Document Type



Doctor of Business Administration


Business Administration

Date of Defense


Graduate Advisor

Tom Kozloski, Ph.D.


Tom Kozloski, Ph.D.

Jennifer W. Chen, Ph.D.

Michele Meckfessel, Ph.D.


Retention in public accounting firms has been and continues to be a top concern in the accounting profession. The direct and indirect cost of turnover; the decrease in accounting enrollment and graduation; the Great Resignation; and changes to work environments due to the pandemic elevate what was already a serious problem into a critical problem for the accounting profession. The size of public accounting firms is a well-used descriptor when employees talk about where they work. The purpose of this study was to examine the role of the size of firm in predicting an employee’s level of job embeddedness and job engagement and the role of job embeddedness and job engagement in predicting an employee’s intention to stay. Many of the elements of a work environment that can increase an employee’s sense of embeddedness and engagement can be changed or altered by firm management. A quantitative survey design was used to gather evidence from full-time accounting professionals working in public accounting firms across the United States. Results suggest that there is a relationship between the size of the firm and job embeddedness and that job embeddedness does significantly predict an employee’s intent to stay with their public accounting firm. Firm management can take direct steps to increase how embedded their employees feel, with their firm and with their community, and in doing so, can address turnover intentions of their employees. This study illustrates the importance of job embeddedness and its impact on turnover intentions within the public accounting firm context.