All Theses, Dissertations, and Capstone Projects

Year of Award



Master of Business Administration (MBA)


College of Business & Professional Studies

Degree Program



Business Administration


Civil Service, Government, Productivity, Performance, Turnover, Inflation, HR, Management


Motivating public employees began with the Pendleton Act of 1883, from which the Civil Service law was derived. The Merit System evolved from this law. As states and municipalities adopted a Merit System for selecting public employees, officeholders became more competitive and competent.

A Merit System provides equal opportunity for all who can qualify. Through the years this law was refined to make it more meritorious. Major reforms occurred in the 70's with the Intergovernmental Personnel Act of 1970 and the Civil Service Reform Act of 1978 with Affirmative Action policies. These reforms involved making the rating system more objective, increasing productivity, linking salary to performance, offering training where it is most effective, and re-emphasizing ethical behavior.

The major emphasis during the 80's is productivity improvement, which has been greatly facilitated by converting manual methods to computer processing. Costs were reduced, errors reduced, and perfect records produced in a fraction of the usual time. Employees have had to adapt to the computer age.

Motivating public employees today is accomplished by applying the provisions of the Intergovernmental Personnel Act of 1970, which dealt with recruiting, selecting, and advancing employees on the basis of their knowledge and abilities, providing appropriate training, and retaining them for satisfactory performance, assuring fairness without personal prejudice, or political influence. Special attention can be directed toward understanding unique situations and attitudes, and helping employees adjust to their environment, especially computer technology. Accomplishing these goals takes time as supervisors must be trained in new methods of evaluation. Many older employees will be retained on the basis of their adequacy, while many younger, more highly educated will excel to greater achievement. The young employee enters government service better qualified, capable of competing in a true Merit System, and not dependent on the favors of a Spoils System.

Document Type

Restricted Thesis

Creative Commons License

Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 4.0 License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 4.0 License.


Available to Fontbonne users only. Please log in with your id + password.

Free My Thesis

If you are the author of this work and would like to make it openly accessible to all, please click the button above.