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Work satisfaction and absenteeism of nursing staff--comparative study of 1021 nurse trainees and nurses

Work satisfaction and absenteeism of nursing staff--comparative study of 1021 nurse trainees and nurses

Gesundheitswesen ) 65(11): 620-628

To analyse the high level of absenteeism among nursing trainees compared with nursing staff. Unlike previous studies, the present study focussed on work satisfaction and motivation. Specifically, combining satisfaction with absenteeism was a novel approach. For assessing work satisfaction, a standardised form with 73 items in four areas was drafted and checked in a pre-test (n = 150). 861 nurses and 159 trainees were interviewed. The absenteeism data given by the nursing staff were compared with the 'missing' records of the personnel department. In all areas it was found that, in particular, problems of organisation, personnel management and working atmosphere in the hospital were a burden on the employees. In detail, however, there were considerable differences between nurses and trainees in respect of appraisal. Work organisation: Although trainees rated work organisation aspects lower than nurses, direct relationship to work satisfaction was less pronounced. For the trainees, improvements are imperative in respect of active self-responsibility. Leadership/co-operation: Trainees rated supervisor behaviour and working atmosphere lower than their colleagues. There was a direct relation to satisfaction and absenteeism. Workload/stress: Although their responsibility was less, a larger proportion of the trainees felt stressed. This was directly related to work satisfaction and absenteeism. Fluctuation and turnover: 44% of the trainees would be prepared to work up to the age of retirement, but only 25% of the qualified staff. Nevertheless, three-quarters of the trainees and two-thirds of the nurses would choose the same profession again. Hence, unfavourable local (internal) circumstances led to the discontent and not the profession as such. The extremely high absenteeism of nursing trainees calls for action on the part of school and hospital management. There is a need for better information and care before and during professional training, because workload will be higher at the end of the training. The study indicates possibilities of increasing work satisfaction and decreasing absenteeism of trainees.

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Accession: 050987752

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PMID: 14639519

DOI: 10.1055/s-2003-44628

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