Even prior to the pandemic of 2020 the landscape of healthcare started to change. Demographics impact the changes in healthcare as one of the largest generations begins to age out, both as medical professionals and patients needing medical attention. Technology has certainly enhanced healthcare and, in the wake of the Covid pandemic the need for medical staff has never been greater. These are the trends that color the future of healthcare.
With the changing landscape of healthcare in the US come changes in the hiring practice. Driven by the current trends the way of healthcare recruitment has changed as has the process by which organizations hire their medical staff. Here we explore the future of healthcare driven by these changes and how it impacts hiring trends today and in the years to come.
Factors Driving Changes in Healthcare Staff Recruitment
There’s no denying one of the most impactful factors that altered healthcare throughout this country and the world was the global Covid pandemic. Record numbers of healthcare professionals-nurses, physicians and clinical workers-left their jobs in a fury of burnout. But, beyond the nursing shortage crisis that was the fallout, other trends surfaced, many in a more positive and beneficial way for patients and healthcare workers alike.
The digital age is upon us and it’s changing the future of healthcare. The new technology transforms the way patients access and receive care. And the patient experience seems to be a positive one.
The underlying changes digital technology drives across the board may be difficult at first, especially for traditional providers with an older patient base, but it’s catching on rapidly. In fact the CDC sites a 2021 survey in which they found a whopping 37% of patients utilized telehealth as a means for primary care. One of the biggest groups to utilize telemedicine? 43% of those patients were over 65.
As mentioned above, the aging population is growing rapidly. Obviously more medical attention is necessary as patients age. This impacts many healthcare organizations and is certain to grow. Chronic conditions, hospital stays, rehabilitation, assisted living and skilled nursing facilities all point to a surge in the need for additional staff to address the concerns of an aging population.
Remember that among the aging population are many healthcare professionals. In fact the American Association of Medical Colleges estimates a shortage of about 100,00 physicians by the year 2030. One can assume the need for support staff-nurses, clinic workers and the like-will mirror that shortage.
These are the top three trends that point to exponential growth in healthcare. Of course that means there are challenges in recruiting and hiring quality staff. We offer some hiring trends your practice should know and follow to address employee turnover and ensure patient care satisfaction.
We need only reflect on the past few years to understand how burnout drives hiring trends. Doing what you can to retain your staff means preventing burnout among your healthcare workers by not over scheduling or short-shifting your nursing staff, offering incentives for PTO, listening to their needs and most of all communicating expectations. Burnout takes a huge toll on the healthcare community and it needs to be addressed. By incorporating solutions to prevent burnout recruiting and retaining quality staff for your healthcare practice is sure to be more successful.
Hiring Trends Your Practice Should Know
For many healthcare organizations the sheer multitude of open staffing positions is frightening. Fumbling through a changing healthcare landscape means in addition to filling current open positions you must also make sure your hires are adept in meeting the needs of your patient base. To that end we offer the hiring trends in healthcare you need to know for a successful practice.
1. The New Normal: Remote Virtual Interviews
Let’s face it, virtual everything became popular during the pandemic. The recruiting and interview process for healthcare is no exception. Remote interviewing allows healthcare practices the ability to reach and qualify potential candidates from a much broader pool of candidates. Analytics and digital assessments underscore ways in which recruitment practices can be refined, allowing for a more discerning process.
As for those job seekers who may be a good fit? Most job seekers appreciate a simplified approach to interviews, as well as those anxiety-inducing factors with which we’re all familiar. A remote virtual interview reduces the time and energy it takes for the initial interview process. And the virtual recruitment process leads to a hiring process that’s far more equitable as reported by the online group Handshake Network Trends.
2. Strengthening Your Organization’s Brand
Today’s new era of healthcare professionals prefer to work for a practice with whom their values align. The overall environment of your practice is formed by the mission, culture, priorities and values and these factors form your brand. The individuals you want to recruit have a common desire to improve healthcare outcomes and positively impact the lives of those in the community.
Take some time to evaluate the brand you’re promoting and make changes to underscore your values and your mission. Put the appropriate message front and center and you will attract motivated healthcare professionals who are dedicated to your practice. One word of caution: make sure your brand is authentic and the message you put out there is truly one that echoes your practice.
3. Diversity, Inclusion, and Equity
Just as today’s healthcare workers desire a brand that aligns, so do they appreciate a practice that’s inclusive. More and more potential new hires look at the environment of the healthcare organization and prefer to work somewhere where everyone feels safe, welcomed and respected. Many in healthcare research their opportunities with an eye on the organization’s approach to inclusivity and diversity.
Likewise, potential candidates with similar values gravitate toward practices that acknowledge inequities in healthcare. No one practice can solve the social detriments faced based on demographics however demonstrating that your mission is one that strives to have a greater impact in the community will attract the type of candidate you want on your team.
4. Reflect Candidates’ Priorities
Patient care is central to the success of your practice. Dedicated and quality nursing and support staff improve the health outcomes for patients. Answering the needs of your staff is central to recruiting and retaining the type of staff you need.
In order to retain top notch nursing and support staff its important that your practice reflects that which is important to potential new hires. In other words, consider what is most attractive to those candidates. This is a vital hiring trend for today’s healthcare professionals. Here is a list of the top priorities that matter to job seekers in nursing and healthcare.
- Safety of staff
- Flexible scheduling
- Work-life balance
- Benefits and Perks
- Supportive mental health and wellness practices
- Opportunities for growth within the organization
- Mentoring as part of onboarding
- Social Impact
These are the most attractive factors for potential candidates. Please review your practices priorities and do what you can to align with the demands of the new generation of healthcare workers. Try to make the necessary adjustments in these areas and you will certainly reap the benefits in dedicated and eager candidates.
5. Ongoing Training and Education
When a candidate expresses an interest in your organization it may be with an idea to stay in one position or they may view the job as a stepping stone to bigger things, if possible within your organization. Healthcare is ever-evolving and one of the main hiring trends we see is encouraging staff development and continued education.
Candidates interested in improving themselves and staying current with healthcare make for excellent employees. Ensure these valuable members of your healthcare practice team have the tools they need to improve skills and continue evolving along with healthcare. Offer ways for staff to improve and potentially rise within the ranks of your organization.
Hire Quality Staff, Yes, But Focus on Retention Too
While the future of healthcare depends on successful hiring trends, retaining your current employees is and should always be a priority. As you invest in making changes to your recruiting and hiring practices make sure you promote a positive work environment for your current staff. Seek to retain your top notch healthcare workers by making meaningful changes that play a role in job satisfaction. Improve benefits packages, offer training to improve skills, provide staff development and opportunities for advancement.
Pay attention to signs of burnout and take steps to address the emotional wellbeing of your current employees. Stress and exhaustion are key drivers of healthcare worker burnout. Take steps to remove any potential for stress and exhaustion oil your healthcare practice. Staff shortages shouldn’t mean current employees work longer or more shifts. The route to patient care success depends on how well you care for your staff. Let them know they are appreciated. Listen to their ideas for improving the practice, strive to understand their priorities and communicate your interest in their wellbeing.
Technology, Pandemics, and a Changing Healthcare Industry
Evolution in the healthcare industry reflects the trends of a changing world. Whether the ever-advancing technology is at the forefront or the fallout of a global pandemic drives these changes, evolution is necessary. In order for a healthcare practice to stay relevant and successful they must change with the emerging trends. The future of healthcare trends includes changes in hiring trends. It’s essential your practice stays ahead of the trends and embraces shifts toward telehealth and additional digital formats, diversity and inclusion and the vital needs of staff beyond the basics.
We Have the Answers You Need
At BOS Medical Staffing we utilize the data-driven analytics to understand the needs of the communities we serve. We acknowledge the values and priorities that are so important and necessary in retaining staff and we provide the talent you need for success in patient care. Contact BOS Medical Staffing today and let us help you see the future of healthcare and recognize the hiring trends your practice should know.