Thesis Title

Opportunities For Career Advancement in the Public Sector: an Analysis of the Views of Frontline Supervisors in Missouri Merit Agencies

Date of Graduation

Spring 1988


Master of Public Administration


Political Science

Committee Chair

Kant Patel


Public sector state agencies face a major challenge in the coming years--the challenge of creating an organizational environment that will attract and retain high caliber professional employees so as to provide quality public services in a credible and effective manner. This study was designed to examine the ability of state agencies to provide career development opportunities for current and prospective employees by obtaining the views of frontline supervisors in the major merit agencies of Missouri. Over 500 frontline supervisors in state agencies were randomly selected to participate in a six page mail survey designed to capture their views on a range of topics related to career development opportunities. Results of this study showed that professional employees are committed to the value of the work done by their agency and believe in the overall effectiveness of their agency. There is evidence, however, that the most highly educated professional employees are the most likely to be considering the possibility of leaving the public sector for positions in the private sector. This study examines the factors that are important in the decisions of professionals to accept employment in the public sector as well as the problematic areas that may be challenging the ability of the public sector to recruit and retain the most competent employees in the years ahead.

Subject Categories

Public Administration


© Wilma Jean Kinder