Date of Award


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy


Workforce Education and Development

First Advisor

Hagler, Barbara


This dissertation investigated the reason nurses (RNs, LPNs) stayed at one job for 20 years or longer and compared their responses to nurses (RNs, CMAs) who changed jobs more than four times in 20 years. The study divided their responses into two categories, hygiene factors or motivation factors, based on Herzberg’s two factor theory. The dissertation topic was chosen to determine if increased pay has a significant impact on the long-term employment of nurses, although quantitative research in the field heavily promoted pay as a solution to turnover. Healthcare companies incur costly consequences of turnover and this qualitative study adds information to the field on potential interventions to address and decrease turnover. This dissertation examined the real reasons these participants stayed at their jobs long-term and why these short-term employees left jobs frequently, with the results showing that pay would not decrease turnover of short-term employees. The long-term people stayed for motivation factors and the short-term people left to seek hygiene factors. The quantitative research in the field, focused on interventions to decrease turnover, was not supported in this research.




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