Higher Nursing Satisfaction Is Achievable

No Bad Handoffs ➔ Better Shifts ➔ Happier Nurses

We’re living in a new era where hospital nursing is more complex than ever. 50% of bedside nurses now say they’re burnt out and turnover rates are spiking.

Nurses choose hospitals that find meaningful ways to care for them, and we leave the ones that don’t. Nurses prefer hospitals that:

  • Reduce their stress
  • Help them get familiar with patients as quickly as possible
  • Reduce unnecessary variation in communication
  • Make them feel part of a high-performing team
  • Have a collaborative work culture

“When you get good report, your day will be better.”
– Walela, Bedside Nurse

The best way to support nurses is to give them the resources they need to do their best work. That includes an efficient, standardized handover that lets them hit the ground running, wasting less time searching for information, and more time for what they like to do: problem solving and proactively getting ahead in their day.

Less stress can mean lower turnover. Nursing turnover fell to less than 3% on the unit where we first developed our standardized communication processes.

Behaviors become habits, and habits become culture. You’re already doing a lot to support your nurses. You can get the most out of those efforts by transforming the most stressful part of a nursing shift, the first 30 minutes, with an efficient Change of Shift Huddle and a Structured Bedside Handover.

Voices from the Frontline

When clinicians, patients, and hospital leaders all say they love something, that’s worth listening to.

There’s great power in beginnings.

Change the first 20 minutes of each shift,
and you change the culture of your unit

Team Huddle

Our nurses didn’t feel like a team and started each shift more like a group of individuals running around. So we began a Change of Shift Huddle which takes 3 minutes. The off-going charge nurse reads through a standard form to the oncoming shift. It’s the most professional, efficient team meeting you’ll see anywhere in the hospital and starts with a 1-page form. You can use ours. Tens of thousands of nursing shifts have used it.

Bedside Handover

As nurses, we dread getting bad handoff. When there’s no structure, each nurse gives report their own way and it feels less safe and more stressful.

So our units decided to standardize each bedside handover. The heart of our handover is a structured, single-page shift report form using an ISBAR framework, Review of Systems outline, and it’s customized for the unit. It’s presented top to bottom by the outgoing nurse, then handed over with our patient.

Safety and Quality

The assurance of quality and safety is the single most significant responsibility of leaders in healthcare delivery. It’s a cornerstone of our careers.

The hand-off process is pivotal to patient safety. Many breaches of patient safety occur around change-of-shift. Most hospitals have adopted some level of bedside handover by now, but telling nurses to give report at the bedside doesn’t reduce unnecessary variation. Every nurse has their own way of giving report and nursing handover is typically inconsistent and unstructured.

Patient Satisfaction

High patient satisfaction scores are achievable and it’s a natural result of hardwiring a daily “wow moment” for each patient.
HCAHPS scores are driven by “top box” positive responses, but it’s hard to impress every patient every day. Asking stressed-out nurses to also be “customer service agents” isn’t the best approach.

Nurse Engagement

We’re living in a new era. Hospital nursing is more complex than ever and 50% of bedside nurses now say they’re burnt out. Turnover rates are spiking. Nurses choose hospitals that find meaningful ways to care for them, and we leave the ones that don’t. They prefer hospitals that:

-Reduce stress
-Help them get familiar with patients as quickly as possible
-Reduce unnecessary variation in communication
-Make them feel part of a high-performing team
-Have a collaborative work culture