Retaining nurses in a changing health care environment: The role of job embeddedness and self-efficacy

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Abstract

Background:

Because nurses are on the front lines of care delivery, they are subject to frequent changes to their work practices. This change-laden environment puts nurses at higher risk for turnover. Given the frequent disruption to the way nurses perform their jobs, change-related self-efficacy (CSE), or confidence that one can handle change, may be vital to their retention.

Purpose:

The purpose of this article is to examine the roles of CSE and job embeddedness in reducing turnover intentions among nurses. Specifically, this article tests a model in which CSE is the intervening mechanism through which job embeddedness influences turnover intentions.

Methods:

Drawing on a sample of 207 nurses working in the medical/surgical unit of a major metropolitan hospital in the United States, this study employs OLS regression to test for direct effects of job embeddedness and CSE on turnover intentions and bias-corrected bootstrapping to test for the indirect effects of job embeddedness on turnover intentions through CSE.

Findings:

Results show that CSE is directly linked to turnover intentions, and the effects of job embeddedness on turnover intentions become fully manifest through CSE.

Practice Implications:

Improved nurse retention may lead to stable patient care and less disruption in service delivery. Improved retention also benefits health care organizations financially, as costs of replacing a nurse can exceed 100% of the salary for the position. Given the shortage of nurses in some geographic areas, retention remains an important goal.

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