Publications

Effects of ethical climate in association with tenure on work addiction, quality of care and staff retention: a cross-sectional study

"The article studies an organizational lever, namely the ethical climate, as a vector of several positive spin-offs, for both caregivers and patients. Considering that the data was collected across Canada during the omicron wave, the article presents an interesting portrait of healthcare networks and the people who make them up in times of crisis." Francis Maisonneuve

In 2023, the article Effects of ethical climate in association with tenure on work addiction, quality of care and staff retention: a cross-sectional study was published. Denis Chênevert, Scientific Co-Director of the Change Management Axis (Pôle Santé HEC Montréal) of the Unité de soutien SSA Québec, is one of the authors.

“The article studies an organizational lever, namely the ethical climate, as a vector of several positive spin-offs, for both caregivers and patients. Considering that the data was collected across Canada during the omicron wave, the article presents an interesting portrait of healthcare networks and the people who make them up in times of crisis.”

Francis Maisonneuve, Pôle Santé HEC Montréal and co-author of the article Effects of ethical climate in association with tenure on work addiction, quality of care and staff retention: a cross-sectional study
  • Francis Maisonneuve, MSc
  • Human Resource Management, HEC Montreal, Quebec, Canada
  • Patrick Groulx, MSc, PhD
  • Management, HEC Montreal, Quebec, Canada
  • Denis Chênevert, DSc
  • Human Resource Management, HEC Montreal, Quebec, Canada
  • Colleen Grady, DBA
  • Family Medecine, Queen’s University, Kingston, Ontario, Canada
  • Angela Coderre-Ball, PhD
  • Family Medecine, Queen’s University, Kingston, Ontario, Canada

Background

This study examines the various effects of the ethical climate on health and social services workers in Canada. In particular, how this organizational climate is associated with work addiction among this population, and subsequently, with their intention to remain in their profession and the perceived quality of care provided. Moreover, from a social learning perspective, tenure is used as a moderating variable to study how these different relationships are experienced by new recruits.

“Ethical climate is defined as the explicit presentation of
(a) the manner in which decisions with ethical content are resolved,
or (b) the presence of organizational conditions that enable employees to engage in ethical reflection, or both.”

Francis Maisonneuve, Pôle Santé HEC Montréal and coauthor of the article Effects of ethical climate in association with tenure on work addiction, quality of care and staff retention: a cross-sectional study

Method

During the first Omicron wave of Covid-19, several initiatives were undertaken to reach as many respondents as possible across the various healthcare facilities in Canada. This episode was a crucial moment in the pandemic and proved to be an opportune time to collect data on the perception of workplaces by health and social services workers. A total of 860 complete questionnaires were collected and analyzed using structural equation modeling and multiple regressions. 

Results

As theorized, ethical climate has a significant and beneficial relationship, both directly and indirectly via work addiction, with intention to leave the profession and perceived quality of care. Moreover, all the relationships observed were even more pronounced for workers with lower tenure.

Conclusion

Ethical climate is associated with a cascade of desirable effects, such as a lower level of work addiction, intention to leave the profession and a higher level of perceived quality of care offered. Health and social services organizations should therefore invest in developing this type of climate, especially for their new recruits.

To cite

Maisonneuve F, Groulx P, Chênevert D, et al Effects of ethical climate in association with tenure on work addiction, quality of care and staff retention: a cross-sectional study. BMJ Quality & Safety 2024;33:24-32.