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CNA’s Dynamic Decision Model for Servicemember Retention

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CNA’s retention models have helped the Department of Defense make personnel policy choices for more than half a century. This work has culminated in a retention model with the flexibility to evaluate the widest possible range of policy options: the Dynamic Decision Model (DDM).

CNA’s DDM gives personnel leaders a decision-making edge through its four key attributes:

  • Comprehensive: It quantifies retention impacts of monetary, non-monetary, and even unobservable factors.
  • Dynamic: It considers how servicemembers react not only to the most immediate incentive package but also to the prospect of incentives at multiple points along a career path.
  • Structural: It more successfully isolates the impact of a policy option than other, “predictive” models.
  • Reusable: It can be used to evaluate new policy questions within hours or weeks, rather than the months required to develop a traditional, one-off policy analysis model.

The DDM focuses on policy levers, estimating the willingness of servicemembers to reenlist based on financial incentives, career expectations, economic conditions when they joined the service, and their inherent taste for military service. It helps answer three questions that are vital for meeting endstrength and manning requirements:

  • What numbers will be retained under the status quo?
  • Which policy changes will influence retention, and by how much?
  • How will retention changes affect future manning and endstrength?
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  • Publication Date: 5/14/2021