Nearly half of the states in the country, as well as more than 25 cities and counties, will be raising their minimum wage in 2020. Many already have. For medical facilities like yours, this means one thing: you must remain competitive by offering your nurses fair compensation and benefits. After all, nurses list salary as the number-one consideration for a nursing position, followed in a distant second place by benefits. So, the question is, are your employee benefits and compensation competitive enough?
The Importance of Fair Wages
There are many reasons why fair wages are an essential part of maintaining your nursing facility’s functionality. First and foremost, you’ll have a high turnover rate if you aren’t offering a competitive salary. Nurses won’t have much of a reason to stick around if they can easily find higher wages elsewhere. That means inconsistent care for your patients, not to mention more hours and money spent hiring and training new employees. And if your facility gets a reputation for low-balling salaries and benefits, you’ll notice that the cream of the crop candidates does not even bother filling out an application.
Remember to Negotiate
Of course, no one expects that your facility doles out top dollar to every new hire. It’s just not possible. But a healthy negotiation between your facility and the nursing candidate is important — that means the nurse feels that they’ve bargained for a better salary and/or benefits package, while on the other hand, your facility hasn’t merely given in to the first demands that the candidate makes. This kind of negotiation is how you manage to pay your nurses appropriately and competitively based on experience level without turning away qualified candidates thanks to offers that are way too low.
Alternatives to Higher Salaries
Sometimes, the money isn’t there to offer higher salaries to your new hires or to give your existing nurses raises. That’s where the alternatives come in. Many savvy nurses will be tempted by things other than salary — opportunities for growth and advancement, tuition reimbursement for higher education, overtime opportunities, and of course, competitive and compelling benefits like good health insurance and a retirement plan. Working with all of these factors in conjunction will help your facility to give competitive offers to job candidates, even if you can’t offer higher salaries than some of your competitors.
Do you need help setting up competitive benefits and compensation structure at your medical facility? Get in touch with BOS Medical to see how our staffing service can help.