Date of Award

Fall 1987

Degree Type

Thesis - Restricted

Degree Name

Master of Science (MS)



First Advisor

Wake, Madeline

Second Advisor

Schank, Mary Jane

Third Advisor

Robinson, Richard


Product line management is a recently adopted organizational approach for hospitals. It has had a significant impact on work systems and operational management strategies. Attention is directed to the role of the manager within product line management. This exploratory study describes selection criteria for hiring product line managers for hospitals as perceived by hospital executives and nurse executives. The categories of selection criteria that were studied were educational background, specialized knowledge, work related experience (positions and functions), and personal abilities. Subjects were asked to indicate their opinion of which criteria were essential, important, unimportant, or detrimental when considering candidates for product line managers for hospitals. Two hundred ninety-four hospital and nurse executives representing all of the Wisconsin hospitals (147) were surveyed via a fifty-item mailed questionnaire. returned {38.8% response rate). for analysis of all responses. One hundred fourteen surveys were Frequency distributions were utilized Analysis and interpretation focused upon which selection criteria were most frequently selected as being "essential" as well as how the findings compared when data was clustered into the response sets of "essential or important" versus "unimportant or detrimental." Relationships between the responses of the hospital executive group and the nurse executive group were analyzed by comparing the two sets of frequency distributions and calculating a chi square test for significance. A description of selection criteria for hiring product line managers for hospitals (as perceived by hospital and nurse executives of 92 Wisconsin hospitals) was generated. The description includes a focus on knowledge and experience in the following areas: finance, marketing, management, product awareness, and strong personal abilities. The relationship of responses between the hospital executives and nurse executives indicated agreement on those qualities as being essential or important in considering candidates for hiring product line managers for hospitals.