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Mind The Gap

This project was initiated in response to employers growing concerns about the recruitment and retention of nurses and midwives locally and nationally. Of particular concern was the high turnover rate for band 5 nurses and midwives in some organisations.


Through this work we have learnt that there are generational concepts that require consideration if we are to appropriately support individuals as they begin their professional careers. For the first time in history four different generations will be working together in the same employment environment. There are generational differences in values, expectations, perceptions and motivations in the current workforce and these are highly relevant in terms of staff education and engagement. Understanding differing motivational needs across these generations offers employers and education providers a real opportunity to better align support to meet individual needs and to improve recruitment and retention. Whilst this project was conducted within an academic framework, this particular report aims to provide a summary of the work in a broadly accessible format.

With generational differences amongst practitioners within the healthcare profession, implications  are multifaceted and are an essential consideration for future proofing education, recruitment and more importantly the retention of staff within the NHS. It is critical to ensure that we retain the majority of nurses and midwives we educate in the West Midlands.

This work, as well as studies from USA, Canada and Australia provides a compelling case for change in how we attract, support and retain early career nurses and midwives, to better reflect the needs of the new generations. It is evident that the characteristics of generations play a major part in how we function, work, see the world and in particular the workplace. Read the full Mind the Gap report. 

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Narrowing the Gap is the second phase of a West Midlands hosted work stream that aims to better understand factors that influence different generations of Nurses and Midwives to remain working in the profession and to seek ideas about how we desig

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