Child, youth and family services social worker turnover in Newfoundland and Labrador: trends and determinants

Little, Kathleen R. (2010) Child, youth and family services social worker turnover in Newfoundland and Labrador: trends and determinants. Masters thesis, Memorial University of Newfoundland.

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Social worker turnover has been repeatedly identified in Newfoundland and Labrador (NL) as a major issue affecting the stability within Child, Youth and Family Services (CYFS) and the level of client care provided by the organization. Although recent provincial research has identified turnover as a primary issue, no studies have quantified CYFS turnover and examined trends over time, or examined factors associated with intent to leave. The purposes of the current studies are twofold: (1) to quantify and examine trends in CYFS social worker turnover within Eastern Health (EH); and (2) to identify what factors may be contributing to the turnover of CYFS social workers within NL. -- Results from Study 1 indicated that EH's internal and external child welfare worker turnover is high, with internal movements contributing to the majority of the turnover within CYFS. The highest levels of internal turnover were observed in 2007-2008, and the highest levels of external turnover were observed in 2008-2009. The majority of the turnover was internal, and attributable to SWIs and managers changing positions within CYFS. When examined by geographic location, external turnover was generally higher amongst urban teams than rural teams. Wide variations in internal and external turnover were also observed at the team level. -- Findings from Study 2 indicated that approximately one quarter of CYFS social workers surveyed intended to leave their position within 12 months. The results suggested that decreased job satisfaction, increased depersonalization, decreased manager support, increased emotional exhaustion, and rural location were positively correlated with intent to leave. When entered into logistic regression models, the full model accounted for the most explained variance in intent to leave (21.6%). -- These findings suggest that CYFS social workers within EH are experiencing high levels of turnover, specifically internally. Also, across the province CYFS social workers are experiencing levels of burnout, job dissatisfaction, and decreased manager support that are contributing to their desire to leave their positions within CYFS. -- Specifically targeted programs aimed at reducing levels of burnout, increasing job satisfaction, and increasing perceived levels of manager support amongst CYFS social workers will likely help reduce and manage turnover within the organization.

Item Type: Thesis (Masters)
Item ID: 9512
Additional Information: Bibliography: leaves 104-114.
Department(s): Medicine, Faculty of
Date: 2010
Date Type: Submission
Geographic Location: Canada--Newfoundland and Labrador
Library of Congress Subject Heading: Eastern Health (N.L.)--Officials and employees--Turnover; Labor turnover--Newfoundland and Labrador; Social workers--Newfoundland and Labrador--Attitudes; Social workers--Job satisfaction--Newfoundland and Labrador
Medical Subject Heading: Social Work--Newfoundland and Labrador; Personnel Turnover--Newfoundland and Labrador

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