An Explanatory Model of Nurse Practitioner Job Satisfaction



Job satisfaction influences employee retention, worker productivity, and performance quality. To retain qualified nurse practitioners (NPs), health administrators must identify sources of job satisfaction and dissatisfaction. Herzberg's dual-factor theory of job satisfaction addresses extrinsic and intrinsic work-related factors. Expansion of the model to include global job satisfaction and individual differences provided a broad framework for the assessment of nurse-practitioner job satisfaction. The expanded model was used to analyze the job satisfaction of 132 NPs registered with the South Carolina State Board of Nursing in 1988 (final response rate= 90%). Participants completed the Index of Job Satisfaction (US), the Minnesota Satisfaction Questionnaire-Short Form (MSQ-SF), and the Personal and Work Background Questionnaire (PWBQ). Although the NPs were moderately satisfied with their overall jobs, extrinsic factors were found to be major sources of dissatisfaction. The optimal combination of variables predicted by regression analysis to influence global job satisfaction were age, number of children, urban locations, achievement, company policies and practices, creativity, independence, and compensation. Implications for health administrators to improve the work environments of NPs are discussed.