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Perioperative Orientation Resources

A Guide to Orientation, Recruitment, and Retention 

Hospitals can easily fall prey to the urgency to “push” nurses through orientation.  However, research shows that nurses who have a solid understanding of the fundamentals, a clinical preceptorship, and a firm grasp on policy and procedure, are better investments in the health and welfare of our patients. 

The tools in the Perioperative Orientation Resources guide make it easy for educators and managers to apply AORN’s orientation guidelines.  The guide builds on the scope of the successful Periop 101 course and establishes a baseline for competency development and assessment.  

Perioperative Orientation Resources offers resources to develop recruitment, orientation, preceptor selection, and retention strategies in your facility.  

Recruitment Strategies 

This section discusses strategies to facilitate the recruitment process and hiring incentive programs, and tactics for promoting perioperative nursing as nursing schools. 

Orientation Guidelines and Required Competencies 

The required competencies and suggested timelines for orienting a novice or experienced nurse into the OR environment can be used as a baseline to build your facility’s program. Educators and preceptors are provided with tools that can be used to evaluate the orientee’s needs upon arrival in the OR. 

Preceptor Selection 

Selecting the right preceptor is just as important as selecting the right perioperative nurse candidate. This section includes a detailed preceptor development checklist, behavior-based interview questions for preceptor selection, and guidelines for ongoing preceptor development and performance evaluations. 

Retention Strategies 

As you recruit nurses, you can’t lose sight of the need to retain current staff. Improving staff satisfaction and building strong teams start with assessing with work environment and seeking feedback at regular intervals. 


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