Through this program, 13 initiatives were evaluated that were intended to retain experienced nurses, which fall into three categories:
- Ergonomic projects, such as lift teams and anything that reduces the physical burden of nursing
- Human resource strategies to improve organizational culture
- Strategies that involved employee wellness, clinical technology, or leadership development
While no single initiative or strategy has been identified as a silver bullet, the program has found several strategies that when combined with an organizational culture that values experienced workers and leadership support create an environment that encourages experienced workers to stay.
Successful strategies include:
- Closed staffing: A model that keeps nurses on their home units rather than assigning them to other units as needed.
- Giving experienced nurses more control over patient flow, discharge and admission..
- Staffing for frequent peak occupancy rather than average occupancy.
- Wellness at work programs that promote wellness through incentives, fitness center memberships, and other components.
- Virtual ICUs that allow experienced nurses to use computers to monitor ICU patients at multiple sites .
- Renewing and reframing older nurses' practices, such as the three-day, off-site educational experience that rewards experienced nurses with an opportunity to renew their nursing practice.
- Patient lifting devices and other labor-saving technologies
- Centralized workstations and decreased need to walk long hallways
- Increased scheduling flexibility
- Developing new career paths