Cost-effective Hospital Strategies can Increase Employee Engagement

by: Nichole Gunn March 31, 2011

It would be difficult to imagine a more hectic workplace environment than that of a hospital. Life and death situations, along with other patients’ situations have everyone from nurses, doctors, and even administrators rushing through corridors. Add to this the constant influx of patients, and it creates a highly stressful setting.

To meet this situation head-on, hospital executives need to create effective strategies to keep the lines of communication open for their employees. Open communication in this type of environment allows the hospital executives to stay on top of workplace concerns. It also fosters a positive employee outlook leading to employee satisfaction and loyalty.

In the Becker’s Hospital Review, Lindsey Dunn expresses the importance of communication between not only the staff and patients, but also the staff and superiors. Keeping employees aware and up to date on all internal changes, including changes to benefits, practices, and regulations provides a sense of security, even if the news isn’t on a positive note.

President of PerformancePoint Brad Federman told Becker’s, “When decisions are made behind doors in secrecy, we lose engagement. The more you can share, the better."

When devising strategies to enhance communications between staff and superiors, holding employee ‘town halls’ is an effective method of allowing entire workforces to gather for company updates and news. It also allows for workers to freely offer their input, whether in the form of grievances or concerns.

Providing a platform for employees to ‘vent’ is a practical business strategy that fosters employee appreciation. Employees who feel they are being heard and are a part of the company’s decision-making policies, are more likely to be motivate and engaged in their work. Town halls and company-wide meetings are useful tools that provide this platform.

Dunn advises, “Activities should be designed to encourage employee participation. Giving an example, he explains, “Hospital leadership could use the events to present results of various performance indicators and announce plans to improve weak areas. The events could then be used to vet these ideas with the employees, encouraging them to provide feedback and other suggestions."

Putting this strategy into practice, BayHealth Medical Center in Delaware implemented an employee rewards program designed to provide recognition to qualifying employees. Realizing that recognition needs to be established on more than a yearly basis, the medical center has an ‘Employees of the Quarter’ award. The rewards program also provides winners with plaques and ‘better’ parking spaces.

Along with providing needed employee recognition, these rewards are a very cost-effective strategy.


About Nichole Gunn

Nichole Gunn is the VP of Marketing at Incentive Solutions, an Atlanta-based incentive company that delivers advanced, agile B2B customer loyalty and channel sales incentives programs.