853 Development of an intervention for nurses’ sustainable employability: a focus group study

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Abstract

Introduction

In today’s Western world, people have to work longer before they can retire and the working population is ageing. In healthcare, due to an increase in complexity, severity and extent of the demand for health care, it is of great importance to invest in retention of nurses, who are considered particularly vulnerable in staying employable.

Introduction

A structured dialogue between employee and supervisor is seen as promising opportunity to improve sustainable employability of nurses and the corresponding required working behaviour. In order to accomplish so-called ‘joint ownership’, composing an intervention programme will be planned in joint effort by a constructive dialogue between employee and supervisor. The aim of this qualitative study was assess the needs of employees and supervisors towards the aforementioned approach to improve sustainable employability of nurses.

Method

A structured needs assessment was performed to answer the question of what are the realistic, attainable and useful characteristics of an intervention, in which nurses and their supervisors have a constructive dialogue on sustainable employability. The so-called Vitality Scan is filled out beforehand and used as a starting point of the dialogue, during which customised follow-up actions are arranged if appropriate. We performed six focusgroup interviews, three amongst employees (n=13) and three amongst supervisors (n=15). Qualitative data analysis was performed using Atlas.ti.

Results

Both employees and supervisors perceived a safe psychosocial working environment as most essential. We found a positive attitude and intention towards the characteristics of the Vitality Scan and dialogue. The (time) effort and amount of self-efficacy amongst supervisors were considered potential barriers as well as facilitators. Thorough training of the supervisors was considered necessary.

Conclusion

Nurses and supervisors are positive towards working on sustainable employability of nursing staff using the designed intervention. Several existing facilitators and barriers in the organisation were addressed and practical improvements were suggested.

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