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The Nurse Leader as Logistician: Optimizing Human Capital

Fitzpatrick, Therese A. PhD, RN; Brooks, Beth A. PhD, RN, FACHE

Journal of Nursing Administration: February 2010 - Volume 40 - Issue 2 - p 69-74
doi: 10.1097/NNA.0b013e3181cb9f3b

Many traditional approaches to planning and deploying human capital have not been effective. Staffing offices are chaotic, budgets are overrun, staffing is frequently misaligned, a growing number of state legislatures are mandating nurse staffing levels, and dissatisfaction with work schedules abounds. The authors explores methodologies used in the science of logistics management, namely, systems theory and mathematical optimization modeling, which, when applied to human capital planning and deployment, can significantly improve business results.

Authors' Affiliations: Executive Vice President and Healthcare Practice Leader (Dr Fitzpatrick), Assistant Clinical Professor, University of Illinois-Chicago; President (Dr Brooks), The Brooks Group, LLC, Chicago, Illinois.

Corresponding author: Dr Fitzpatrick, The University of Illinois-Chicago, Department of Health Systems Sciences, 845 South Damen Avenue, Chicago, IL 60612 (

© 2010 Lippincott Williams & Wilkins, Inc.