Selecting newly qualified registered nurses through multi-mini interviews

Sharples, Kath and Elcock, Karen (2016) Selecting newly qualified registered nurses through multi-mini interviews. In: NET2016: 27th International Networking for Healthcare Education Conference; 06-08 Sep 2016, Cambridge, U.K.. (Unpublished)


Background, context and evidence base for the innovation, including, wherever possible, its international relevance Aged care is not typically viewed by pre-registration nursing students as a demanding or attractive career option; rather, it is often perceived as a resting place on the way to retirement (Abbey et al, 2006), the ‘poor relation’ of nursing (Hunter et al, 2007) that lacks a clear definition of specialisation (Abbey et al, 2006). In both Australia and the UK very few newly qualified registered nurses choose aged care in their graduate year (Fussell et al, 2009); rather, many consider it as second choice option if they fail to gain employment via first choice government health organisations (NSW Health, 2014). Aim/focus of the innovation In 2014 UnitingCare Ageing NSW ACT implemented values based section through multi-mini interviews (MMI) to select 20 newly qualified registered nurses for employment in 2015. This innovative approach to recruitment and selection of newly qualified registered nurses aims to attract and retain registered nurses that are fit for purpose, give value for money (Burke et al, 2014) and meet the challenges posed by the increasing diversity of older people; their care needs, preferences and affluence (Productivity Commission, 2008). Implementation of the innovation A total of 100 applicants were invited to attend an interview and assessment day comprising five MMI’s, consisting of scenario, role play and clinically based questions scored against assessment standardised rubrics. Methods used to assess the innovation At the conclusion of the interview and assessment day interviewers and candidates were invited to evaluate their experience via a short questionnaire comprising both qualitative and quantitative questions. Key findings Having established reliability and validity in assessment of non-cognitive attributes amongst applicants to medical schools (Lemay et al, 2007) (O’Brien et al, 2011) (Dowell et al, 2012), MMI’s are gaining popularity as a means of selecting people with required attributes into other healthcare sectors (Perkins et al, 2013). Following a review of the literature we believe that this is the first time that an MMI protocol has been utilized in Australia and the wider international community for selection of newly qualified registered nurses into an aged care organisation. Results of the evaluation of our MMI protocol would suggest that the MMI protocol could enhance the likelihood of successfully selecting practitioners where core values such as empathy and ethical judgements are crucial (Perkins et al, 2013) and are matched with a genuine desire to specialise in aged care.

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