A team of Centre for Work, Organisation and Wellbeing (WOW) researchers, in conjunction with a member of Australian Institute of Health Innovation at Macquarie University (Associate Professor David Greenfield), has recently published a paper in the International Journal for Quality in Health Care focusing on the role of accreditation bodies in influencing human resource management (HRM) performance outcomes in hospitals.
Entitled “Health service accreditation reinforces a mindset of high-performance human resource management: lessons from an Australian study”, the paper reports on the findings of an Australian Research Council Linkage grant project led Associate Professor Keith Townsend (pictured left), and including fellow WOW researchers, Professor Adrian Wilkinson, Dr Sandra Lawrence and Research Fellow Dr Ashlea Kellner (pictured below, left).
In Australia, accreditation programs are used in hospitals to drive organisational and clinical changes and improve the quality of patient care. More recently, accreditation programs have evolved to evaluate and improve systems of HRM. The study includes a sample of six healthcare case study organisations with high performing HRM systems in which interviews with key managers were conducted.
The results of the study indicate that hospitals that achieve very high rankings on HRM performance in accreditation are internally motivated to pursue best practice. Participation in an accreditation program is a secondary and less signiﬁcant inﬂuence. However, the accreditation program provides an opportunity for internal and external review and assessment of hospital performance in HRM. These are important and valuable reﬂective learning and feedback events. In sum, the mindset of hospitals with high performing HRM systems is to use participation in accreditation as an opportunity for growth and improvement; achievement of positive results on accreditation is not the primary objective but a welcome result.
An early online version of the paper is available from Oxford University Press (vol. 26, issue 4).
Author: Dr Ashlea Kellner, WOW