Context: Public health financial competencies are often overlooked or underrepresented in public health training programs. These skills are important for public health workforce members who are involved in managing resources and strategic planning and have been defined as key competencies by several national entities. Objective: To characterize business skills among state health agency employees and examine self-reported skill levels and their association with job satisfaction, worksite training and development opportunities, and annual salary. Design: A cross-sectional survey, the Public Health Workforce Interests and Needs Survey (PH WINS), of state health agency central office employees was conducted in 2014. Multivariable logistic regression analyses, controlling for job classification, supervisory status, years of public health practice, annual compensation, educational attainment, geographic region, and sociodemographic status, were used to assess the relationship between business skills and training environment and job satisfaction. Linear regression was used to correlate business skills and annual compensation. Setting and Participants: A total of 10 246 state health agency staff completed a Web-based survey. Main Outcome Measure: Self-reported proficiency in business skills, job satisfaction, opportunities for training, and annual salary. Results: The workforce reported high levels of proficiency in applying quality improvement concepts and managing change (67.5% and 69.2%, respectively). Half of the respondents reported proficiency in budget skills (49.3%). Participants who were proficient in applying quality improvement concepts were significantly more likely to report job satisfaction (OR = 1.27). A supportive training environment was significantly associated with business competencies (range of OR = 1.08-1.11). Managing change (β = .15) and budget skill proficiency (β = .37) were significantly associated with increased yearly compensation. Conclusions: Public health workers who self-report proficiency with business skills report increased job satisfaction, higher annual salary, and a supportive training environment. These findings support the need for the development of appropriately designed business skill training opportunities to increase competencies in this critical domain.
- Business skills
- Public Health Workforce Interests and Needs Survey (PH WINS)
- Public health workforce
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Health Policy
- Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health