Does Person-Organization Fit (P-O Fit) Mediate the Relationship Between Employee Job Satisfaction and Turnover Intention: The Case of Insurance Agents in Malaysia

Oscar Dousin, Pei Sung Toh, Arsiah Bahron, Iklima Husna Abdul Rahim


Turnover intention is becoming a critical issue in most organization. Employees’ are leaving their job due to an alternative job offer with an attractive salary and employment benefits, supportive supervisors and a better work environment. The study examines the relationship between job satisfaction on employee turnover intention as well as the mediating effect of person-organization (P-O) fit among insurance agents in Malaysia. The study adopts a quantitative research methodology by surveying 184 insurance agents in Sabah, Malaysia in 2019. Four hypotheses were tested with validated measures of job satisfaction (pay, supervision and communication), turnover intention and person-organization fit. The study revealed that job satisfaction (pay and supervision) has a significant and negative impact to turnover intention. In addition, job satisfaction (communication in organization) has a significant and positive impact to turnover intention. However, person-organization fit found to be not significantly mediates the relationship. The study suggested that organizations should acknowledge the importance of pay, supervision and communication in organization to improving employees’ motivation and retention in organization. The three elements of job satisfaction could improve and promote harmonious and positive work environment.

Full Text:



Adams, G. A., Webster, J. R., & Buyarski, D. M. (2010). Development of an occupational embeddedness measure. Career Development International, 15(5), 420-436.

Alam, A., & Asim, M. (2019). Relationship between job satisfaction and turnover intention. International Journal of Human Resource Studies, 9(2), 163-194.

Albrecht, S. L., & Andreetta, M. (2011). The influence of empowering leadership, empowerment and engagement on affective commitment and turnover intentions in community health service workers: Test of a model. Leadership in Health Services, 24(3), 228-237.

Alonderiene, R. (2010). Enhancing informal learning to improve job satisfaction: Perspective of SMEs managers in Lithuania. Baltic Journal of Management, 5(2), 257-287.

Andrews, M. C., Baker, T., & Hunt, T. G. (2011). Values and person-organization fit: Does moral intensity strengthen outcomes? Leadership & Organization Development Journal, 32(1), 5-19.

Arnold, J. (1997). Managing careers into the 21st century. London: Sage.

Barrick, M. R., Mount, M. K., & Strauss, J. P. (1994). Antecedents of involuntary turnover due to a reduction in force. Personnel Psychology, 47(3), 515-535.

Barron, R., & Kenny, D. (1986). The moderator-mediator variable distinction in social psychological research: conceptual, strategic and statistical consideration, Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 51, 1173-1182.

Bartram, T., Casimir, G., Djurkovic, N., Leggat, S. G., & Stanton, P. (2012). Do perceived high performance work systems influence the relationship between emotional labour, burnout and intention to leave? A study of Australian nurses, Journal of Advanced Nursing, 68(7), 1567-1578.

Bloomquist, M. J., & Kleiner, B. H. (2000). How to reduce theft and turnover through better hiring methods. Management Research News, 23(7), 79-83.

Bowen, D. E., Ledford, G. E., & Nathan, B. R. (1991). Hiring for the organization, not the job. Academy of Management Executive, 5(4), 35-49.

Burlea-Schiopoiu, A., & Mihai, L. S. (2019). An integrated framework on the sustainability of SMEs. Sustainability, 11(21), 1-22.

Chatman, J. A. (1991). Matching people and organizations: Selectin and socialization in public accounting firms. Administrative Science Quarterly, 36(3), 459-484.

Coetzee, M., & Roythorne-Jacobs, H. (2007). Career counselling and guidance in teh workplace: A manual for career practitioners (first ed.). Cap Town: Juta & Co.

Cottrell, T. (2011). Moving on: Salaries and managing turnover. The Bottom Line: Managing Library Finances, 24(3), 187-191.

Dalsem, S. V. (2009). Maturity policies of CEO severance contracts and forced internal turnover. Managerial Finance, 35(9), 772-783.

Dalton, D. R., Hill, J. W., & Ramsay, R. J. (1997). Women as managers and partners: Context specific predictors of turnover in international public accounting firms. A Journal of Practice & Theory, 16, 29-50.

Dalton, D. R., Todor, W. D., & Karckhardt, D. M. (1982). Turnover overstated: The functional taxonomy. The Academy of Management Review, 7, 117-123.

Dess, G. G., & Shaw, J. D. (2001). Voluntary turnover, social capital, and organizational performance. The Academy of Management Review, 26(3), 446-456.

Dousin, O., Collins, N., & Kler, B. K. (2019). Work-life balance, employee job performance and satisfaction among doctors and nurses in Malaysia. International Journal of Human Resource Studies, 9(4), 306-319.

Evans, L. (1998). Teacher Morale, Job Satisfaction and Motivation. London: SAGE Publications.

Griffeth, R. W., Hom, P. W., & Gaertner, S. (2000). A meta-analysis of antecedents and correlates of employee turnover: Update, moderator tests, and research implications for the next millennium. Journal of Management, 26(3), 463-488.

Gustainiene, L., & Endriulaitiene, A. (2009). Job satisfaction and subjective health among sales managers. Baltic Journal of Management, 4(1), 51-65.

Hair, J. F., Anderson, R. E., Tatham, R. L. & William, C. (1998). Black (1998), Multivariate data analysis, Upper Saddle River, NJ: Prentice Hall.

Hughes, J., & Bozionelos, N. (2007). Work-life balance as source of job dissatisfaction and withdrawal attitudes: An exploratory study on the views of male workers. Personnel Review, 36(1), 145-154.

Ismail, A., Dousin, O., Girardi, A., Ahmad, Z. A., Shariff, M. N., Majid, A. H., Ibrahim, Z. (2009). Empirically testing the relationship between income distribution, perceived value of money and pay satisfaction. Intangible Capital, 5(3), 235-258.

Iverson, R. D. (1999). An event history analysis of employee turnover: The case of hospital employees in Australia. Human Resource Management Review, 9(4), 397-418.

Judge, T. A. (1993). Does affective disposition moderate the relationship between job satisfaction and voluntary turnover? Journal of Applied Psychology, 78(3), 395-401.

Katz, R., & Maanan, J. V. (1977). The loci of work satisfaction: Job interaction and policy. Human Relation, 30, 469-486.

Khalida, R., & Safitri, N. (2016). The effect of person-organization fit on turnover intention with job satisfaction as mediating variable. International Journal of Administrative Science & Organization, 23(3), 120-130.

Koch, J. L., & Steers, R. M. (1978). Job attachment, satisfaction, and turnover among public sector employees. Journal of Vocational Behavior, 12(1), 119-128.

Kristof, A. L. (1996). Person-organization fit: An integrative review of its conceptualizations, measurement, and implications. Personnel Psychology, 49(1), 1-49.

Mahdi, A. F., Zin, M. Z. M., Nor, M. R. M., Sakat, A. A., & Naim, A. S. A. (2012). The relationship between job satisfaction and turnover intention. American Journal of Applied Sciences, 9(9), 1518-1526.

Mano-Negrin, R., & Tzafrir, S. S. (2004). Job search modes and turnover. Career Development International, 9(5), 442-458.

March, J. G., & Simon, H. A. (1958). Organizations. New York: Wiley.

Marques, J., Dhiman, S., & King, R. (2007). Spirituality in the Workplace: What It Is, Why It Matters, How to Make It Work for You: Personhood Press.

McElroy, J. C., Morrow, P. C., & Rude, S. N. (2001). Turnover and organizational performance: A comparative analysis of the effects of voluntary, involuntary, and reduction-in-force turnover. Journal of Applied Psychology, 86(6), 1294-1299.

Meglino, B. M., Ravlin, E. C., & Adkins, C. L. (1989). A work values approach to corporate culture: A field test of the value congruence process and its relationship to individual outcomes. Journal of Applied Psychology, 74(3), 424-432.

Mobley, W. H., Horner, S. O., & Hollingsworth, A. T. (1978). Ation of evaluation of precursors of hospital employee turnover. Journal of Applied Psychology, 63(4), 408-414.

Mottaz, C. J. (1988). Determinants of organizational commitment. Human Relation, 41, 467-482.

Nourayi, M. M., & Mintz, S. M. (2008). Tenure, firm's performance, and CEO's compensation. Managerial Finance, 34(8), 524-536.

Park, H. Y., Dankwa, J. O., & Bishop, D. R. (1994). Organizational and environmental determinants of functional and dysfunctional turnover: Practical and research implications. Human Relations, 47(3), 353-366.

Park, J. S., & Kim, T. H. (2009). Do types of organizational culture matter in nurse job satisfaction and turnover intention. Leadership in Health Services, 22(1), 20-38.

Piaralal, N. K., Mat, N., Piaralal, S. K., & Bhatti, M. A. (2014). Human resource management factors and service recovery performance in Malaysian life insurance industry: Exploring the moderating effects of employment status. European Journal of Training and Development, 38(6), 524-552.

Podsakoff, P. M., & Organ, D. W. (1986). Self-reports in organizational research: Problems and prospects, Journal of Management, 12(4), 531-44.

Podsakoff, P. M., MacKenzie, S. B., Lee, J. Y., & Podsakoff, N. P. (2003). Common method biases in behavioral research: a critical review of the literature and recommended remedies, Journal of Applied Psychology, 88(5), 879.

Porter, L. W., & Steers, R. M. (1973). Organizational work and personal factors in employee turnover and absenteeism. Psychological Bulletin, 80, 151-176.

Porter, L. W., Steers, R. M., Mowday, R. T., & Boulian, P. V. (1974). Organizational commitment, job satisfaction, and turnover among psychiatric technicians. Journal of Applied Psychology, 59(5), 603-609.

Price, J. L. (1977). The Study of Turnover: Iowa State University Press (Ames).

Price, J. L. (1989). The impact of turnover on the organization. Work and Occupations, 16(4), 461-473.

Robbins, S. P., & Judge, T. A. (2019). Organizational Behavior, 18th Ed. Pearson Education, United Kingdom.

Sang, K. J. C., Ison, S. G., & Dainty, A. R. J. (2009). The job satisfaction of UK architects and relationships with work-life balance and turnover intentions. Engineering Construction and Architectural Managment, 16(3), 288-300.

Savickas, M. L., Nota, L., Rossier, J., Dauwalder, J.-P., Duarte, M. E., Guichard, J., et al. (2009). Life designing: A paradigm for career construction in the 21st century. Journal of Vocational Behavior, 1-12.

Schneider, B., Goldstiein, H. W., & Smith, D. B. (1995). The ASA framework: An update. Personnel Psychology, 48(4), 747-773.

Sekaran, U., & Bougie, R. (2003). Research methods for business: A skill building approach, John Wiley and Sons Inc., New York.

Steers, R. M., & Mowday, R. T. (1981). Employee turnover and post-decision accommodation process. In L. L. Cummings & B. M. Staw (Eds.), Research in Organizational Behavior (1, 235-281). Greenwich: JAI Press.

Sukriket, P. (2014). The relationship between job satisfaction and turnover intention of Thai software programmers in Bangkok, Thailand. AU Journal of Management, 12(2), 42-52.

Tian-Foreman, W. (2009). Job satisfaction and turnoverin the Chinese retail industry. Chinese Management Studies, 3(4), 356-378.

Toker, B. (2011). Job satisfaction of academic staff: An empirical study on Turkey. Quality Assurance in Education, 156-169.

Townsend, K. (2007). Recruitment, training and turnover: another call centre paradox. Personnel Review, 36(3), 476-490.

Waldmeir, P. (2012). China workers discover there's life after luoci. Retrieved 12 March, 1012, from

Weiss, H. M. (2002). Deconstructing job satisfaction: Separating evaluations, beliefs and affective experiences. Human Resource Management Review, 12(2), 173-194.

Wells, J. E., & Peachey, J. W. (2011). Turnover intentions: Do leadership behaviors and satisfaction with the leader matter? Team Performance Management, 17(1/2), 23-40.

Yang, C., Ma, Q., & Hu, L. (2011). Job embeddedness: A new perspective to predict voluntary turnover. Nankai Business Review International, 2(4), 418-446.

Yean, T. F. & Yahya, K. K. (2013). The influence of human resource management practices and career strategy on career satisfaction of insurance agents. International Journal of Business and Society, 14(2), 193.

Zeffane, R., Ibrahim, M. E., & Mehairi, R. A. (2008). Exploring the differential impact of job satisfaction on employee attendance and conduct: The case of a utility company in the United Arab Emirates. Employee Relations, 30(3), 237-250.



Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 4.0 International License.

International Journal of Human Resource Studies  ISSN 2162-3058


Copyright © Macrothink Institute  

To make sure that you can receive messages from us, please add the '' domain to your e-mail 'safe list'. If you do not receive e-mail in your 'inbox', check your 'bulk mail' or 'junk mail' folders.