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Registered nurses' experiences of rewarding in a Finnish University Hospital – an interview study




The purpose was to describe Finnish registered nurses' experiences of rewarding. The aim was to gather detailed information on the rewarding of nurses to help nurse managers and leaders to update existing reward strategy and to develop an effective reward system.


Rewarding has been found positively to influence nurses' occupational well-being and commitment to their work, and the attractiveness of the health care field.


A series of focused interviews with 10 registered nurses was conducted in 2011. Qualitative content analysis method was used.


The nurses reported positive experiences with rewarding in the form of monetary compensation and other benefits, the positive aspects of nursing work and opportunities for professional development. The experiences of unsatisfactory rewarding generally stemmed from negative emotional experiences, lacking rewards and inequality in rewarding.


It is essential to listen to nurses and to provide appropriate acknowledgement and appreciation of their work in order to develop an effective reward system.

Implications for nursing management

It is important to listen to nurses' experiences of rewarding because it enables nurse managers to maintain and increase the attractiveness of nursing and health care work in general.