Date of Conferral
Base closures and relocations reduce costs to the Department of Defense but necessitate the relocation of personnel, organizations, and functions. When Fort McPherson closed, Fort Bragg received the organization's personnel and equipment. The problem in this study was the lack of knowledge and understanding within the U.S. military, especially among civil service and contractor employees affected by realignments and closures, regarding (a) the decision process to accept or reject offers to relocate, (b) the potential health effects related to relocating, and (c) the effect that personnel relocations and losses have on the military mission. This study is essential because no scholarly research exists that would help individuals to make sound decisions and enable military leadership to understand the impacts to people and missions. The purpose of this qualitative case study was to delve deeply into the personnel issues among those affected by an actual relocation. The conceptual framework included cognitive learning theory, social learning theory, and the theory of planned behavior, all focused on how individuals make decisions. Purposeful sampling was used to select 24 DoD employees from different career fields for semistructured interviews. Transcripts were analyzed, showing that family, retirement, health, and financial factors were the most frequent themes in the decision-making process. The implication for social change is to improve the awareness of all stakeholders in the relocation process regarding the challenges faced by personnel, both assisting people making the decision to relocate and improving communications by military leadership to those affected. The outcome would be a smoother, more effective, and more efficient relocation process and minimal impact on the military mission.