A Recent Look at the Factors Influencing Workforce Retention of Public Child Welfare

Sharon E. Williams, Grambling State University
Quienton I. Nichols, Kennesaw State University
Takeisha Wilson, Kennesaw State University
Alan Kirk, Kennesaw State University


Consistency of services to children and their families continues to be an ongoing problem in public child welfare agencies. Worker turnover is high, thus affecting the availability of a well trained, experienced workforce. It is critical that we continue to explore the factors associated with worker turnover and retention in public child welfare agencies. Such knowledge will allow us to determine the needs of workers, administrators, and the agency in general, in an effort to create an environment that will result in worker retention, and a better quality of services. Children and their families will be major benefactors of such knowledge as the consistency and quality of services will be enhanced. Existing research has found that outcomes for families and children are affected by the workload and training of frontline workers, and organizational characteristics (GAO, 2003, NASW, 2004, and Milner, 2003). This study describes personal and organizational factors relative to worker retention for public child welfare workers in the northwest corridor of Georgia.