Running head: NURSE RETENTION 1
NURSE RETENTION 3
Southern New Hampshire University: NUR 300
March 17, 2019
Employee retention is a critical professional issue faced by nursing leadership today and reasons for low retention vary across the continuum. Some nurses graduate and begin their career only to determine the profession is not what they thought it would be. Others may experience burnout and subsequently leave the profession. In the first year, an estimated 35 % to 60% of new graduate nurses will leave the profession (Schroyer, Zellers & Abraham, 2016). Other sources state that “the current United States (U.S.) nurse turnover rate is 16.5% and is projected to increase over the next decade” (Mazurenko, Gupte, & Shan, 2015, p.48). The figures may seem insignificant at face value however low nurse retention is fiscally and professionally expensive and has potentially adverse effect on patient-care quality.
The purpose of this paper is threefold- to explore the reasons for low nurse retention, to acknowledge its effects on patient care quality, and to present strategies to combat this professional issue. Aarons, Sommerfeld, and Willging (2011) suggested that recognizing organizational factors as well as adjustable aspects of a workforce that predict employee turnover is a strategy to improve leadership and retention. Whether it is a matter of expectations not being met or dreams turning into disappointment, nursing leadership is tasked with uncovering the reasons for low retention for the sake of the development of the nursing profession. One leader attribute as noted by Yoder-Wise (2015) is the ability to “see possibilities in the midst of challenging, often complex, uncharted, or even dire circumstances” (p.4). Leaders should have the insight and knowledge to identify aspects in the workforce that represent as threats to the overall function and strength of the organization.
Aarons, G. A., Sommerfeld, D. H., & Willging, C. E. (2011). The Soft Underbelly of System
Change: The Role of Leadership and Organizational Climate in Turnover during Statewide Behavioral Health Reform. Psychological Services, 8(4), 269-281.
Mazurenko, O., Gupte, G., & Shan, G. (2015). Analyzing US nurse turnover: Are nurses leaving
their jobs or the profession itself. Journal of Hospital Administration, 4(4), 48-56.
Schroyer, C. C., Zellers, R., & Abraham, S. (2016). Increasing registered nurse retention using mentors in critical care services. The health care manager, 35(3), 251-265
Yoder-Wise, P. S. (2015). Leading and managing in nursing (6th ed.). St. Louis, MO: Mosby,
Inc., an affiliate of Elsevier Inc.