Vacancy Chains as Bundles of Staffing Actions

  • Lawrence T. Pinfield
Part of the Plenum Studies in Work and Industry book series (SSWI)


This chapter, the first of four that comprise Part II, introduces a vacancy chain perspective on ILMs that is elaborated in Chapters 4 through 6. This introduction to Part II extends the stereotypical model of internal labor market (ILM) elements and outcomes presented in Chapter 1 and develops a model of an ideal-type vacancy chain. The representativeness of such ideal-type models is evaluated through a statistical analysis of objective, quantitative attributes of two samples of vacancy chains found in ForestCo’s organization. In this and subsequent chapters, it is argued that the primary defining attribute of a vacancy chain as a component of an ILM is its length, measured as the number of sequentially related employee moves. Relationships between this defining attribute and other characteristics of vacancy chains are also investigated. The three subsequent chapters dealing with vacancy chains report on more complex interpretations of ForestCo’s vacancy chains. These descriptions and analyses are based on the descriptions, comments, and interpretations provided by the managers who made the staffing decisions that comprise each vacancy chain. Thus, the nonstatistical analyses presented in Chapters 4 through 6 focus on the substantive content of staffing decisions and provide information on the micro-processes that accumulate to produce mobility patterns and vacancy chains.


Career Progression Internal Labor Market Vacant Position Employment System Staffing Action 
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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 1995

Authors and Affiliations

  • Lawrence T. Pinfield
    • 1
  1. 1.Simon Fraser UniversityBurnabyCanada

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