The in-role job performance of nurses in Australian hospitals: CSU research


Thursday 17 May 2018

* Limited involvement in strategic planning lead to a cynical attitude of nurses to organisational change which reduces the level of their job performance.

* Effectiveness of training provided by hospitals influences how large this impact on job performance is.

* 486 participants responding from public hospitals in the Australian Capital Territory, New South Wales and Victoria.

* A negative work environment could result in training not providing any improvement to nurses’ performance.

* Where the levels of organisational citizenship behaviour are low in a hospital, performance is impacted and the intention of nurses to quit is high.

Research by a Charles Sturt University (CSU) PhD student has found the relationship between effective on-the-job training and performance of nurses, is significantly impacted by the work environment in hospitals.

The research by Ms Joanna Carlisle (pictured), a PhD candidate in the CSU School of Management and Marketing, revealed that several significant relationships exist between various factors, which indicates the importance of a holistic approach when managing the job performance of nurses.

Ms Carlisle’s thesis, completed under the supervision of Associate Professor Ramudu Bhanugopan, is titled, Job Performance of Nurses in the Australian Public Hospitals: A Psychometric Analysis of Training Effectiveness, Work Environment and Organisational Change.

She said the purpose of her research was to examine the in-role job performance of nurses in Australian hospitals.

“This research focused on work environment, attitude towards organisational change, training effectiveness, organisational citizenship behaviour, non-mandatory training, and intention to quit, considering how these factors influence nurses’ job performance,” Ms Carlisle said.

Data were collected through an online survey for both the pilot study and main data collection, with 486 participants responding from public hospitals in the Australian Capital Territory, New South Wales and Victoria.

The study revealed that several significant relationships exist between the factors, indicating the importance of an all-encompassing approach when managing job performance of nurses.

“The attitude of nurses to organisational change, whether positive or negative, alters the level of their job performance,” Ms Carlisle said. “However the effectiveness of training provided by hospitals influences how large this impact is.

“An increase in the effectiveness of training provided by hospitals increases the level of nurses’ job performance. This relationship between effective training and performance, is significantly impacted by the work environment in the hospital. This means a negative work environment could result in training not providing any improvement to nurses’ performance, no matter how effectively it is delivered.”

Ms Carlisle said her research shows that high levels of effective training in hospitals leads to high levels of organisational citizenship behaviour. However, the attitude of the nurses can impact this, in that ‘accepting’ attitudes contribute to improved organisational citizenship behaviour and ‘cynical’ attitudes decrease organisational citizenship behaviour.

“Where the levels of organisational citizenship behaviour are low in a hospital the intention of nurses to quit is high,” Ms Carlisle said. “This relationship is influenced by context performance, meaning if nurses’ context performance is high it is likely to lower their intention to quit, even if organisational citizenship behaviour is low.

“This study offers a number of contributions and significant implications for nurses in Australian hospitals and health organisations, in general. With literature focusing on training and development and training needs to improve job performance, industry seems to regard training and development as the go-to fix-it response for poor performance.”

“In light of the findings of this research, hospital management and human resource departments should start looking at a more holistic approach to improving job performance and organisational development. Shifting focus to ensure training provided is effective but also considers the organisational elements that can influence job performance significantly.”

Ms Carlisle said future research should work to establish the best way hospitals can change the work environment and organisational development to ensure they are getting the optimal job performance from nurses.


ends

Media contact: Bruce Andrews, 0418 669 362

Media Note:

Contact CSU Media to arrange interviews with Ms Joanna Carlisle who is based at CSU in Wagga Wagga.