Nursingleadership are faced with a shortage of clinically prepared nurses as well as astruggle to retain experienced nurses. Someof the problems nurse leaders face are new graduate nurses require extensivetraining and education to prepare them for the role of the bedside nurse andthe lack of experienced nurses applying for acute care positions. As a result, hospitals are faced with astaffing problem resulting higher nurse patient ratios which lead to increasednurse burnout and job dissatisfaction (Twigg, & McCullough, 2014). In order to address the nursing shortage,nurse leaders should plan measures to address a variety of issues surroundingthe nursing shortage. Looking for creative new ways to recruit and retain staffand improve work environments need to become a priority. Once a plan is developed, nurse leadershipshould review it often to keep ahead of any planned staff losses or otherfactors affecting hiring and retention.
After review of hiring trends, nurseturnover, and a review of the local area, the strengths, weaknesses,opportunities, and threats will be discussed. This paper will discuss astrategic plan to improve staffing at the local hospital and will focus on nurseretention, education, improving work environment, and marketing strategies toimprove nurse staffing levels at the local hospital and will identifystakeholders in the process. StrategicPlanning Astrategic plan has been developed to address the nursing shortage. The maingoals are to improve nurse retention, education, and improving workenvironment, and develop marketing strategies to aid in competition with otherlocal healthcare facilities. The stakeholders involved will be nursing leadersfrom each nursing department, the hospital’s Human Resources nurse recruiters,members of the marketing department, nurse educators, and some representationfrom the front-line nursing staff. Meetings with the local nursing schools willbe held to discuss a feeder program for a new Nurse Residency program andeducation requirements. Nurse leaders are included in this group because theyexperience the difficulties of retention such as finding shift coverage,limited experienced nurse applications, and high turnover rates (Armmer, 2017).
In addition, nurse leaders need to be able to appreciate feedback about thework environment of their units. Nurse recruiters and the marketing departmentare key in the strategic plan due to resources such as contacts at nursingschools, assistance for job fairs and interviews, and advertisements. Nurseeducators are involved to discuss requirements for new hire orientation andimproving the program to better prepare new staff and to lead development of aNurse Residency program to aid in preparing new graduate nurses to performclinically.
Front-line staff input isimportant in gathering information as what factors would help them to decide tostay at the hospital and also to discuss what makes them want to leave. Forexample, pay and benefits, work environment, and adequately staffed shifts. A thorough assessment of strengths,weaknesses, opportunities, and threats was performed and a list compiled by thestakeholders. The strengths include being a diverse facility providing a widerange of services, located near a reputable medical school and near severalnursing schools, and up to date electronic charting systems. Some weaknessesare high nurse turnover rate, inadequate shift staffing, deficient staffeducation or development, no formal orientation program. Opportunities are developingmentor and orientation programs, implement staff continuing education and clinicalskills courses, improve staff benefits and incentive pay for preceptors.Threats are the two other hospitals within three miles, providing similarservices, higher pay at other facilities, adequately staffed shifts, newgraduate nurses who are not prepared clinically to perform as a bedside nurse.
The top two priorities will bedeveloping nurse education to include a Nurse Residency program and improvebenefits for nursing staff. In order toimprove nurse education, efforts need to be made to engage nursing staff uponhire with a formal orientation program and a mentor program. The orientationprogram and Nurse Residency program is to help new nurses transition into thefacility and to ensure clinical skills are adequate to build the confidence ofthe nurse (Van Camp, & Chappy, 2017). A mentor will be assigned to assist new staffwhen arriving on the unit and for a resource as training begins and throughoutthe first year (Twigg, & McCullough, 2014). A review of existing benefits and acomparison of the benefits of competing facilities to identify shortfalls andareas to improve (Twigg, & McCullough, 2014). Nursing staff should receive incentive pay forprecepting new staff members, uniform allowances should be added, and otherbenefits such as access to gym memberships.
Pay and cost of insurance should bereviewed and compared regularly to stay competitive. Conclusion Nurse hiring and retention is anissue that is plaguing most healthcare facilities. Creating a partnershipbetween nurse leadership and front-line staff in order to enhance nursingpractice is key to staff retention (Armmer, 2017). It takes constant work andeffort starting with nursing leadership to use creative techniques to attract newstaff and retain existing staff. An environment that is empowering, invested ineducation and personal growth, and strives to provide the best in pay andbenefits to the team will retain staff.
The best asset of a healthcare organization is the experience of thenursing staff. Allowing staff room to grow while providing the encouragementand educational tools to do so is investing in people.