Objective: To investigate whether an accreditation program facilitates healthcare organizations (HCOs) to evolve and maintain high-performance human resource management (HRM) systems.
Design: Cross-sectional multimethod study.
Setting and participants: Healthcare organizations participating in the Australian Council on Healthcare Standards Evaluation and Quality Improvement Program (EQuIP 4) between 2007 and 2011.
Main outcome measures: Ratings across the EQuIP 4 HRM criteria, a clinical performance measure, surveyor reports (HRM information) and interview data (opinions and experiences regarding HRM and accreditation).
Results: Healthcare organizations identified as high performing on accreditation HRM criteria seek excellence primarily because of internal motivations linked to best practice. Participation in an accreditation program is a secondary and less significant influence. Notwithstanding, the accreditation program provides the HCO opportunity for internal and external review and assessment of their performance; the accreditation activities are reflective learning and feedback events.
Conclusions: This study reveals that HCOs that pursue highly performing HRM systems use participation in an accreditation program as an opportunity. Their organizational mindset is to use the program as a tool by which to reflect and obtain feedback on their performance so to maintain or improve their management of staff and delivery of care.
Keywords: HRM; accreditation; healthcare; research.
© The Author 2014. Published by Oxford University Press in association with the International Society for Quality in Health Care; all rights reserved.