One of the biggest challenges hospitals face is turnover of nurses. Keeping qualified, engaged nurses who love their job can save an organization money and impact patient satisfaction. Southampton Hospital in New York has succeeded in overcoming this challenge.
Southampton Hospital is a 100-bed community hospital that employs over 200 nurses. Annually, it admits 6,500 patients, has 25,000 emergency room visits and 750 births. A seasonal influx of patients during the summer tourism months has historically created challenges in staffing and scheduling. Nursing union mandates required many hours of managerial time spent monthly in each unit creating schedules, filling staffing shortages, mediating union concerns over scheduling conflicts and managing the cost of overtime.
To overcome these challenges, Southampton Hospital decided to employ Intrigma’s Efficient Scheduler for Nurses. Since then, the hospital has seen major changes in efficiency and satisfaction among staff and patients.
New scheduling technology has resulted in both a sizable drop in time spent scheduling shifts and a notable increase in nursing staff retention. These two changes have improved the hospital’s overall efficiency.
Dramatically reduced scheduling time.Nurse managers on each unit had been spending 40 hours every month on scheduling. Following implementation of advanced scheduling software, they saw a 90% reduction in nurse manager time devoted not only to creating schedules, but to reducing costly scheduling conflicts. Since schedule requests can now be made online, there are no longer multiple avenues for staff requests to be sent to the nurse managers, which reduces mistakes and saves time.
Lower labor costs and turnover. Research has shown that nursing turnover is costly. The American Nurses Association estimates the cost of turnover of one nurse at $22,000 to $64,000. This cost involves advertising, recruiting, interviewing, hiring, comprehensive orientation and training, plus the lower productivity level of new nurses. Also, nursing turnover can lead to more nursing turnover since nurses leaving one organization may take their friends and coworkers with them. Southampton Hospital has seen a huge annual savings of $300,000 since implementing Intrigma’s Efficient Scheduler for Nurses.
Easier and more efficient scheduling boosts satisfaction among both nursing staff and patients.
Give nurses control of their schedules.Nurses are the lifeblood of hospitals. Yet they often feel undervalued and taken advantage of. Nurses like to have some control over when they work; lack of control and flexibility in the workplace is often cited as a top reason for nurse turnover. Allowing nurses to access their schedule and input scheduling requests from home lets them involve their families in the decision-making process. Employing a collaborative staffing model is a huge step in improving work-life balance for nurses.
Increase Press Ganey patient satisfaction scores. As an added benefit of utilizing Intrigma’s scheduling software, Southampton Hospital saw an increase in Press Ganey patient satisfaction scores from the 80th percentile to the high 90th percentile. With the software, nurses perceive more control over their schedules and in turn feel more valued. This fosters a culture of teamwork and collaboration within the hospital, and happy nurses translate into happy patients.
Nurses are always putting others’ needs ahead of their own. In order for healthcare organizations to recruit and retain these valuable front-line workers, they must give back. Help your nurses help your patients by giving them scheduling software that makes their job a little less stressful.