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Utilizing a Scope and Span of Control Tool to Measure Workload and Determine Supporting Resources for Nurse Managers

Jones, Dawndra DNP, RN, NEA-BC; McLaughlin, Maribeth MPM, BSN, RN; Gebbens, Christopher BS, BA; Terhorst, Lauren PhD

JONA: The Journal of Nursing Administration: May 2015 - Volume 45 - Issue 5 - p 243–249
doi: 10.1097/NNA.0000000000000193

The scope and span of control of the nurse manager directly impact turnover, succession planning, and satisfaction. Measuring and benchmarking scope and span of control remain a challenge. An interprofessional team across an integrated health delivery system developed and implemented such a tool, which was used to determine the amount of operational and clerical support for managers. Since implementation, there has been a decrease in turnover and time to fill nurse manager positions.

Author Affiliations: Chief Nursing Officer and Vice President Patient Care Services (Dr Jones), UPMC McKeesport Hospital, Chief Nursing Officer and Vice President Patient Care Services (Ms McLaughlin), Magee-Womens Hospital of UPMC; Senior Financial Analyst (Mr Gebbens), UPMC McKeesport/UPMC East; Assistant Professor (Dr Terhorst), School of Health and Rehabilitation Sciences, University of Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania.

The authors declare no conflicts of interest.

Correspondence: Dr Jones, UPMC McKeesport Hospital, 1500 Fifth Ave, McKeesport, PA 15132 (

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