5 Ways to Reduce Nursing Turnover in Year One

Turnover among first-year nurses remains a huge cost driver and source of frustration for hospital managers. Here are five best practices for engaging and retaining this vital segment of a hospital's workforce.

6 comments on "5 Ways to Reduce Nursing Turnover in Year One"
vdutton (3/4/2011 at 2:53 PM)

This is just more Hogwash! - The main problem with retaining nurses, patient safety, drug errors and nurses leaving the bedside (Hospitals do not hire enough nurses to safely take care of the patients)Hospitals are the biggest obstacle to improved healthcare.
Beth Boynton, RN, MS (2/12/2011 at 12:51 PM)

Great article! I especially like that you are including "employee feedback" in #3. I would add, "look for ways to invite and integrate input from staff for any problem solvin". It increases buy-in, role models collaboration, increases creative options, enhances outcome success, and builds assertiveness! Beth Boynton, RN, MS, author of "Confident Voices: The Nurses' Guide to Improving Communication & Creating Positive Workplaces"
Christina M. Guillen-Cook, MBA,BS, RN (2/8/2011 at 5:40 PM)

The key point that was not mentioned, was how hospital administrators[INVALID]managers, directors, CNOs, CEOs, etc.[INVALID]need to actually engage in practices that let nurses know how valued and respected all nurses are, new and seasoned, if they want to retain them. As I nurse of over 30 years, I continue to witness the chronic mismanagement of our profession. What nursing needs is actual leaders. Leaders who care about each other and the profession. Leaders who advocate for the profession. Leaders who can inspire and bring out the best in all nurses. I'm tired of nursing managers who cares only about themselves, their next job or the next rung on the professinal ladder. The current behavior among to many nursing managers is killing our profession. We need nurses who care about the profession, nurses and can advocate for our value in the workplace. Until we have that kind of leadership, we will continue to have nursing leave the profession and who can blame them.
trish (2/8/2011 at 1:55 PM)

I am sure part of the reason there is such a high turnover in the first few years is because, these younger RNs are seeing how they will no doubt be treated once they become seasoned and they don't like it. The administrative and executive staff need to realize that attracting new staff by pulling perks for older staff is not a good idea. (Even if on paper it looks like a fabulous idea)
Kelly (2/8/2011 at 10:58 AM)

Nowhere in this article is anything mentioned about ratio's. You keep the ratios manageable and the workload manageable; that plays a large role in reducing turnover. Give someone more work than is manageable and their stress level increases.
Barbara Durocher, MSN, RN (2/8/2011 at 10:47 AM)

It's deja vu all over again. As a veteran RN and former nursing director of an acute care hospital in the early 80's, reading the intro to this article made me remember the programs my nurse leadership team initiated to increase our retention rate during a terrible nurse shortage. Some of those programs included competency based hiring and orientation, extended orientation, internship for new grads, nurse refresher courses, monetary compensation for specialty certification, a participatory management philosophy, etc. These programs worked because they showed the nurses they were valued. Our turnover rate decreased from a long-standing 40+% to a single digit percentage in about two years. We actually had a waiting list of nurses wanting to come to work at our facility. And, this was at a time when wages were frozen at our facility. I did a cost benefit analysis back then and it definitely favored the programs due to the decrease in ongoing orientation costs incurred due to constantly hiring nurses to fill those many vacancies. Thanks for sharing your insight with this generation of nurse administrators.


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