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Depiction of Health. 2024;15(2): 149-158.
doi: 10.34172/doh.2024.12
  Abstract View: 136
  PDF Download: 46

Health Care System Management

Original Article

Impact of Knowledge Transfer on Empowerment among Personnel of Teaching Hospitals: A Cross-Sectional Study

Roohangiz Taheri 1 ORCID logo, Mansoure Salmani 1 ORCID logo, Saeideh Moosavi 2 ORCID logo, Rohollah Kalhor 3* ORCID logo

1 Department of Healthcare Services Management, School of Health, Qazvin University of Medical Sciences, Qazvin, Iran
2 Department of Occupational Health and Safety, School of Health, Qazvin University of Medical Sciences, Qazvin, Iran
3 Social Determinants of Health Research Center, Research Institute for Prevention of Non-Communicable Diseases, Qazvin University of Medical Sciences, Qazvin, Iran
*Corresponding Author: Email: R.kalhor@gmail.com

Abstract

Background. The value of services in healthcare institutions such as hospitals is created by leveraging the knowledge, skills, and experiences of their healthcare staff. Therefore, knowledge transfer is necessary to empower the employees in the hospital. Since few studies have explored the impact of knowledge transfer on the empowerment of hospital employees, this study aimed to investigate the impact of knowledge transfer and its components on employees' empowerment in Qazvin teaching hospitals.

Methods. In this descriptive-analytic and cross-sectional study, 330 teaching hospital staff members of Qazvin University of Medical Sciences were investigated between February 2020 and May 2020. The required data were collected using the Knowledge Transfer Questionnaire (De-Castro, et al., 2008) and the Empowerment Questionnaire (Spreitzer, 1992). The data were analyzed using the correlation method and structural equation analysis (SEM) as well as using SPSS-22 and AMOS software.

Results. There was a direct relationship between the dimensions of knowledge transfer and personnel empowerment (P<0.001), and all examined dimensions were above average. Moreover, the dimensions of knowledge transfer also had a significant impact on personnel empowerment. Regarding the fit of the model, the values of GFI, CFI, and NFI indices were obtained above 0.90. In addition, the RMSEA index was 0.074, which indicated the good fit of the model.

Conclusion. In summary, the staff's empowerment level was enhanced through the knowledge transfer. Therefore, it was recommended that the hospital managers should improve the level of workers' empowerment by implementing effective strategies, such as providing training courses for the employees.


Extended Abstract

Background

Knowledge management is a challenging process because it is difficult to fully appreciate its real value, utilize it optimally through knowledge management, extract the accumulated knowledge of members, and share it with everyone. Furthermore, the quality of human resources is one of the significant factors contributing to the survival of organizations. Medical centers are one of the most important service-providing facilities that play a significant role in maintaining and promoting the physical and mental health of patients. Thus, staff empowerment in medical centers requires more special attention than in other organizations. One of the significant factors affecting the implementation of knowledge transfer in organizations is staff empowerment. The value of services in healthcare institutions, such as hospitals, is created by utilizing the knowledge, skills, and experiences of their health staff. Therefore, knowledge transfer is necessary to empower hospital employees. Since few studies had explored the impact of knowledge transfer on the hospital employees' empowerment, this study aimed to investigate the impact of knowledge transfer and its components on employees' empowerment in Qazvin teaching hospitals.

Methods

In this descriptive-analytical study conducted between February 2020 and May 2020, a cross-sectional method was adopted to investigate the staff working in five teaching hospitals affiliated with Qazvin University of Medical Sciences. Out of all the staff working in the hospitals, 331 individuals were selected using Morgan's Table. Due to the possibility of a 10% of dropout rate in the samples, 365 questionnaires were distributed, considering the number of staff in each hospital. Then the samples were selected from each hospital using systematic random sampling. Out of 365 questionnaires distributed among the staff, finally, 330 completed and analyzable questionnaires (90.4% response rate) were included in the study and analyzed. De-Castro's Standard Knowledge Transfer Questionnaire and Spreitzer's Empowerment Questionnaire were used to collect the required data. The Standard Knowledge Transfer Questionnaire included 14 questions on three dimensions of socialization, integration, and internalization. It was designed based on a five-point Likert scale (i.e., I strongly disagree, I disagree, I have no opinion, I agree, and I strongly agree). The reliability of this questionnaire was confirmed at 0.86 using Cronbach's alpha coefficient. The empowerment questionnaire also includes five dimensions of feeling meaningful or important, feeling competent (self-efficacy), feeling effective, feeling the right to choose (independence), and feeling confident in others, which are measured based on a five-point Likert scale (i.e., very high, high, moderate, low, and very low). Its reliability was confirmed using Cronbach's alpha coefficient (0.847). The data were analyzed using SPSS-22 and AMOS software, and were reported using descriptive and inferential statistics. A structural equation model (SEM) was employed to determine the relationship between variables. Chi-square indices, goodness of fit, root mean square error, adjusted comparative fit index, and normalized goodness of fit index were used to fit the obtained model.

Results

The results revealed that out of the 330 study participants, 21.2% of them (n=70) were males and 78.8% of them (n=260) were females. Majority of the staff (256 individuals, 77.6%) had a bachelor's degree, and the mean of all examined dimensions was above average. Furthermore, a direct relationship was found between the dimensions of knowledge transfer and the capability of staff (P≤0.05). Out of all dimensions of empowerment, the meaningfulness dimension had the highest factor load. In addition, a path coefficient of 0.34 was obtained between competence and knowledge transfer. The value of the t-statistic for all path coefficients was greater than 1.96, which was confirmed; therefore, all path coefficients were significant. Regarding the fit of the model, the values of GFI, CFI, and NFI indices were obtained above 0.90. In addition, the RMSEA index was 0.074, which indicated the good fit of the model.

Conclusion

In summary, the knowledge transfer affected the staff empowerment. Socialization had the highest coefficient among the dimensions of knowledge transfer; in other words, it exerted the greatest effect on empowerment, which may have been enhanced by adopting appropriate measures. Furthermore, the dimension of internalization and integration had a lower effect on the knowledge transfer and indirectly affected the staff empowerment, which may have been enhanced and used more frequently by the organizations. These three dimensions indirectly affected the empowerment and its dimensions. It was suggested that the capabilities of individuals should be identified by adopting appropriate measures and be improved by planning, and that the level of knowledge transfer should be increased in the organizations. To this end, it was recommended that the hospital managers should adopt effective strategies (e.g., holding training courses for employees) in order to improve the workers' empowerment level.

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Submitted: 30 Sep 2023
Revision: 24 Jan 2024
Accepted: 14 May 2024
ePublished: 19 May 2024
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