Within the first two years after graduating, 33% of new nurses quit.
Reality of life as a nurse and the steep learning curve are the biggest reasons for hanging up the stethoscope. With 1 million registered nurse job vacancies the Bureau of Labor Statistics anticipates through 2022, the big question is – how do you create an environment for new grad nurses that is inviting, makes them happy they accepted your job offer, and sets them up for long term success?
Onboarding is one of the most powerful ways to increase retention. It’s the bedrock of a solid foundation between your nurses, organization, and patients. This pivotal moment is especially critical for new graduate nurses, who are new to your organization and the realities of life as a nurse.
The key is to onboard new graduate nurses with a program that is comprehensive, personalized, and automated. At Click Boarding, we recommend a customizable mobile-first platform with automated triggers and workflows that are consistent with how their lives have evolved over the last 3 to 4 years. Here are the top five onboarding best practices:
Onboarding Best Practices
1. Policies, Patient Ratios & Procedures
Include all the information your new graduate nurse needs to know about working in your health care center and within their unit. Provide policies, procedures, steps for admission and discharge, and reporting. Don’t make them have to worry about their patient ratios or anything else they need to know but didn’t learn in nursing school.
A common concern of new nurse graduates is feeling isolated on the floor. The most important thing is to be mindful of the importance of getting your new nurses socially engaged and actively making it happen. Link them up with a senior staff member. Introduce them to the whole team. Greet them at the door their first day. Plan a team lunch. There are many ways to make them feel like part of the team – find something that works for you and feels genuine.
Enable your new nurses to continually learn and grow by including educational opportunities in their onboarding. These could be courses provided by your health care center, on demand training access, or educational benefits they’re eligible for.
Onboarding nurses is challenging for the current staff and new hires. Simplify things by automating the process so no one has to remember which step is next or if a step has been completed. Set up the process to kick off the moment your new nurse signs their acceptance letter and have it guide them through each phase.
The entire onboarding experience should be accessible from your new nurse’s mobile device of choice. This makes it easy for them to follow the program and start to feel like they belong.