Is it Time for a Nursing Career Change?
So, you’ve been on the job for a couple of years or a couple dozen years now, and you think it is time to move on, but how do you know? Nurse turnover has been a topic of discussion for several years as the healthcare industry continues to face increases in demand and staffing shortages. Studies have been conducted to determine what cause nursing staff dissatisfaction and what leads them to leave their jobs. Data shows that 33% of new nurses leave their first job within two years. Let’s look at some of the reasons why you might consider changing jobs.
Unfriendly, Unsupportive Workplace. Surprisingly, one of the biggest factors causing nurses to consider leaving their current job is an unfriendly or unsupportive workplace. This result is not surprising in that it is a factor in causing nursing turnover. But, with staffing and turnover being such a cost factor and patient care issue, it is surprising that many organizations are not recognizing the role that culture plays in workforce satisfaction. Organizations that promote supportiveness between staff and has developed a culture of teamwork and accountability are experiencing lower rates of turnover and a staff that is more engaged and satisfied with their position.
Fatigue and Exhaustion. A direct correlation to nursing turnover is the fatigue and exhaustion brought about by a hospital being short staffed. The negative impact of chronic short staffing extends to the health and well-being of both the patients being served and the staff serving them. Nurses report a feeling of being afraid to answer their phone when they aren’t on shift because they fear being called into work. Nurses in these environments report feelings of stress and burnout being factors in their decision to seek a new position.
Poor Management. Organizations that promote the wrong candidates or do not spend the time and resources to train their managers properly are sowing the seeds of staff discontent. Just because an individual is a talented nurse, doesn’t mean that they can step into a supervisory position with little or no training. Learning to be a good supervisor or manager takes time and training. When asked, many nurses who leave an organization or change positions within an organization, they will point to poor management as a prime reason.
Boredom. For some nurses, every position comes with an expiration date. These are the nurses that are driven to seek out new challenges and often find themselves wondering what it’s like to work in a new specialty or different facility. A good manager or a company with an inclusive, team-based environment can usually find ways to control that “wanderlust” by offering new opportunities or challenges to keep staff engaged and motivated.
Fortunately for nurses, there are many opportunities available. One benefit of working in healthcare is that it is experiencing high-demand and you can make the changes necessary when some of the issues we’ve discussed are happening in your career. If you are feeling the effects of burnout or experiencing more bad days at work than good days, then it is time to consider a change.
This is an important topic for discussion, and we want to hear your thoughts and opinions on the reasons behind high nursing turnover. Share your opinions in the comment section below and tell us why you have changed jobs in the past or why you are considering it now. We would also like you to share stories of what things an employer did or does to keep staff engaged and satisfied. You can also share your stories on our Facebook page.
Disrespect. They don't seem to be teaching respect for others in the classes now days, I was a nurses assistant then a certified nurses assistant for 15 years before going to school to become a LPN. I understand that the LPN is supposed to be on the way out but at this time we are still here, passing meds, doing dressing changes, taking off orders, doing IVs, feeding tubes, foleys and trying to give to our patients and employers with very little thanks, but when did it become ok for a nurses assistant to treat the nurse who they work under as an underling? Its bad enough that we are treated like that by RNs, DONs, and administrators but by the people who are supposed to be helping us care for our patients? I have been treated badly many places but I stayed because I had CNAs that knew the job, didn't take short cuts, didn't treat people like they were stupid or interfereing. Not so with the latest group of CNAs and I asked a large group of CNAs if they are taught that their direct supervisor is the nurse they work with, they said no they didn't know that. When did that change? I'm leaving my current position because of the attitude of the CNAs and the feeling I'm nothing to them and to the administrator.
I have experiencd alot of racism and little to no respect or teamwork from co workers. They only offer causian Nurses a chance to advance to a new position and pay them higher rates. NURSE to patient ratio is extremely high to the point of burn out ,stress and health issues. Poor management and leadership skills by Supervisors who make decision from a personal and not professional stand point. I Have worked with some awesome Nurses and We feel all alone.
Seasones Nurse Experience not valued or recognized. Nursing is a series of building blocks of experience. Typically all nurses start out on Med Surg to gain experience then explore other areas of nursing. Either they are trying to find a specialty or continue building upon the latest experience,but when years of experience seems non existent to employers amd agencies makes me wanna consider a career change. Demands of higher education doesnt make it better. School isnt an option for some. What happened to experience is the Best Teacher?..