Date of Final Oral Examination (Defense)
Type of Culminating Activity
Master of Science in Organizational Performance and Workplace Learning
Organizational Performance and Workplace Learning
Lisa Giacumo, Ph.D.
Anthony Marker, Ph.D.
Steve Villachica, Ph.D.
The purpose of this research study was to investigate how mentoring is measured and assessed in the workplace by reviewing and synthesizing qualitative, quantitative and mixed methods studies that appear in the professional literature. Mentoring programs are common practice in the workplace. The one-on-one nature of a formal mentoring program creates outcomes that benefit the protégé throughout their career in three ways: onboarding, retention at an organization, and career advancement. However, mentoring programs are expensive, both in terms of direct monetary cost and the time it takes to complete the tasks associated with mentoring, making measurement of outcomes critical for organizations. The primary question of this study was: how do organizations assess the outcomes of mentoring programs? There were three sub-questions that will provide the details to the primary question: what are the assessed outcomes of mentoring programs; what quantitative measures and scales do organizations use to assess mentoring programs; how do organizations qualitatively assess mentoring programs?
The study was conducted using a systematic multiple studies review (MSR) to answer the research questions. The researcher followed the seven steps of the MSR process as outlined by Petticrew and Roberts (2006). The researcher used the systematic process to narrow an initial search result of 4,795 articles down to the final twenty which included qualitative, quantitative and mixed methods research written between 2012 and 2018 about outcomes of participants in formal mentor programs in the business environment.
The key results found during this study were that organizations have measured mentor program outcomes by focusing on seven key themes: career resilience, career success, employee engagement, mutual development, personal learning, protégé satisfaction and professional exposure. Of those themes, the most measured outcome themes by quantitative methods were career success, professional exposure and personal learning. Qualitative assessment in the studies used in this MSR focused on career success and mutual development. Fifteen of the seventeen qualitative studies in this MSR measured outcomes of mentoring by survey of the protégé and/or mentor. The remaining two qualitative studies measured outcomes by extant data. Both qualitative studies assessed mentoring outcomes via interview. The mixed methods study used both interview and survey.
The desired benefits and the expense of formal mentoring programs show the importance of evaluating the outcomes. This MSR shows that mentoring can be evaluated successfully using quantitative methods, especially by survey, and qualitatively, especially by interview. When determining what to evaluate, an organization needs to consider which outcomes to focus on then align their study to those specific themes, as the studies in this MSR have modeled. Rather than focusing on only the quality of the mentoring experience or satisfaction with mentoring, evaluation should focus tying the mentoring experience to outcomes like job satisfaction, level of employee engagement, and adjustment to new job environments to show the organizational impact of a formal mentor program.
Morgan, Mark Douglas, "Measurement of Mentoring Program Outcomes: A Systematic Multiple Studies Review" (2020). Boise State University Theses and Dissertations. 1657.