First Advisor

Dr. Kathleen Whalen


Rueckert-Hartman College for Health Professions

Degree Name

Doctor of Nursing Practice

Document Type

Thesis - Open Access

Number of Pages

66 pages



In this large system infusion center, there is not a current acuity-based scheduling system. The nurses’ workload is directly impacted by the way patients are scheduled. The purpose of this quality improvement project was to gain an understanding of nurses’ perception of their workload throughout the day. The goal is to understand perceptions to drive improvements in the way patients are scheduled. A descriptive cross-sectional design was conducted using survey methodology, demographics and five open- ended questions. The Individual Workload Perception Scale-Revised tool was used to measure manager support, peer support, unit support, workload, intent to stay, and overall nurse satisfaction. Cronbach’s Alpha for each of these domains ranged from 0.64 to 0.93. The five open- ended questions were directly inquiring about what makes the best workday, the worse workday, what affects their workload, and what takes the most time during their workday. A convenience sample size of 44 nurses completed the survey which was an 88% response rate. Regression analysis found a statistical significance between peer support, unit support, workload, and the intent to stay. Pearson correlation showed a moderate positive correlation with nurse satisfaction and intent to stay (p =.000). The survey results were overall positive. The open-ended questions revealed overarching themes. The scheduling of patients and teamwork affects their workday. If the schedule is level loaded and there is good teamwork that day the nurses are satisfied. If the schedule is not level loaded and there is not good teamwork the nurses are dissatisfied. These results can be used to support the continued improvement of how patients are scheduled. Phase two of this project is to build and implement an acuity-based scheduling system to improve level loading of patients throughout the day.

Key words: acuity-based scheduling, pediatric nurse perception, workload, DNP Project

Date of Award

Spring 2021

Location (Creation)

Denver, Colorado