Journal of Service Science and Management, 2011, 4, 158-164
doi:10.4236/jssm.2011.42019 Published Online June 2011 (
Copyright © 2011 SciRes. JSSM
Turnover Determinants of New Employees in
International Hotels
Huang-Wei Su1, Li-Tze Lee2*, Chiang-Ku Fan3
1Department of Tourism and Leisure Management, Tung-Fang Design University, Kaohsiung, Chinese Taipei; 2Department of Ac-
counting and Information, Overseas Chinese University, Taichung, Chinese Taipei; 3Department of Risk Management and Insurance,
Shih Chien University, Taipei, Chinese Taipei.
Received February 15th, 2011; revised March 18th, 2011; accepted April 13th, 2011.
The high turnover rates of new employees in the first career year usually forces hotel human resource managers to face
difficult dilemmas. This work presents a modified Delphi method and an analytic hierarchy process (AHP) method to
objectively select international hotels based on the results of interviews with experts in the field. Analysis results indi-
cate that the exp erts select the international ho tels with the potentia l highest turno ver risk based on the follo wing rank:
internal contentment, external contentment, and organization proffer. Moreover, sensitivity analysis surveys weight of
the degree of influence with an alternative hierarchy.
Keywords: Modified Delphi Method, Analytic Hierarchy Process, Turnover Dete rminant, International Hotel
1. Introduction
Employees are recognized as important organizational
asset and ultimately, firms invest considerable capital in
the human resources. Organizational cost incurred due to
employees quitting their jobs and the subsequent hiring
of replacement personnel [1], new-hire training [2], and
general costs for administration [3] can be tremendous in
terms of personal, work-unit and organizational re-adjust
ment [3,4].
High employee turnover rates are a fundamental labor
problem in the hotel sector [5]. A shortage of manpower
not only affects service performance, it limits our choices
for more qualified hotel staff. Furthermore, a shortage of
manpower creates high staff turnover and payroll costs. It
also results in disruptions in our operations and service
standards [6].
It means many hotel employees terminate their job in
their first year. The high employee turnover rate in the
first career year usually forces a hotel to face difficult
dilemmas. On the one hand, a hotel human resource
manager may try to discourage turnover by designing
friendly working environment, better benefit, and effi-
cient training programs for their employees. On the other
hand, a human resource manager may face the risk the
well trained hotel employees will become attractive po-
tential workforce for other hotel competitive [7]. Thus,
decreasing employee turnover intention of new employ-
ees is an important organizational issue that merits thor-
ough exploration.
To our knowledge, very few turnover determinant
studies related to Taiwan hotel employees. This is not
surprising since there are severe data limitations in such
studies. The main reason is that information on job fluc-
tuations ideally requires examining employees who have
turnover intention. In reality, an organizational wide
survey may have difficulty to target right employees who
have turnover intention and to question them turnover
determinants. Fortunately, turnover intentions and actual
turnovers were strongly correlated [8]. Such research
result presented an interesting alternative for analyzing
turnover intention.
The purpose of this study is to search the turnover de-
terminants and categorize them into three criteria: Inter-
nal Contentment, External Contentment, and Organiza-
tional Proffer, then employ AHP to establish a model for
predicting potential turnover risk of international hotels
and determine the weights of turnover determinants.
2. Literature Review
Based upon theoretical perspective of economy theory
and psychology theory, this study identified several de-
terminants of job turnovers.
Turnover Determinants of New Employees in International Hotels159
2.1. Determinants of Job Turnovers Based upon
Internal Contentment
Ferres et al. [9] investigated the influence of co-worker
trust on selected organizational perceptions and found
co-worker trust was a significant predictor of turnover
intention. The positive relationship between job strains
and turnover intentions was the strongest factor when
there was minimal cooperation amongst employees [10].
Practitioners and academics alike have underscored the
importance of mentoring because of the benefits that
accrue to the subordinates as well as the organization
Emotional exhaustion was fond to predict organiza-
tional commitment, turnover intentions, and job per-
formance. Most of these relationships remained signifi-
cant even after taking into account the effects of age,
gender, and ethnicity [14]. Another study such as Barsky
[15] utilized data from two divergent samples (sales rep-
resentatives and managers) and employed both self and
informant reports of strain measures. They predicted that
perceived job stressors would fully mediate the relation-
ship between negative affectivity and turnover intentions.
2.2. Determinants of Job Turnovers Based upon
External Contentment
Working time may influence job-to-job mobility in a
positive manner since lower working hours could imply
that a worker is less integrated in a firm [16]. It is also
conceivable the long working hours may also increase
the desire to change one’s job. An inverse relationship
between the wage rate and the probability of a job
change, which has received the most attention in related
literatures, is assumed [17,18]. Other job and employer
characteristics such as fringe benefits, flexible working
schedules, promotion expectations, firm-specific training,
and firm size have been shown to relate to turnover [19]
2.3. Determinants of Job Turnovers Based upon
Organizational Proffer
The literature on the determinants of turnover intention
concerning organizational proffer is extremely vast and
multifaceted [22,23]. Sousa-Poza and Henneberger [8]
analyzed job-turnover intentions in 25 countries found
that determinants of turnover intentions do vary substan-
tially among countries. However, job satisfaction, job
security, and organization commitment are significant in
most countries. Meanwhile, in several psychological
models of turnover, the factors with regard to career
commitment, job commitment, organizational commit-
ment [2], and job satisfaction are considered to be the
determinants of turnover intentions. Another social work
of Freund’s [24] study found that social workers’ career
commitment had a significant influence on withdrawal
intentions and on thinking of quitting the organization.
Using survey data form an occupationally heteroge-
neous sample of white-collar employees from various
organizations, Poon [25] found manipulations of per-
formance ratings arising from personal bias had negative
effects on turnover intention and job satisfaction.
Chen et al. [26] claimed that the larger the gap, the
higher the levels of turnover intentions. Another study by
Joiner et al. [27] proposed that the mentoring process
could serve both career enhancement and psycho-social
functions for th e subordinates. Career enhancement roles
in mentoring include sponsorship, coaching, exposure,
protection and prov ision of challenging assign ments. The
psycho-social functions include acceptance, counseling,
emotional support and role modeling [28].
Literature regarding turnover intention suggested that
conditions of employment (e.g. career opportunities)
were important causes of turnover intention [29]. When
employees considered their career opportunities within
the organization as limited or absent, a withdrawal reac-
tion might be evoked in order to cope with the frustra-
tions [30].
3. Methodology
In addition to adopting the modified Delphi method to
accumulate Subject Matter Expert (SME) opinions and
identify a normal evaluation criterion, this study also
utilizes the AHP theory to establish a model for predict-
ing potential turnover risk of internation a l hotels.
Turnover determinants of new employees of interna-
tional hotels must be selected effectively, systematically
and objectively to facilitate human resources managers in
decision making. Therefore, the Delphi method is
adopted to enable SMEs to reach consensus efficiently,
subsequently providing administrators with an objective
means of predicting potential turnover risk of interna-
tional hotels.
As a decision-making method that decomposes a com-
plex multicriteria decision problem into a hierarchy [31],
Analytic Hierarchy Process (AHP) is also a measurement
theory that priorities the hierarchy and consistency of
judgmental data provided by a group of decision makers.
AHP incorporates the evaluations of all decision makers
into a final decision, without having to elicit their utility
functions on subjective and objective criteria, by pair
wise comparisons of the alternatives [32].
4. Results
4.1. De cisi o n M o de l Appl i ca t ion
The estimation model in this study cons ists of two phases.
Copyright © 2011 SciRes. JSSM
Turnover Determinants of New Employees in International Hotels
Copyright © 2011 SciRes. JSSM
among the group of SMEs. The first phase includes four steps, in which the appro-
priate evaluation criterion is id entified using the modified
Delphi method. The second phase includes six steps, in
which the weight of the decision evaluation criterion is
calculated and the suitability of the international hotels
model is evaluated–both by using the AHP theory. The
phases are described in detail as follows.
Step 3: Use all criteria to add or omit opinions from
the group of SMEs.
The Likert 5-point scale is used to determine the crite-
rion weights: A criterion is considered important if its
weight su rpasses 4 on the scale. Additio nally, the criteria
for the major turnover determinants under consideration
are used when predicting the potential highest turnover
risk hotel.
4.1.1. First Phase: Select the Evaluation Criterion
through the Modified Delphi Method Step 4: Establish an evaluation criteria model to pre-
dicting the potential highest turnover risk hotel.
Step 1: Designate the group of human resource SMEs in
hotel business. SMEs form the criterion to establish an estimation
model for predicting the potential highest turnover risk
hotel, in which the modified Delphi method is adopted to
reach a consensus among SMEs. A satisfactory criterion
is obtained after three rounds of questionnaire surveys
(Table 1).
Nine human resources managers of international hotels
are selected to comprise the group of SMEs under the
condition that each SME has: (a) at least 10 years of pro-
fessional experience in the international hotel business
sector, and (b) participated in the decision-making proc-
ess of selecting turnover determinants of new employees
in international ho tels. 4.1.2. Second Phase: Determine the Criteria Weight
for the Evaluation Criteria of International
Hotels by Applying AHP
Step 2: Review pertinent literature and accumulate
relevant documents on hotel employees’ turnover deter-
minants assessment. Step 1: Establish a hierarchy structure.
Turnover determinants as evaluation factors for new
employees in international hotels comprise several levels,
including the goal hierarchy, criteria hierarchy, sub-
Accumulate local and overseas research papers on
identifying turnov er determinants to be considered in the
quantitative criteria for the international hotels. The cri-
teria under evaluation correspond to the consensus criteria hierarchy and alternative hierarchy (Figure 1).
Table 1. Evaluation criteria for new employees in international hotels.
Criteria Sub-Criteria References
Internal Contentment Manager mentoring process for career enhancement and psycho-social for the subordinates (TF12) [11-13]
Emotional exhaustion or job stressors (TF14) [14]
Co-worker trust of cooperation amongst employees (TF15) [9]
External Contentment Wage rate (TF6) [17,18]
Length of working time (TF5) [16]
Fringe benefits (TF7) [19]
Training program (TF11) [26]
Career opportunities (TF13) [29]
Organization Proffer Organization commitment, career commitment, and job commitment (TF17) [22]
Figure 1. Hierarchical structure to select and evaluate the international hotels.
Turnover Determinants of New Employees in International Hotels 161
Step 2: Establish a pairwise comparison matrix.
Based on the ability of SMEs to assign weight v alues, the
geometric mean value is used to calculate comprehensive
decision-making scores from SMEs. In doing so, the
standard weight values can be established to predict the
potential highest turnover risk hotel. For instance, the
main criteria are formed as the sample, as shown in Ta-
ble 2. Formulae 1 and 2 are used to calculate the aggre-
gate pairwise comparison matrix.
Step 3: Compute the eigenvalue and eigenvector.
The pairwise comparison matrix of the criteria and
sub-criteria is used to obtain each hierarchical factor
weight, in which the eigenvector is calculated by formula
(3) and formula (4). Table 3 summaries those results.
Step 4: Perform the consistency test.
Based on formula (5) and formula (6), the pairwise
comparison matrix of consistency is determined for each
hierarchy, as shown in Table 2. If the results of the six
SMEs in terms of consisten cy ratio and consensus of CR
are smaller than “0.1” they conform to principles of con-
Step 5: Compute the relative weight of each hierarchy.
Table 3 summarizes the results for the relative weights
of the elements for each level. According to this table,
the SMEs predict the poten tial highest turnov er risk hotel
based on the following rank: Internal Contentment
(0.343), External Contentment (0.333), and Organization
Proffer (0.323). Evaluation results of the sub-criteria are
summarized as Table 3.
Step 6: Calculate the whole level weight to predict the
potential high est turnover risk hotel.
In alternative hierarchy level, there are three top Oc-
cupancy Rate international hotels in Kaohsiung City [33],
including Howard Plaza Hotel Kaohsiung (HPHK), The
Ambassador Hotel Kaohsiung (AHK), and The Grand
Hi-Lai Hotel (GHH). The potential highest turnover risk
hotel is selected based on the highest score, in the fol-
lowing order: HPH (0.371), GHH (0.362), and AH
(0.267), confirming that HPH is the potential highest
turnover risk international hotel for new employees, as
shown in Table 4.
4.2. Sensitivity Analysis
When an advance research is required, Expert Choice
software is adopted here to perform sensitivity analysis.
Sensitivity analysis can be perfor med to survey the crite-
rion weight with respect to determining how it influences
an alternative hierarchy. A survey is made of how the
criteria and sub-criteria weights influence three alterna-
tive hierarchies. According to our results for the Dy-
namic Sensitivity for nodes below Goal, the alternative
hierarchy is of the following order: HPH, GHH, and AH
(Figure 2).
When internal contentment increases form 34.3% to
60.2%(Figure 3), then the scope of alternative HPH
(37.3%) will be less than alternative GHH (37.4%). In-
terestingly, when external contentment increases to 62.4%
(Figure 4), then the scopes of alternative GHH (36.2%)
will be also exceed alternative HPH (36.1%). That is,
when the criteria weigh t of either internal conten tment or
external contentment increase continually, the HPH will
be substituted by GHH from the best alternative to the
second alternative.
The results in Table 4 shows that GHH is rated the
highest in criteria such as internal contentment and ex-
ternal contentment. In contrast, HPH proves to be only
the most highly rated one for the organization proffer.
The circumstance is that the differences among three
criteria weights are tiny, that is why HPH is the best
choice. Therefore, when the criteria weight of either in-
Table 2. Aggregation of the pairwise comparison matrix for criteria of main criteria.
Internal Contentment External Contentment Organization Proffer
Internal Contentment 1 1.0303 1.0625
External Contentment 0.9706 1 1.03125
Organization Proffer 0.9412 0.9697 1
CI = 0.00; CR = 0.00 < 0.1
Table 3. Weights of criteria and sub-criteria.
Criteria Criteria Weights Sub-Criteria Sub-Criteria WeightsWeights of over all Levels
Internal Contentment 0.343 Manager mentoring process (TF12)0.360 0.123
Emotional exhaustion (TF14) 0.340 0.117
Co-worker trust (TF15) 0.300 0.103
0.333 Wage rate (TF6) 0.396 0.132
Working time (TF5) 0.386 0.129
External Contentment Fringe benefits (TF7) 0.218 0.073
0.323 International hotel (TF11) 0.397 0.128
Organization Proffer Career opportunities (TF13) 0.380 0.123
Organization commitment (TF17) 0.223 0.072
Copyright © 2011 SciRes. JSSM
Turnover Determinants of New Employees in International Hotels
Figure 2. Dynamic sensitivity for nodes below goal.
Figure 3. Dynamic sensitivity when internal contentment increases.
Figure 4. Dynamic sensitivity when external contentment increases.
Copyright © 2011 SciRes. JSSM
Turnover Determinants of New Employees in International Hotels 163
Table 4. Hotel rank by AHP model of selection.
Criteria Criteria
Weights HPH GHH AH
Internal contentment 0.343 0.376 0.391 0.233
External contentment 0.333 0.349 0.360 0.290
Organization proffer 0.323 0.390 0.332 0.277
Entirely Sum Score 0.371 0.362 0.267
Rank 1 2 3
ternal contentment is raised higher than 60.2% or exter-
nal contentment is raised higher than 62.4%, GHH be-
comes optimized among these three alternatives.
5. Conclusions
Predicting the potential highest turnover risk hotel is of-
ten a complicated task. Especially in the rapidly changing
economical environment, human resources managers
lack precise and objective decision-making procedures
and evaluation criteria. Therefore, integrating quantita-
tive methods into the evaluation procedure enables deci-
sion makers to identify the potential highest turnover
riskinternational ho tel objectively and efficiently.
Research results find that SMEs predict the potential
highest turnover risk international hotel for the new em-
ployees based on the following rank: Internal Content-
ment (0.343), External Contentment (0.333), and Organ-
izational Proffer (0.323), respectively.
The result from the sensitivity analysis indicates the
changing of the criteria weight will result in different
alternative ranking. This finding implies the economical
environment changing, such as economical tsunami, will
lead to a different pursuing goal for new employees.
Moreover, the pursuing goal changed means it is the time
to update the priority of international hotels.
Finally, the findings in this research demonstrate the
effectiveness of the proposed method in predicting the
potential highest turnover risk hotel. This study recom-
mends that not only human resources managers but also
the other managers in hotel industry can use this model
to evaluate and predict th e potential highest turnover risk
international hotel to streng then the competition capacity.
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