RELATIONSHIP BETWEEN HUMAN RESOURCE MANAGEMENT PRACTICES AND STAFF RETENTION IN PUBLIC HOSPITALS IN KENYA: A CASE STUDY OF GATUNDU DISTRICT HOSPITAL

JOHN KAGWI KAMAU

Abstract


Staff retention is one of the key challenges that many organizations around the world, and specifically in Kenya, face today. For many organizations, link between human resource practices and employee performance has become a key challenge, and so firm’s need to incorporate the HRM practices and employee retention if they want the organization’s survival. The general objective of this study, is to assess the relationship between human resource management practices and staff retention in the healthcare sector in Kenya, Kiambu County. The three specific objectives of the study include; analyze the relationship between reward practices and staff retention in the Healthcare sector, to examine the relationship between training and staff retention in the Healthcare sector. The study adopted a case study research design. The study targeted300 employees of Gatundu district hospital, from which a sample of 90respondents was drawn for the study using 30% of the target population. This included doctors, nurses, clinical officers, administration staff and other paramedics the sample was selected through stratified sampling techniques. The researcher collected primary data using both structured and unstructured questionnaires whereas secondary data was collected through existing literature related to the current research topic under study. Quantitative data was  analyzed using descriptive statistical tools namely frequencies,percentages,mean and standard deviation, while inferential statistical tools such as correlation and regression will be used to determine and explain variable relationship; through SPSS version 22 computer program. The study recommends the following to improve on employee performance and aid in motivation, attraction and retention of staff, the study recommends that the Ministry of health and other stakeholders like the public service commission (PSC) and salaries and remuneration commission (SRC) should conduct job evaluations, in order to determine the relative worth of jobs. The use of job evaluation reflects values of the organization and it should be up to date with the job it covers and should be non-discriminatory. The study also recommends that the Ministry of health and other government bodies like the salaries and remuneration commission, should put into consideration the use of financial and non –financial needs in order to fully satisfy different employee needs thus attaining the set goals and objectives. Rewards maybe intrinsic (self-generated factors such as, autonomy, recognition, advancement, training) or extrinsic (what is done to others for example pay, bonus and allowances etc.).In nature, depending with the employee. The management of the hospital should train the employees in order to equip them with knowledge, skills, and abilities, to effectively and efficiently perform their duties adequately. Training should be done on health and safety, public relations, use of new equipment, and managing diversity. The study recommends that the government should liaise with county governments on whether to devolve the health sector to the county or the national government to maintain the health sector, and expeditiously ensure to adequately pay the medical personnel better packages and pay the dues on time, because the personnel have families to take care of their basic needs. Future researchers should focus on other variables that may influence retention of medical personnel such as recruitment and selection, employee relations, empowerment, career development, leadership styles, work-life balance, promotions ( career advancement), among others. This study was limited to public hospitals in Kenya using Gatundu district hospital as a case study. A similar study could be carried out in other organizations such as private hospitals to find out whether the same results will be obtained.

Key Words: Human Resource Management Practices, Staff Retention


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