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J Nurs Adm. 2011 Dec;41(12):531-7. doi: 10.1097/NNA.0b013e3182378d6c.

Strategies for retaining midcareer nurses.

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University of Toronto, Ontario, Canada.


One method of reducing predicted shortages because of the aging nursing workforce is to increase retention. Few studies have examined the unique needs of midcareer nurses. A mixed-method approach including surveys and focus groups was used to identify key retention strategies and desires for midcareer nurses. Salary, benefits, positive working relationships, flexible scheduling, and the opportunity for continued education were identified as key retention strategies from this study. Registered nurses in this study reported higher perceptions of their work and work environment than licensed practical nurses did. Differences in work outcomes were evident across sectors, with community nurses reporting higher levels of job satisfaction and perceptions of work quality than nurses in acute and long-term care. Findings suggest that recruitment opportunities may exist with midcareer nurses seeking employment to return to work after time off to have a family. Proactive retention policies that focus on the needs of midcareer nurses would demonstrate a commitment and interest in keeping them in their work positions and in the profession.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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