Today marks the start of the International Week of Happiness at Work, set up to promote the idea that the world will be a better place if more people are happy at work. After all, happy employees have a huge advantage over unhappy ones. They are more productive, flexible, resilient, creative, keep customers happier and work better with their colleagues.
Nurses have traditionally been motivated to join the profession in order to help people and make a difference to their lives, but data from the Nursing & Midwifery Council’s (NMC) annual report on registrants shows that over 21,000 healthcare professionals left the register in 2019-20. While retirement is still the most common reason for departing, around 26% said they were leaving due to high stress and poor mental health.
Too much pressure
Respondents to the NMC’s survey said they experience high stress levels due to extremely demanding work environments, arising from a combination of high expectations, pressure of responsibility and volume of work.
“Never enough staff and over-worked and over-stressed is the main reason I became totally burned out. I love my job, but I must admit I would never allow anyone I care for to go into being worked to the bone like that.”
- Former NHS nurse
Respondents also claimed to feel under-supported and that their concerns were not being addressed by management, for example around bullying. Others said they had become disillusioned or dissatisfied due to a combination of factors including increased administration, increased regulation, overwork and lack of support.
“The NMC’s data shows that too often people quit nursing because of the level of pressure, making shortages even more acute. It’s tough going to work every day when there aren’t enough of you and there is seemingly little light at the end of the tunnel."
- Dame Donna Kinnair, RCN Chief Executive and General Secretary
Are you considering leaving your nursing job?
It’s hard for nurses to deliver the best for their patients when their own health and wellbeing is suffering and they’re not happy at work. If you love nursing but you’re not happy in your current job, there are alternatives.
Find out more about agency nursing with MSI Recruitment, which could offer you more flexibility around your hours, better pay and more opportunity to progress your career.
To find out more, contact our Agency Nursing team on firstname.lastname@example.org.
Alternatively, you could consider moving to the private sector. MSI are currently recruiting nurses to become Functional Assessors. This is a 9-5 role with no shifts or weekend work, great pay levels and ongoing training and career development.
To find out more, contact our Permanent Nurses team on email@example.com.