The Effects of Work Satisfaction and Work Flexibility on Burnout in Nurses

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Background The World Health Organization has encouraged improving working conditions for nurses to decrease turnover and increase nurse staffing and nursing capacity. The International Council of Nurses has pointed out that a positive work environment can improve satisfaction and decrease burnout in nurses. However, the effects of working conditions and work satisfaction on burnout in nurses remain unclear. Purpose The purpose of this study was to explore the effects of working-condition-related flexibility and work satisfaction on burnout in nurses. Methods A cross-sectional design was employed, and 450 nurses from a single medical center participated in this study. In addition to demographic information, three survey instruments, including the Taiwanese Hospital Nurses' Job Satisfaction Scale, the Working Conditions and Flexible System Scale, and the Maslach Burnout Inventory-Chinese Version, were used to measure working condition flexibility, work satisfaction, and burnout. Descriptive statistics, the Pearson correlation coefficient, and hierarchical linear regression were used to analyze the data. Results Four hundred thirty-five nurses were enrolled as participants. Most were female, with a mean age of 29 years. Over four fifths (83.1%) were unmarried, and 65.5% had at least 2 years of prior experience working at other hospitals. Although the participants reported experiencing burnout several times per month, they reported feeling satisfied with their work. They noted flexibility related to working conditions, especially task-related flexibility, as important. Four variables (satisfaction/professional autonomy, interpersonal interaction, workload, and working condition flexibility/task flexibility) were found to be significant predictors of emotional exhaustion (adjusted R2 = 0.212). However, only professional autonomy was found to significantly predict a sense of low personal accomplishment (adjusted R2 =.077), whereas nursing competence significantly predicted depersonalization (adjusted R2 =.086). Conclusions Work satisfaction and flexibility related to working conditions were shown to relate negatively to burnout. Nursing managers should improve the level of satisfaction related to professional autonomy, interpersonal interaction, and workload as well as task flexibility for nurses.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)E240
JournalJournal of Nursing Research
Issue number6
Publication statusPublished - 2022 Dec 28

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • General Nursing


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