Working Mother Names UW Hospital One of 100 Best Companies

MADISON - For the second straight year, University of Wisconsin Hospital and Clinics has received the prestigious honor of being named one of the nation's 100 best companies for working parents by Working Mother magazine. The hospital was the only Dane County company to receive the award and only one of three in Wisconsin to be honored.

Working Mother 100 Best Companies 2008Working Mother selected University of Wisconsin Hospital and Clinics as one of its "100 Best" companies to work for after assessing the hospital's culture, family-friendly programs, flexibility and time off, opportunities for growth and development and benefits for part-time workers.

UW Hospital and Clinics President and CEO, Donna Katen-Bahensky applauded a number of hospital programs that have benefited employees and their families, such as its array of flexible scheduling options.

"Flexible schedules allow employees the chance to go to school, take care of family members, share jobs, do a lot of things that make it easier for them to participate in their families' lives," she said. "This engages the whole family, not just the employee who works there."
Attracting Generations
Brett and Denise Buenzli, University of Wisconsin Hospital and Clinics employeesThese factors also help UW Hospital and Clinics attract generations of employees. When Brett Buenzli contemplated a career in health care, his mom was his biggest fan. Having been a nurse at UW Hospital and Clinics for 24 years, Denise Buenzli has always loved working at UW Hospital and Clinics and highly recommended that her son come join her.
Exceptional benefits can certainly sway someone towards a job, but for Denise it's been that and much more. She says UW Hospital and Clinics truly values and cares about each employee. And as a working parent, Denise has also appreciated the amazing support, opportunities for growth, and flexibility in her
As a child, Brett saw UW Hospital and Clinics as "the big, cool hospital" his mom went to every day - and remembers always wanting to work there too.
"I always wanted to be here," says Brett (pictured, with his mother Denise). Now as a respiratory therapist, Brett enjoys everything UW Hospital and Clinics has to offer, especially flexible scheduling and tuition reimbursement.
Not yet a parent himself, Brett feels privileged knowing that if he does become a
dad, he's working in the right place.
Wellness Programs, Family Picnics and More
Katen-Bahensky says successful family-friendly programs are aimed at retaining employees.

"We offer a tremendously strong wellness program that encourages employees and their families to do things like increase their physical activity, manage stress, eat better, and stop smoking," Katen-Bahensky says.
"For example, we began offering a Community Supported Agriculture program, which conveniently delivers organic vegetables to employees' worksites on a weekly basis to bring home to their families," she added. "We also routinely offer fun events for employees and their families, such as picnics, ice skating or swimming pool parties and walks for community causes."

Katen-Bahensky added that employee growth and development has always been a priority, but during this past year, the hospital's Career Week was expanded to allow both employees and their dependents to get counseling to plan their own or children's education and related savings plans.

Retaining Employees
Hospital Vice President for Human Resources Jan Bultema credits the programs aimed at working parents for retaining the hospital's work staff and filling vacant positions.
"We have experienced a continuing decline in our turnover rates and we have among the lowest nursing vacancy rates in the nation in a time when there is a serious nurse shortage," Bultema said. "This is why they choose to come and work at UW Hospital and Clinics. It's something we're quite proud of but more importantly, it is an encouraging sign that our employees are positive about the work environment and as a result, stay here for a very long time."
University of Wisconsin Hospital and Clinics employs 7,300 staff, and women make up approximately 75 percent of the workforce.

Working Mother has two million readers and is the only national publication for career-oriented mothers.
Learn more about the award and UW Hospital and Clinics benefits and programs: Working Mother Award

Date Published: 09/23/2008

News tag(s):  recognition

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