Improving Recruitment and Retention: Embracing Technology
Holland, Cecil A.
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Session presented on Wednesday, September 24, 2014, and Thursday, September 25, 2014: Improving Recruitment and Retention: Embracing Technology. BACKGROUND: In conversation with chapter leaders, several barriers have been identified regarding member participation in local chapters of Sigma Theta Tau International Honor Society of Nursing (STTI). In 2011, the participation of our local chapter decreased tremendously. The executive board was concerned with this and strategies were implemented to improve recruitment and retention of members. Generally when students graduate, they were not regularly participating in the chapter. It was also challenging to get faculty or nurse leaders to the meetings due to scheduling conflicts. Participation is essential for achieving the goals and objectives of the organization. Thus it was apparent that recruitment and retention needed improvement. SIGNIFICANCE: The local chapter had several goals for community service as well as to prepare members for leadership positions. The chapter needed to engage more members in order to achieve the call to action as recommended by the STTI president. If members did not participate, the chapter would not be able to achieve the objectives of the organization. DESIGN: In 2012, the executive board of the chapter established goals to improve recruitment and retention of members. We designed T-shirts for current members to display the spirit of the organization. We visited classes of undergraduate and graduate nursing students to introduce the chapter and its goals and vision. We also made arrangements to organize display tables at two of the local hospitals to attract interest of our nurse leaders. Other strategies were also implemented. In 2012-2013, we implemented virtual chapter meetings. We included the use of COLLOBORATE so that chapter members could attend meetings even if it was not face-to-face. Members received the virtual link prior to the chapter meetings and could log in 15 minutes prior to the meeting time. Members were able to participate in the discussions, even if they were not in the physical location of the meeting. CONCLUSION: The chapter has demonstrated effective and precise communication through various forms of technology and media usage to enhance communication among our chapter members. The recruitment and retention strategies demonstrated effective outcomes and member participation improved. This presentation will discuss the challenges, strategies implemented and the outcome.