Healthcare employee retention strategies

Nurse Leader Insider, April 29, 2020

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Healthcare organizations are constantly learning from other industries with regard to many operational areas and functions, including but not limited to standardization, safety, efficiency, supply chain, financial management, and various human resource topics. Healthcare recruitment and retention strategies can also gain wisdom and insights from other industries.

Many industries outside healthcare use prehire interview metrics to indicate whether the new hire is best suited for a particular position and has potential to do the job effectively. In addition to assessing whether the employee is the best fit for the job, these prehire assessments can also alert hiring managers to any areas of opportunity for development of the new employee and assist them in capitalizing on employee strengths. Information gained from prehire assessments can also contribute to individualizing orientation processes for each employee to best meet their onboarding needs.

Some key employee retention strategies learned from industries outside healthcare include:

  • Assign mentors that can provide feedback, guidance, and coaching for new and existing employees.
  • Offer growth and ongoing learning opportunities.
  • Use gamification as a learning strategy.
  • Set aside a quiet room for employees to be able to take a brief relaxing break away from job responsibilities.
  • Provide training for entry level supervisors. How often do we promote nurses with strong clinical skills into supervisory positions without providing adequate orientation to their new roles?
  • Increase flexibility in work environments where possible.
  • Identify workplace stressors and provide training for unit frontline leaders about how to recognize and respond.
  • Have leaders write “thank-you notes” to staff to recognize a job well done.


Editor's note: This is an excerpt from the Nurse Manager's Guide to Retention and Recruitment.

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