Human resource management is regarded as one of the fundamental components of the discipline of Public Administration. The employees of an institution are considered to be the most important assets that an institution possesses, primarily because they determine the success or failure of the institution in question. Employee attraction and retention is known to scholars of human resource management as one of the prominent challenges constantly confronting institutions, both public and private. As labour markets become more globalised, the phenomenon of employee mobility surges, which results in these public and private institutions needing to develop and implement measures that would assist them in attracting skilled personnel, whilst also ensuring that they have the ability to retain such personnel. This article will highlight some of the critical issues that influence labour turnover and retention, with particular reference to senior managers in the South African public service.