Thesis

Do age and generational differences exist in the federal workforce?

A major change is occurring within the American workforce. The Baby Boomers who have been employed within the general workforce force for decades are now retiring or becoming eligible to retire. The gap left within organizations from the retirement of these older and skilled workers will be felt across all segments of society. As a result, younger generations of workers will need to step in and fill the void left by the Baby Boomers. To address these changes, organizations will need to plan for and accommodate an age diverse workforce. This is nowhere more evident than within the Federal government where a large proportion of workers are older Baby Boomers. As they retire, Federal agencies will need to develop personnel plans to attract and retain younger workers more urgently than organizations within the private sector. All this involves understanding the values and motives from an age and generational perspective. Little research has examined age and/or generational differences within the public sector. Fewer studies still, have examined age and/or generational differences within the Federal workforce. I therefore contribute to the literature by using 1979 Federal Employee Attitude Survey (FEAS) and 2008 Federal Human Capital Survey (FHCS) data in my thesis to determine what if any age and/or generational differences exist in values/motivations within the Federal workforce. The results from logistic regressions and Pearson Chi2 tests revealed there are age and generational differences on values/motives within the Federal workforce.

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