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Benefits of Measuring Workload in Nursing

June 10, 2015


Guest Blogger: Gerry Connors, MS, RN, LHRM,

Clinical Solution Specialist at Kronos

A workforce management solution enables healthcare organizations to gain insight into a myriad of important information about their most vital resource, their labor force.  Time and Attendance, Scheduling, Absence Management, HR/Payroll, Hiring, Analytics and Workload measurement are all key components in managing and sustaining a vital workforce for the future.

Workload measurement specifically is at the forefront in today’s landscape as hospitals take a closer view of the population they serve.  Workload measurement should always provide synergy to the equation.  Workload measurement is vital to the accurate and equitable allocation of resources and a complete picture of labor resource requirements.  Caregiver characteristics, the environment, level of team support, ancillary resources, unit geography, continuity of care guidance, and family dynamics with a real time plan of care should all be in concert to provide safe quality care.  The benefits of this synergistic approach provide a more meaningful balanced workload for the nurse and safe delivery of care for the patients.

Transparency of data including real time ADT information, physician orders along with nursing orders build collaboration of patient flow activities to staffing demands.   Staffing decisions will be in sync with operational efforts creating forecasting opportunities and trending data.  The multi-dimensional approach to workload measurement can also assist organizations in measuring staff satisfaction with the work environment itself building a stronger workforce for the future.

Hospitals that incorporate workload strategies within labor management will gain an advantage. In addition, current workforce management solutions that do not address workload measurement are not fully measuring the interrelationships, of staffing, scheduling and patient care outcomes.

Solutions that do NOT incorporate workload measurement into the staffing equation are not capturing the full picture.  With increased choices and a highly competitive market to attract and retain nurses, hospitals that reflect the full spectrum of workload in their staffing strategies will see a competitive advantage over their peers.

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