If your hospital is having problems with nursing turnover, consider this:

Half of all employees who aren’t involved in decision making, aren’t satisfied with advancement, don’t have flexible work schedules, or aren’t compensated with money or other non-monetary awards said they intended to look for a new job the next year.

That’s from a survey by the American Psychological Association (APA), covering workers from all business sectors.

The research said 93 percent of those who felted valued at work were motivated to do better, while only a third of those who did not feel valued felt motivated.

While you may say that’s only common sense, it raises the question of just how widespread the issue may be. The answer is that one in five American workers say they are undervalued.

David W. Ballard, head of APA’s Psychologically Healthy Workplace Program, says “Successful organizations have learned that high performance and sustainable results require attention to the relationships among employee, organization, customer and community.

Forward-thinking employers … are taking steps to create a positive organizational culture where employees feel valued and, in turn, help drive bottom-line results.”

Naturally, this has implications for hospitals, where nursing and physician shortages abound. So what can be done?

1. STRESS — Get one-on-one with employees to determine stress level and burnout. Two out of every five works feel stress on the job. Just showing some understanding can go a long way towards establishing better bonds with your nurses.

2. BURNOUT — Offer support resources, including mentoring and other wellness programs. The results should be well worth the cost when you consider what it takes to train new nurses.

3. OPPORTUNITIES – Providing real pathways to advancement can keep employees motivated and help them stay in place. Provide short term and long term goals for nurses and set them up for success, not failure. Clearly define the expectations required for advancement to avoid morale problems later.

TeleTracking has long recognized the value of employee engagement as it relates to successful implementation of our capacity management software. That’s why we include client employees – and nurses in particular – in our team approach to process redesign. For us, employee involvement has the double benefit of tapping into a critical store of knowledge about current processes and assuring buy-in for changes the team as a whole will recommend. It’s a win-win proposition for everyone.

What is the situation like at your hospital? How do you keep your nurses happy?


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