Decreased Employee Engagement Comprehensive Nursing Essay Example

Decreased Employee Engagement Comprehensive Nursing Essay Example

Decreased employee engagement in a health care organization has an adverse impact on quality of care, patient satisfaction rates, and patient outcomes. Existing literature does not provide a consensus on the definition of workplace engagement or its matrix (Dempsey & Reilly, 2019). However, employee engagement is conceptually linked to a workplace environment that empowers employees to engage in quality improvement, decision making, strategic planning, and change to commit to the patient and community needs and, subsequently, the organizational goals. Dempsey & Reilly (2016) assert that job commitment and satisfaction are essential facets of employee engagement and are evaluated by employees’ level of commitment to an organization and their profession. Other literature defines employee engagement as improved communication and trust (George & Massey, 2020). In healthcare organizations, employee engagement is exemplified by nurses’ commitment to providing care and promoting their profession within the healthcare setting.(Decreased Employee Engagement Comprehensive Nursing Essay Example)

Effective employee engagement is a central nursing and care delivery success factor. However, employee engagement is determined by workplace culture, workload, leadership style, decision-making approach, career development opportunities, job stress, and extent of organizational change (Sherman, 2017). The healthy work environment (HWE) by the American Association of Critical-Care Nurses (AACN) is associated with improved staff engagement. HWE is characterized by appropriate staffing, retention, less distress, and workplace violence (AACN, n.d.). Due to the dynamic nature of healthcare, nurse leaders face the challenge of motivating their staff to participate in organizational activities to achieve clinical excellence. Engaged staff exemplifies a passion for their work, a high commitment, and a willingness to help their employees succeed. (Decreased Employee Engagement Comprehensive Nursing Essay Example)

Decreased Employee Engagement Comprehensive Nursing Essay Example
Decreased Employee Engagement Comprehensive Nursing Essay Example

The Problem

The conversations and interactions with team members and patients show decreased employee engagement within our unit and the organization. Some of my colleagues, particularly nurse leaders, are openly frustrated in their efforts to improve commitment and engagement rates within units and teams. Besides, some indicators of poor engagement include poor engagement and interactions with management, poor retention and high turnover rates, and low job satisfaction rates. The consequences include poor nursing-patient ratios, shortages, and long shift hours. According to the Nursing Advisory Board, about 32.8% and 7.4% of nurses consider themselves engaged and disengaged in the workplace, respectively (Hilton & Sherman, 2015). The lack of employee engagement dramatically impacts the quality of care, patient safety, outcomes, and satisfaction rates. From the patients’ perspective, satisfaction surveys indicate poor service satisfaction rates and long wait times.(Decreased Employee Engagement Comprehensive Nursing Essay Example)

The present healthcare landscape is characterized by the need to reduce operating costs, innovativeness, and improvement of care standards at the expense of the welfare of the caregivers (Hilton & Sherman, 2015). However, the growing and underlying issue is a lack of employee engagement which contributes to the loss of productivity and reduced retention. The latter is a significant national issue and a determinant of employee engagement. The National Healthcare Retention & RN Staffing Report indicated a 16.4% rate of nurses’ turnover (Dempsey & Reilly, 2016). Consequently, the country incurs between $36,900 and $573,000 turnover costs for registered bedside nurses. Employee engagement is an integral attribute that will enable health care organizations to meet the needs of the changing patient and community demographics. Within the organization, it is imperative to devise approaches that create a clinical environment that spurs proactive engagement and involvement of all employees. By addressing the problem, the organization can reduce job stress, improve job satisfaction, improve productivity, enhance relationships with management, and increase retention.(Decreased Employee Engagement Comprehensive Nursing Essay Example)

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Visibility, Communication, and Recognition (VCR) strategy by the nurse leadership can mitigate the decreased employee engagement problem and steer the organization forward. The VCR strategy improves employee engagement in healthcare facilities by improving nurses’ participation in various nursing processes and governance, leading to sustainable engagement (George & Massey, 2020; Dempsey & Reilly, 2015; Sherman, 2017). Characteristically, visibility is viewed in leadership, while communication is considered a two-way process. On the other hand, recognition is regarded as an inherent awareness and promotion of employees’ efforts in a healthcare facility. The matrix couples to establish a practice environment that improves nurses’ work experience by enabling the inherent joy and meaning of the nursing profession.(Decreased Employee Engagement Comprehensive Nursing Essay Example)

The need to improve staff engagement since the organization’s focus is to cut costs, enhance healthcare quality, and promote patient-centered care in line with the triple aim framework. This intervention’s underlying justification is that employee engagement has a direct relationship with patient safety, care quality, and patient satisfaction. Therefore, the proposed intervention of promoting leadership visibility, effective communication, and employee recognition have a long-lasting impact on nurses’ attitudes to the organization’s goals, management, and responsibilities.(Decreased Employee Engagement Comprehensive Nursing Essay Example)

Leadership Visibility

Leadership visibility refers to the consistent presence and interactions of a nurse leader or manager with teams and staff. The presence of a nurse leader or manager increases connection with the nursing staff (George & Massey, 2020). In this case, connecting with the nursing staff will make them feel part of the organization and commit to its goals. Nurse leaders should strive to connect the staff to the organization’s status to make them develop a sense of pride (Hilton & Sherman, 2015; Sherman, 2017). When the nursing staff is connected to the organizational status, they tend to feel proud of the organization and contribute to its success. Furthermore, connecting with the employees creates a sense of security in their employment (Sherman, 2017). In this regard, the employees will be assured of their career progression within the organization since connecting with them exemplifies care for their welfare. Consequently, the leaders who connect with staff accord them respect, promote civility, and abhor cliques.(Decreased Employee Engagement Comprehensive Nursing Essay Example)

Leadership visibility has additional significance in promoting employee engagement. According to Kennedy & Jury (2016), nursing leadership visibility is vital for interprofessional and multidisciplinary collaborative decision-making during a crisis. In this regard, leadership visibility with be crucial in driving voices and making critical decisions regarding employee engagement. When a leader is visible, the employees know them and can communicate with them effortlessly. Besides, leadership visibility communicates the central value of the organization to the employees and points out employee contributions to various projects. Therefore, leadership visibility is vital in enhancing employee relationships and increasing engagement.(Decreased Employee Engagement Comprehensive Nursing Essay Example)

Two-Way Communication

Two-way communication refers to information transmission in which both parties are actively involved in exchanging information.  Moore et al. (2020) found that employee work dedication is associated with informed communication. In this context, the nurse leaders should promote a clinical environment characterized by open and transparent communication among the nursing staff and the leadership. Communication is crucial for effective staff engagement and improved organizational performance, customer service, employee retention, and satisfaction rates. Besides, effective communication promotes identification with the organization’s vision and mission. Information and communication technologies can enhance the efficacy of organizational communication and, ultimately, employee engagement. Communication allows employees to communicate their concerns with the management and potential measures to help solve them.(Decreased Employee Engagement Comprehensive Nursing Essay Example)

Employee Recognition.

Employee recognition involves acknowledging the nursing staff’s performance with rewards, opportunities, or accolades. Rewards and accolades have a significant impact on employee motivation and consequent engagement. Providing opportunities for skill development and relevant recognition is central to employee engagement (Sherman, 2017; Hilton & Sherman, 2015). In this case, recognizing employee efforts such as meeting target goals through sponsoring their participation in workshops to enhance their clinical skills or gifts will strengthen their engagement. Besides, the nurse leadership should recognize that decreasing employee engagement is a crucial problem that requires absolute intervention.(Decreased Employee Engagement Comprehensive Nursing Essay Example)

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Employee recognition is essential in building trust among employees, and leaders should demonstrate trust with their staff. Recognition gives employees a sense of belonging and promotes loyalty. Rosser et al. (2020) argue that nurse leadership should demonstrate to the nursing staff that their welfare is central in all administrative decisions. When employees are convinced that their well-fare is taken care of, they become motivated, which increases retention. Besides, recognizing employees’ well-fare promotes healthy culture, professional growth, and institutional empowerment.(Decreased Employee Engagement Comprehensive Nursing Essay Example)

Ethical, Legal, and Regulatory

The ethical concerns relevant to decreasing employee engagement are related to the ethical standards of care. Nurse leaders are obligated to support the nursing staff’s moral competence and ensure that every applicable ethical standard is adhered to (Devik et al., 2020). The central ethical aspect relevant to employee engagement includes providing safe, competent, and compassionate care. In this case, the nurse leadership should reflect on these ethical aspects associated with decreased staff engagement and consider them dependent on staff commitment and attitude towards their roles and position in the organization.(Decreased Employee Engagement Comprehensive Nursing Essay Example)

Disengaged staff could lead to poor patient outcomes. Nurses should protect patients from harm as part of their daily routine (Devik et al., 2020). However, lack of engagement could lead to the organization’s inability to retain staff. Ultimately, the failure to retain staff could lead to staff shortage, increased workload, and employee burnout, which is associated with adverse paint outcomes. Such working conditions could also lead to job dissatisfaction and moral distress due to growing patient demands and feelings of compromising ethical responsibility toward patient health.(Decreased Employee Engagement Comprehensive Nursing Essay Example)

Employee disengagement’s potential legal and regulatory implications include understaffing and a healthy working environment. Healthcare providers are legally required to ensure adequate staffing due to the association of low staffing with poor health care services (Harrington & Edelman, 2018). Moreover, healthcare providers should establish a positive working environment to support and value employees (Dempsey & Reilly, 2015). In this case, the leadership should assure the nursing staff of appropriate communication, be provided with resources, and provide a sufficient budget.(Decreased Employee Engagement Comprehensive Nursing Essay Example)

Why Decreased Employee Engagement

Nurses are central in promoting access to quality and safe health care. Nurses spend much more time with patients than any other health care profession. However, engaging nurses is a significant challenge in present healthcare organizations (George & Massey, 2020). Therefore, their engagement is crucial for the sustainability of a healthcare facility through reduced overhead costs and quality of health care services through commitment, job satisfaction, and patient satisfaction. Equally, nurses’ engagement is crucial in accomplishing the federal role of providing citizens access to quality and safer healthcare services. In the immediate context, nurse leaders. An engaged workforce is likely to offer and promote patient-centered care. Moreover, the engaged nursing staff is more likely to care about the organization’s vision and mission and perform better on critical performance indicators such as efficiency, innovativeness, and patient safety.(Decreased Employee Engagement Comprehensive Nursing Essay Example)

An engaged team is necessary to establish goals and meet federal healthcare standards at the provider level. Since highly engaged staff is associated with a satisfied workforce and consequently positive patient outcomes and satisfaction (Carthon et al., 2019), it is ideal to consider innovative strategies to create and sustain a healthy work environment. Besides, including nurses in major organizational activities promotes a healthy work culture. Recognizing that nurse leaders and staff collectively contribute to successful organizational activities is crucial. Together with other interventions, staff engagement can promote professional development and clinical excellence for the healthcare facility. Therefore, mitigating decreased employee engagement directly impacts the organization’s success since the employees are likely to be retained, increase their productiveness, and develop at an individual level.(Decreased Employee Engagement Comprehensive Nursing Essay Example)

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Decreased Employee Engagement Comprehensive Nursing Essay Example
Decreased Employee Engagement Comprehensive Nursing Essay Example 1


American Association of Critical-Care Nurses Healthy Work Environments (No date). Available at:  (Accessed 20 August 2022)(Decreased Employee Engagement Comprehensive Nursing Essay Example)

Carthon, J. M. B., Davis, L., Dierkes, A., Hatfield, L., Hedgeland, T., Holland, S., … & Aiken, L. H. (2019). Association of nurse engagement and nurse staffing on patient safety. Journal of Nursing Care Quality34(1), 40. (Decreased Employee Engagement Comprehensive Nursing Essay Example)

Dempsey, C., & Reilly, B. (2016). Nurse engagement: What are the contributing factors for success? OJIN: The Online Journal of Issues in Nursing21(1), 2.

Dempsey, C., & Reilly, B. (2016). Nurse engagement: What are the contributing factors for success? OJIN: The Online Journal of Issues in Nursing, 21(1), 2(Decreased Employee Engagement Comprehensive Nursing Essay Example).

Devik, S. A., Munkeby, H., Finnanger, M., & Moe, A. (2020). Nurse managers’ perspectives on working with everyday ethics in long-term care. Nursing ethics27(8), 1669-1680.

George, V., & Massey, L. (2020). Proactive strategy to improve staff engagement. Nurse Leader, 18(6), 532-535. (Decreased Employee Engagement Comprehensive Nursing Essay Example)

Harrington, C., & Edelman, T. S. (2018). Failure to meet nurse staffing standards: A litigation case study of a large US nursing home chain. INQUIRY: The Journal of Health Care Organization, Provision, and Financing55, 0046958018788686.

Hilton, N., & Sherman, R. O. (2015). Promoting work engagement: One medical center’s journey. Nurse Leader, 13(6), 52-57.

Kennedy, B., & Jury, T. (2016). Leader visibility: What’s your view? Nursing Management, 47(7), 34-39. (Decreased Employee Engagement Comprehensive Nursing Essay Example)

Moore, L., Abell, C. H., Harris, K., & Farrell, C. T. (2020). RNs’ perceptions of engagement and communication in the workplace. JONA: The Journal of Nursing Administration, 50(12), 629-634(Decreased Employee Engagement Comprehensive Nursing Essay Example).

Rosser, E., Westcott, L., Ali, P. A., Bosanquet, J., Castro‐Sanchez, E., Dewing, J., … & Witham, G. (2020). The need for visible nursing leadership during COVID‐19. Journal of Nursing Scholarship.(Decreased Employee Engagement Comprehensive Nursing Essay Example)

Sherman, R. O. (2017). Promoting staff engagement. American Nurse Today, 12(5), 37-38. Retrieved 20 August 2022(Decreased Employee Engagement Comprehensive Nursing Essay Example), from:

Decreased Employee Engagement Comprehensive Nursing Essay Example
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