Five Practical Tips for Attracting and Onboarding Healthcare Personnel
By Guilherme Macagnan, CEO, AMX Healthcare
If we could go back in time three years and take a look around, it would be easy to point out all of the circumstances that have shifted, grown in importance, or become obsolete over the course of that time. In retrospect, we can see the changes that have taken place and how they were amplified by the onset of the pandemic. No country, city, occupation, or person has escaped this global metamorphosis.
In our, dare we say, almost post-Covid world, some of these changes are discussed every day – the stock market, the price of gasoline and home heating oil and more. Other topics have been acknowledged, covered in the mass media, and then left to it. The Great Resignation and the ongoing difficulty in hiring qualified personnel in many sectors of the economy is now old news.
When it comes to healthcare, the continuing struggle to maintain sufficient levels of staffing became difficult at the onset of the pandemic and, maybe not surprisingly, has become increasingly challenging over the years since. It’s not old news if you work in a hospital and there aren’t enough nurses to adequately cover a shift. This ongoing scenario puts patients at risk and accelerates the timeline for employee burnout.
There are several factors at when it comes to the current glut of positions in the healthcare sector. There’s the need for livable, equitable wages for healthcare staff, the population of practitioners that travel for high wages but are never in one place too long, there’s even the tsunami of need that may frighten off some. In the midst of the situation, there are strategies that can make the search easier. Here are a few practical tips and tactics to help attract healthcare staff.
Advertise for a position with intention
The more specific the job description, the better the leads will be that come from it. There is a school of thought that if a job description contains too many specific requirements and details, that the number of applicants will be reduced. That’s a good thing. Keep job descriptions tight and relevant and know that only those that can do the job will apply. This saves time sifting through resumes and interviewing people who aren’t qualified for the job in the first place.
Software can help
Software that is tailor made to assist with the onboarding process is available and waiting to be utilized. Technology can assess qualifications and streamline the screening of candidates. Some offerings utilize artificial intelligence and can sift through data to help home in on those potential employees that are in alignment with the organization’s needs and goals. Investment in the right tech can provide immense business benefit in the long run.
Make the application process easy
Healthcare-related interviews are notorious for being a cumbersome, multi-step process. Once qualified candidates are identified, ensure that the review process is streamlined and intentional – cognizant of the value of the interviewer as well as the interviewee’s time. And if the applicant does not seem like a good fit at the outset, politely end the interview.
If they’re a fit, encourage them to commit
When the interview process is going well, and the applicant is at the stage that it appears they are interested in the position, have preparations in place to secure their employment. For instance, if the interview has gone well and the candidate is qualified and has made a good impression with everyone they have met, be prepared with a job offer in hand, with the full compensation package ready. This approach ensures that the if the candidate is unsure, they will say so and if they are ready to come onboard, they don’t have to wait for a follow up phone call. Being ready with the offer accelerates the entire process of filling out the staff roster.
Recruiters know where to look
If organic outreach via typical advertising channels is not bringing in the level of leads needed for keeping up with staffing demands, hiring a service or recruiter with access to healthcare workers seeking employment is always a practical option. A recruiter speeds up the process by having the due diligence be their responsibility. A word of caution, look for a recruiter that is a particular specialist in the type or level of staffing required. Ensure that the process is transparent and that expectations on outcomes and pricing are set and met.
The healthcare system’s overall need for qualified staff means it is a competitive marketplace right now. Implementing one or more of these real-world approaches for onboarding staff can make the needed difference in the number of resumes coming in and can help make sure no stone is left unturned in the talent acquisition search.