused on establishing the causes and effects of high staff turnover at an Academic Development Centre in one institution of higher learning in South Africa. The study specifically focused on the main causes of and the ground realities of the problem of employee turnover on sustainable growth of the organization. This was a qualitative study which adopted descriptive survey research design. Data was collected through interviews and narratives and respondents were the 6 staff members who resigned in 2012 from the institution under study as well as the remaining 8 staff members in the centre. The study revealed that, poor working conditions where employees were given short term contracts for a long period led to uncertainty at the job. More so, the understaffing as well as undefined job descriptions where one ended up being a jack of all trades led to job insecurity was also pointed out as a push factor. In addition, lack of academic promotion prospects was also found to be a push factor in the departure puzzle of staff. The study therefore recommended that, the management should improve the working conditions for the employees and finalise the proposed unit structure. Finally, the need to establish a promotion system that would motivate staff other than monetary remunerations was also recommended.

DOI: 10.5901/mjss.2014.v5n11p69

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Mediterranean Journal of Social Sciences ISSN 2039-9340(Print) ISSN 2039-2117(Online)

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