Health service accreditation reinforces a mindset of high-performance human resource management

Lessons from an Australian study

D. Greenfield*, A. Kellner, K. Townsend, A. Wilkinson, S. A. Lawrence

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

12 Citations (Scopus)


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.

Original languageEnglish
Article numbermzu039
Pages (from-to)372-377
Number of pages6
JournalInternational Journal for Quality in Health Care
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - Aug 2014
Externally publishedYes


  • Accreditation
  • Healthcare
  • HRM
  • Research

Fingerprint Dive into the research topics of 'Health service accreditation reinforces a mindset of high-performance human resource management: Lessons from an Australian study'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

  • Projects

  • A dynamic model linking organisational systems to clinical performance in Australian hospitals

    Greenfield, D., Townsend, K. & Wilkinson, A.


    Project: Research

    Cite this