Human resource management practices influencing performance of nursing officers in Nyeri County, Kenya
Ongori, Jeremiah Motari
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Various organizations employ different human resources initiatives in order to increase efficiency. The most common initiatives employed to improve efficiency include performance contracts, internal contracting, contracting-out and outsourcing of services among others. Employing such initiatives are considered among the primary HRM practices, which are aimed at determining the equilibrium between workforce supply and the ability of healthcare practitioners to practice effectively and efficiently to ensure improved and quality care in healthcare systems. This study deliberated on HRM practices that influence the performance of nursing officers at Nyeri County, Kenya. The explicit objectives of this study were to determine how recruitment affects the performance of nursing officers, to examine how training influences performance of nursing officers, to determine the influence of deployment practices on the performance of nursing officers, and to determine the influence of motivation on the performance of nursing officers. The study targeted nursing staffs and managers in Nyeri County public health institutions and at the County Director’s Office. A stratified sample of 248 was selected and surveyed. Data was collected using self-administered questionnaire. Descriptive and inferential statistics using statistical package for social sciences SPSS 23 was conducted. The researcher found that recruitment processes in Nyeri County comprised of internships (f=109, 44%) and field placements (f=82, 33%). Selections were made via individual interviews (f=225, 91%) while job orientation (f=237, 96%) was the main orientation technique. Through the study, the researcher found that training of nurses was conducted but there was a limitation in the diversity of approaches used. Results showed indicate that on the job training (f=156, 63%) training courses (f=70, 28%) were the major approaches of training. The researcher found that there were gaps in the deployment practices with mean value of 2.73, SD=1.132. Deployment in some departments was deemed as disciplinary action (M=3.09, SD=1.325) and managers response to deployment needs per department or ward or facility (M=3.07, SD=1.218) were rated to moderate extent. The researcher also found that motivation of nurses was not well done with a mean of 2.84, SD=1.090, and there were no upgrading and promotion opportunities (M=1.81, SD=1.133) for nurses in the county. There was a moderate performance of nurses with a mean value of 3.75, SD=1.100. Chi-square analysis showed that training (χ2= 34.500, df=12, p=0.001) and motivation (χ2 = 28.860, df=16, p=0.025) were significant at 95% confidence level. All the Cramer’s V values were positive indicating that HRM practices enhance performance. The Cramers’ V values show that motivation (v=0.473) was the most influential factor followed by training (v=0.422). The researcher concluded that unsatisfactory performance of nurses is due to inadequate training and lack of motivation. The researcher therefore recommended that training programs in the health sector should be reviewed in order to employ more techniques in the training of nursing officers in service. In addition, motivation approaches and techniques used in the health sector should be overhauled as they are not effective. In particular, remuneration of nursing staffs who have upgraded should be reviewed according to human resources policy.