Preferential treatment for new staff

  1. Does anyone else have a problem with new staff getting preferential treatment? I have worked at the same hospital for eighteen years, and it seems new hires are getting better treatment from administration than older staff. They get sign on bonuses, better schedules, and seem to have lower standards of behavior. I was actually asked to work overtime last weekend because a guy who has worked here only three months wanted the weekend off. The supervisor even said that she wanted to keep him happy because he was new. It wouldn't have made me angry if I hadn't been told just last month I could not cover for another RN who wanted the day off for her sister's surgery because it would mean overtime. People are coming into the hospital and paid the same wage as those of us who have been here for years. A friend of mine was moved to night shift recently because there was a new girl coming who could only work days. There was an incident recently where one of our staff who has been here for fifteen years was suspended because he said something inappropriate to a physician. I witnessed the incident, and he was way out of line, and did deserve suspension. Shortly after that , another girl,who has been in our unit less than a year, called a doctor a name in front of a patient and his family. When the doc complained, he was told that she would apologize to him. She refused to apologize, and nothing further was done. This girl is often inappropriate to patients, families, and physicians, but it is just overlooked. There are incidents similar to this on a weekly basis, some just as outrageuos, some more subtle, but all very demoralizing. I know that recruitment of new staff is important, but keeping experienced staff happy should be too. Loyalty should be rewarded. I have never thought that there was a place for unions in health care, but I am beginning to think that maybe organizing would stop this kind of treatment? Anyone have any thoughts?
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  2. 48 Comments

  3. by   Brownms46
    Funny you should mention this...as I have an friend who works in a GI procedure setting...and has had some of the very same things happen where she works at!!! I mean....it I didn't know better...I would think you were talking about the same place! She is in the process now of finding another position...after being in this one for 12yrs!!! Plus on of the newbie after less than one year in this place...has just transferred to the ER! This nurse's fav position in this very busy, hectic, and stressful setting...was sitting in one of the recliners...(meant for pts.) with a blanket around her...reading a magazine...with her legs cross! Everytime my friend complains about some of things these people get away with...she is told...that "she" should be more understanding of them...as their young!!! But let her try anything even remotely close to those nurses behavior, and she is called on the carpet! They come in late, and go home early. When they have to pull call...it was supposed to be for the whole week...but for the "special people"...they couldn't possibly do it for the whole week...as they would have to come into work after possibly being up all nite! SOOOOOO?? My friend and everyone else has been doing just that for yearsssss! I'm shocked and surprised...that this is begining to show a pattern here.
  4. by   JMP
    Unions make sure the scales are equal for ALL- new and not so new employees.
  5. by   fedupnurse
    I'm with JMP. I work union and won't work non-union. Healthcare executives couldn't care less about the experienced staff. We cost too much! In my hospital they can hire a new grad for a lot less then they are paying me. They don't care if there is all novice staff thruout the hospital. They don't care that there are not enough staff to train new people. They don't get it. The biggest difference between me and an RN with less than say 2 years experience is that I can walk by a patients room (one I am not even taking care of) and know that person is circling the drain. I have said to new staff over the course of the past several months you need to keep an eye on your guy in 10. I don't like the way he looks. They were like "yeah, sure" and proceeded with their personal phone calls etc. When the guy crapped out a couple of hours later they looked so surprised. But the suits don't care. The caliber of staff leaves a lot to be desired. I really think people are going into this profession now becasue they think they can make a quick buck and they also don't realize how physically and emotionally draining this work is.
    Unions won't come to you, you have to make a call to one. The hospital will fight you tooth and nail.
    Good luck to you and make that call!
  6. by   hapeewendy
    union may protect pay scales and benefits and sick leave and all that tangible "stuff"
    but it certainly doesnt control management or a unit administrators ability to give preferential treatment to new hires.
    for example, those of us that have worked on my floor for awhile, were approached by the clinician and management with tips for how to keep new hires happy and fufilled
    my question is, where the new ppl given tips on how to keep the rest of us happy?
    a friend of mine who was on my 12 hour line, for family reasons approaced the unit admin asking to switch her to 8's and was told no way because 2 new staff were already hired for the 8 hour shifts and there was no way she could fit my friend in the 8 hour line......excuse me but thats a load if ever I've heard one, what about seniority or the fact that this nurse is an excellent care giver and pt advocate? none of that matters obviously.
    I'm not dogging management, they have their function and purpose just like the rest of us do.
    Just wanna let everyone know that the union we love so much is only able to protect us so far...
    with some things ur just on ur own.....
  7. by   JMP
    Unions due protect and I still think it is the wise and smart thing to do........work in an unionized enviroment.

    Yes, there will always be a way for people to play favourites, that is human nature, but all in all unions protect against undue hardship and unfair treatment.

    I do not understand why people fear them? It is a question I have long wondered about.

    The one thing you have to remember about unions, at least here in my part of the world, is that seniority means alot. Days offs, vacation requests and positions are determined by seniority. So around here, seniority COUNTS for alot!!
  8. by   P_RN
    The opinion seems to be we already have these OLD ones. If they're not happy they can go and we can get TWO new ones for the same price.

    Oh yes I noticed it too.
  9. by   catlady
    Better be careful, someone's going to accuse you of eating your young.

    The reality is that you're considered a given--you've been there for a hundred years and they know (or they *think* they know) you're not leaving, no matter what they do to you. They have no such expectation of new staff, and they don't want to lose their "investment."
  10. by   mattsmom81
    Actually, this may be PART of why older nurses are accused of eating their young. It pisses us off to see the new hires getting schedules they want, often the same same pay, at the expense of the senior staff..... I'm easy to get along with, but preferential treatment gets to me.

    I have trained several young nurses in the ICU whom I didn't think were the greatest specimens but I was told to train them, and I did my best. This is no easy task being charge, having your own load and two green trainees on your shift.

    Both were famous for moving about the unit with their cell phones permanently attached to their ears, ignoring alarms and symptoms til it was too late, seldom assisting other nurses, and propping their feet up on their balloon pumps and reading through their shift.....when I counseled them on these behaviors, my director told ME to get off their backs!

    The hardest was watching patients suffer because of their "I don't care" attitudes....since I got no support from above, I began to give them the easiest patients so I wouldn't have to worry so much...but then they complained I wasn't orienting them to the difficult patients. <sigh> Gee, I wonder why...

    They both stayed their obligatory year to collect the 5K sign on bonus (and they told us all constantly this was their plan from the start) then off they went leaving us tired and short (again). I just don't see much in it for us old timers to put a lot of energy into training new folks with this attitude...as they literally do a brain drain on us, then leave. Both these nurses are working critical care agency for the big $$ now.

    I'm always glad to train someone who is eager, has a good work ethic and is a team player. Why don't we get many of those anymore?

    Is the bar is being lowered because of the 'nursing shortage'? I would say yes, IME, but I also don't feel schools are doing enough to prepare the student nurses.

    Sorry so long...I'll step down now..sorry for my 'rant'.
  11. by   fedupnurse
    Mattsmom, I couldn't agree with you more. A few years ago I precepted people who wanted to learn. Now! I get this attitude of yeah, I know that. Well how can you if you've never been in an ICU before. It is really draining especially becasue there are only 5 of us left who are qualified to orient people on nights. Kinda hard to do when you have 7 new hires. I haven't met them yet but I'll guess by 2 years time all but 2 will be gone.
    As far as the union issue HapeeWendy, I agree with JMP again. We have language in our contract that protects seniority. The whole reason our facility organized in the first place, 20 or something years ago, was becasue of favortism. Does it still exist. Sure. For example. We have a whole slew of staff who quit and went agency. For some reason our managers cater to them. I found language in the contract and had a grievance filed because they weren't following the rules. As a result, our staff are now starting to get the shifts they prefer rather than being moved in order to accomdate an agency nurse.
    A union is only as strong as its weakest member. You only get out of it what everyone puts in. Our union isn't strong but there are a handful of us that keep mgmt. in line. I always say, if I am ever missing dredge the bodies of water in my general area and when I am found with concrete shoes on arrest the entire administration at the health system where I work. They are the only enemies I have.
  12. by   CseMgr1
    TELL me about it!! I can't even get HIRED by a hospital, even though I have over 32 years of nursing experience. During the last interview I had at a local hospital, the clinical manager complained to me that nursing schools "expect" hospitals to train their new graduates....then turned around and wouldn't hire me because "I've been out of the clinical area too long". They'd rather spend LESS money on a new graduate, than hire a veteran nurse like me, who has worked in just about every area of nursing. A nurse is a nurse, is a nurse. They just don't GET it!
  13. by   NurseExplorer
    How much preferential treatment should a senior nurse get?
  14. by   ageless
    A senior nurse should not expect preferential treatment, but seniority and respect for experience should be considering factors

    On a side note:
    This week two new nursing grads verified an insulin order and drew up what they thought was the correct dosage per sliding scale. One would have given the patient 60 units of regular insulin INSTEAD of 6 if I had not been (coincidentally) in the room and noticed the error as this new RN was wiping the patient's skin with an alcohol pad! I brought this new RN into the hallway and quietly and privately told her of her error. Her response was less than comforting.. a grin, a flip of her ponytail, and a high-pitched "oops!"

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