Chronic Tardiness

  1. We waiting for a nurse to float from another floor this morning because we had two call ins. She was 25 minutes late. We bowed down at her feet "oh thank goodness you're here". She's 'sorry I'm late'. Earlier I had called her floor where they said "she's always late".

    Have we created due to the nursing shortage an environment where tardiness is tolerated because we are greatful they even show up? Seem so at this hospital that tardiness is tolerated. The people don't even seem to have an excuse or care, they just want the hours to be 7:15 instead of 6:45. Of course they usually are the ones chomping at the bits to go home on time.

    So the question is, what is your policy on tardiness. Is it enforced. Have we created a culture of mediocrity in nursing because of the "shortage"?
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  2. 102 Comments

  3. by   shodobe
    The problem is always the same; you talk to them till your blue in the face and nothing happens. Do you fire them? Do you suspend them? Just what do you do. The problem we have is the nurses in question are very good nurses and you would have a tough time replacing them. I quess my boss just tries to get across the added stress it creates with the staff. To tell you the truth I just ignore it and get on with my job. I know this is not an answer but I quess you have to look at each individual and try to decide whose a "KEEPER" and who would you like to get rid of, if they are violating a policy. Good Luck! Mike
  4. by   Gldngrl
    Therein lies the problem shodobe, you can not pick who you will discipline based upon favourable attributes. If you have a policy and choose to actively enforce it, you must enforce it consistently to all violators or risk legal action.
  5. by   Zinnia
    The best "when a patient is in trouble or crashing" nurse is chronically late, if fact, we call her ten minute mary. But the fact is at least once a month she oversleeps and is a good HOUR late. She was employee of the year for 2001. She knows everyone ,and eveyone loves her.
    She works the 3am to 3pm shift and doesn't go to bed so has trouble getting up.
    I was raised so differently.
    I think her chronic lateness is very disrespectful, but everyone just laughs.."that's Mary!"
    The problem is she is a damned good nurse, I would be the first to say so, but her lateness is chronically overlooked.
  6. by   fedupnurse
    So true about the late ones chomping at the bit when you come in 15 minutes early...I have yet to have a boss who admonishes staff for being chronically late. SO, when there is a particular person who relieves me late and I am back that night, I come in my usual time, clock in and then allow that person to give me report at the time they allowed me to give report. If they finally showed up at 720 am then they aren't talking to me until 720 pm. SO far it has worked 4 or 5 times over the years.
  7. by   pej11uk
    being a good nurse is not an excuse for tardiness. i don't think she's a good nurse at all if she chronically late for her shifts. i believe that she needs to be confronted with this issue by yourself or your manager (with supporting documents i.e occsions and frequency of her tardiness). i am aware of staff shortage but everybody should have the responsibility of not adding any more "insult to injury".
  8. by   FROGGYLEGS
    At an old job there was one nurse who would show up 30 minutes to an hour late EVERY day and when she finally moseyed in she would grab the telephone for a quick 15 minute wake up call to her daughter. Everybody got together and complained about it to the nurse manager. Her solution....we should all relieve her late and she will stop.

    At my current job if my relief is there by 7am I am shocked. They are supposed to be there at 6:45, but 730 is more common. What is especially funny is that if I'm not there by 6:46 every member of mgmt has been notified and they have usually left the keys and went home.

    After years of dealing with the tardiness, I am used to it and it doesn't really bother me that much any more.

    My personal pet peeve: when I get to work (on time I might add) and the nurse I relieve is off the unit. Then she comes back and hasn't finished the report yet, hasn't signed off the MARS, hasn't signed out a single narc, hasn't cleaned off the med cart and I have to wait on her for the next hour to finish her stuff before I can begin on mine.
  9. by   live4today
    Love your quote FROGGYLEGS!

    If a person wants a job, they should respect the hours of that job and be on time. If they are chronic about being timely, they deserve to be let go...fired...dismissed....whatever word is more "soothing" for ya to hear. :chuckle
  10. by   Mama Val
    Hey are you guys talking about me :imbar
    I hate to say it but I am the one who is always late or right on the nose. Where I work our shifts start and end at the same time, no overlap for report (thank you management). They want us to be in 15 min early for the other nurses. Fine I can do that if they do it for me. Problem is that the nurse comming in uses this time to make and get her coffee ready, do her make up or what ever else she does in the BR, then when she is ready I can give her a quick, just give me the important stuff bullet. So whne I come in I just throw my stuff on the table grab my book and my pen and I am ready. I have to admit that no matter how hard I try or early I start out I am always rushing to get to work. It irritating and all I do is yell at what ever innocent is in my way at the time...move, move..MOVE
  11. by   altomga
    TARDINESS:angryfire I can't stand it when people show up to work late (chronically) What happened to good work ethics??? I live almost an hour away from my facility and I am always ON TIME!!! (early actually; I can't stand rushing straight in and putting my butt into the fire immediately ) I leave my house early b/c u never know if an accident has happened and will delay you.
    Or you might get caught at the train tracks
    And right now they are repaving the major highway I drive.

    I feel that you know the expectations of the job and should respect your co-workers enough to show up on time.....I know these people definately want to leave ON TIME!!

    Everyone is human and sometime or another you might be a little late, but be courteous and call and let them know.....I stopped at an accident one time that occured right in front of me (the vehicle flipped onto it's roof and there were kids in the car) While I am holding C-spine on a little boy I get someone to get my cell phone and dial my work number so I can tell them why I am going to be late. Common courtesy!!!

    The management at my facility does nothing...there are those that clock in (on time actually) and then go downstairs to get breakfast!!!!!!! What's up with that???? Mgmn't needs to come down on these staff members....It is not fair to those of us that come to work on time and ready......Favortism goes to the tardy ones; not the ones that do their job in every aspect possible.....

    Is it b/c they don't want to lose the body???? Well SH**, the body isn't there anyway!!!!
  12. by   MandyInMS
    I'm a chronic early bird..I've even TRIED to be late...I can't stand itttt!!! always come in and get the count over with,check the code cart,make sure the pt list is correct,yanno, the little BS stuff that has to be done...so when the others get there we can go ahead and start report (not late hopefully)...Not saying everyone should be as neurotic as I am ..but at least be on time...guess my Mom instilled in me that it's rude to make others wait. Most of my shift is at least on time..maybe 5 minutes late tops...other shifts have nurses that 20-30 minutes late is the norm...aggrivates me to no end..thank heavens for taped report
  13. by   MomNRN
    I also can't stand being late. I am never late, almost obsessive about being on time - it drives my husband crazy.

    When I worked third shift, I would have everything ready to go, so I could leave on time. I had rounded up all the narc keys, was ready to pounce on the first day shifter to go through the med cart, had the patient sheet ready, and had taped my patient report. Nothing more aggravating than having to wait for the relief to show up! It made me so angry.

    I was ready to go home and get my kids off to school. Sure my husband could do it, but they wanted to see mom before they left.

    I felt it was inconsiderate and rude, and yes managment always put up with it!
  14. by   shodobe
    I think alot has to do which department you work in. I work in the OR and we only run 2-3 rooms at any given time. We have the problem where we have quite a few surgeons who are always late, anywhere from 15 minutes to an hour! This brushes off onto staff and they have the opinion that if Dr so in so is svheduled then I know I don't have to be there until such and such time. It is bad but we deal with it. The only shift change comes at 3pm so it doesn't envolve many people. I use to be the guy that come in 30 minutes in the morning before shift and sat down and read the paper and relaxed before the day began. I now work a later shift and I am usually on time except for the times I am late getting over from the other hospital I work at. It seems the OR has the most trouble, at least here, filling open positions. Most grads do not even consider the OR therefore we do not want to lose people based on shoddy attendance. We have had two positions open for over 4 months without an application.I know most would still say fire them or what ever but that isn't logical. You just have to continually remind them that it isn't fair to their fellow employees. It helps for awile and then they get a little lax. I have to say the everyone in my department is extremely valuable and I would rather take up the slack than to lose them over this issue. If a department has the luxury of a number of applicants, mostly new grads, to choose from then I say watch out if you are one of these chronic, tardy individuals. I just remmbered we also have a policy for people that tend to call-off alot. If you call in sick more than 3 times in 6 months you get a verbal warning; after that you can be suspended. I don't think I have ever heard this being enforced though. There is no good one answer to this problem, remember, "what goes around comes around". Mike

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