What do nurses and midwives value about their jobs? Results from a discrete choice experiment

Anthony Scott, Julia Witt, Christine Duffield, Guyonne Kalb

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearchpeer-review

16 Citations (Scopus)


Objectives: To examine nurses’ and midwives’ preferences for the characteristics of their jobs. Methods: A discrete choice experiment of 990 nurses and midwives administered as part of a survey of nurses and midwives in Victoria, Australia. Results: Autonomy, working hours, and processes to deal with violence and bullying were valued most highly. Nurses and midwives would be willing to forgo 19% and 16% of their annual income for adequate autonomy and adequate processes to deal with violence and bullying, compared to poor autonomy and poor processes for violence and bullying. They would need to be paid an additional 24% to increase their working hours by 10% ($73 per hour). Job characteristics that were less important were shift work, nurse to patient ratios, and public or private sector work. Conclusions: Policies to improve retention and job satisfaction of nurses and midwives should initially focus on autonomy, processes to deal with violence and bullying, and reasonable working hours. Further research on the costeffectiveness of these different policies is needed.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)31-38
Number of pages8
JournalJournal of Health Services Research and Policy
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jan 2015
Externally publishedYes


  • Discrete choice experiments
  • Nurses
  • Workforce

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