Outsourcing Exit Interviews at Health First Cut Turnover Costs by Over $1 Million


Health First was experiencing significant system-wide turnover by its Registered Nurses (RNs). Initially, Health First conducted internal surveys to determine why RNs were leaving. Despite its efforts, the quality of data and the quantity of responses Health First received from these internal surveys were inadequate to effectively make needed changes in the organization. After multiple attempts to capture exit data internally, Health First turned to People Element in to help them identify the reasons behind RN turnover.


  • Exit interviews

Data from internal surveys inadequate for change:
People Element implemented its exit interview program to manage Health First’s RN turnover. As an impartial third party performing exit interviews and collecting data, People Element was able to increase participation and collect meaningful data, resulting in an 80% adjusted capture rate. In addition, People Element was able to provide Health First with clear and actionable data. Follow up on key action items identified by People Element’s consultants allowed nurse leaders to hold managers accountable and create targeted retention strategies.

“Your 80% adjusted capture rate has greatly exceeded our own efforts, and has provided us valuable feedback from nurses who have left us.”
– Dennis Vouglas, Director of Employee Relations, Health First

About Health First, Inc.

Health First is Central Florida’s only fully-integrated health system. The not-for-profit health system has over 7,800 employees and operates four hospitals in Brevard County, Florida. The system also provides outpatient clinics, home health services, a physician group, and health insurance plans. Their mission is to improve the health of their community.


  • Turnover costs reduced by $1,150,000
  • Three year decline in turnover
  • Obtained a calculated ROI instead of estimated

Sustained improvement: 3 Year Decline in Turnover:
Through its partnership with People Element, Health First was able to decrease RN turnover, create awareness of the impact line managers have in RN turnover, improve employee morale, improve the quality of care provided to patients, and reduce the cost of burden on the hospital system. Bottom line savings became measurable for the organization and turnover costs reduced by $1,150,000, giving them a ROI far exceeding the cost of the exit interview program.

People Element’s ability to capture actionable data and provide solutions that worked for Health First’s organization and culture resulted in many successes, including: Direct action impacted frontline supervisor performance resulting in turnover decline (Palm Bay Hospital); review of the onboarding experience impacted new hire retention through the creation of check in points (Holmes Regional Medical Center); and coaching of Home Health Director resulted in reduced turnover and improved behavior (Cape Canaveral Hospital).

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