Factors related to hospital nurse intention to leave: Does striving for work-life balance and sense of coherence affect wishes to stay in the organization?

Maki Matsuo, Eiko Suzuki, Yuko Takayama


The aim of this study is to identify relationships between striving for work-life balance (S-WLB), sense of coherence (SOC), and intention to leave among hospital nurses. In August of 2017, we conducted a self-administered questionnaire survey to 2239 nurses at nine public hospitals. The questionnaire included demographic factors, work environmental factors, organizational factors, striving for worklife balance, a 13-item SOC, the Maslach Burnout Inventory, and intention to leave. We carried out a multiple regression analysis with intention to leave as the dependent variable and others as independent variables. We obtained valid responses from 1368 full-time employed nurses (61.1%). The mean age of respondents was 36.38 ± 10.18 years, and the length of clinical experience 13.4 ± 9.65 years. The mean total score of the intention to leave was 14.58 ± 5.09. As a result of the multiple regression analysis, the SWLB and the SOC were found to be statistically related to the intention to leave even after controlling for the confounding factor of burnout. In addition, the satisfaction of desire level for the actual working assignment at the workplace was a significant independent factor. In this study, the full-time nursing staff had a low intention to leave score when they had a high score in the SWLB and the SOC. It was also found that the level of satisfaction with appointment to a desired assignment is a significant factor in the intention to leave. In establishing an attractive workplace for nursing staff, it is important to create a workplace environment and supports to be able to properly evaluate workplace satisfaction after assignments are made while taking into account individual S-WLB and SOC functions.


nurses; work-life balance; sense of coherence; intention to leave

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