Where Will Human Resources in Healthcare Be a Year from Now?

The healthcare industry faces the unique challenges of maintaining the well-being of patients. This added pressure can affect people across all levels of work from the HR professionals responsible for hiring the staff to the admins who support them and the doctors, nurses and other healthcare professionals on the front lines.

A major contributor that’s changing how human resources departments operate in the healthcare industry is automation. Automation’s growing involvement in HR management is affecting every element of HR from recruitment to benefits and payroll to employee advancement. As a result, automation will greatly impact where human resources in healthcare will be one year from now.

Competitive Hiring

According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, demand for nurses will continue to rise to fill new positions and provide replacements for nurses going into retirement. They estimate there will be openings for 203,700 new RNs every year well into 2026.

Employers will be fighting to recruit and retain nurses from the limited pool coming out of the country’s nursing programs. Being able to attract young nurses becomes more difficult as the millennial workforce has different priorities when looking for jobs including the opportunity for advancement and superior benefits.

HR departments will require new ways to attract more staff introducing competitive benefit programs, career tracking and training opportunities to enhance advancement opportunities.

Automated applicant tracking and onboarding raise your organization’s profile in the eyes of younger hires that expect certain aspects of hiring to be simplified. It also makes the hiring process easier when turnover is an issue. HR professionals will have easy access to resumes to reduce the need for running ads.

Focus on Retention

Even when HR departments are successful in their recruitment tactics, turnover continues to place increased demand on HR professionals. Finding new positions is easy in an industry where there is a shortage of trained staff. Your team of healthcare professionals will have ample opportunity to make a move if they are not happy in their positions. In fact, according to the 2019 National Health Care Retention & RN Staffing Report hospitals have turned over 87.8% of its entire workforce since 2014.

In order to overcome turnover challenges, HR departments will have to focus on improving the things that attract new hires, but ensure they are also designed to retain them. This goes deeper into the dynamics between management and workers. The need for strong leadership to support and mentor staff will be very important in the years to come. Providing managers, the tools required for mentoring such as performance reviews will offer employees incentive to remain onboard with clear goals and an action plan for moving them forward. It will also help develop stronger manager/staff bonds to create more loyalty.

Performance review software allows employees to follow their progress towards promotions. It also provides HR departments with clarified training and professional development requirements both for individuals and the organization.  

Avoiding Employee Burnout

Compounding the difficulties of hiring and retention is the threat of employee burnout. This is of course enhanced by staffing shortages, which puts a strain on limited resources. This affects turnover as well. In healthcare people are hard on themselves as they know their performance has great impact on the health and well being of their patients. If they don’t feel they can perform well, it increases stress and can lead to burnout.

Burnout rates for nurses are reaching 70 percent, with doctors sitting at 51 percent. While safe staffing legislation is in the works to reach safer nurse to patient ratios, the staff is still faced with keeping up with demand until such rules are in place.

HR departments will need to find ways to streamline more processes to reduce some of the pressure on staff. This can include improved time and attendance automation, easier ways to request time off, and improved accuracy in payroll to avoid frustration.

Workforce Planning

Workforce planning allows HR healthcare departments to remain on top of all aspects of staffing including hiring, scheduling, turnover and retirement. With effective workforce planning HR departments will be able to balance recruitment and staff shortages using the right data, metrics, and key performance indicators.

They will identify risks and find opportunities for improvement before large-scale issues negatively impact the organization. With improved planning, it becomes easier to recruit new talent and retain top performers in key positions.

Workforce planning software provides a system that tracks employees, anticipates retirements, manages internal promotions and transfers ongoing files to assist in the recruitment process.

To ensure your human resources healthcare team is up to the challenges to come, adopting HR software will help you meet the needs of tomorrow’s healthcare professionals.

About The Author

Kayla is the Marketing Manager at Paypro Corporation overseeing all inbound and outbound marketing and sales efforts. She has 7+ years of experience working within the B2B and SaaS based solutions space and thrives on creating messaging and campaigns that introduce products and services to those who need them most.

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