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Recruit and retain. Evaluation of the Armed Forces' personnel policy tools aimed at newly hired soldiers and sailors

Research project
Active research
Project size
2 600 000
Project period
2017 - 2021
Project owner
Department of Sociology and Work Science

Short description

Life and career planning (LoK) for employees in the Armed Forces (FM) is a tool that intends to support employee development and FM's skills supply. It is part of the concept of coherent career planning, which aims to retain employees for as long as possible, and to contribute to the perception that FM is an attractive employer. Since 2012, the tool has also been applied to the group of newly hired soldiers and sailors. However, the dropout rate among new employees during training is relatively extensive. The question is why, and whether the Life and Career Planning tool works in a container perspective.

Researchers at the department have conducted several previous research-based studies of FM's personnel policy tools, then mainly aimed at older employees. There is a good familiarity with FM's organization and personnel policy in the research group. The current project includes interviews with soldiers and sailors, LoK supervisors, HR managers and line managers in different parts of the organization. A cohort of new employees will be followed for a three-year period. The evaluation has a summative and formative approach, and is process-oriented. It follows the model for evaluation which is called "realistic evaluation" and which consists, in simple terms, of three elements: mechanisms, context and results. The target group analysis takes place using, for example, push-pull-jump theories for understanding mobility in the labor market. Furthermore, special hypotheses are added against the background of young people's lifestyle and views on careers in particular. The lives of young people have changed relatively sharply in recent decades. Important contexts, such as education, labor market experiences and patterns of dependence, have been transformed in various ways. Young people are spending an increasing proportion of their lives in education and more and more are also acquiring higher education. The transition from youth to adulthood has become more extensive in time and the previously linear movement from education to work and an independent life has become complex and fragmented.


Project leader
Roland Kadefors, Email:

Project members
Jan Holmer, Email:
Gunnar Gillberg, Email:
Anders Östebo, Email: