4 Challenges Unique to Healthcare Hiring

Patients across the United States put their lives in the hands of healthcare professionals every single day. Because of this reality, those that recruit healthcare professionals have a profound responsibility when delivering candidates to client organizations looking to hire. Outside of medical demands, technological demands are also having an impact when it comes to healthcare hiring. After the Great Recession, the industry is beginning to move towards a candidate-centric economy and the industry’s employment rate is projected to grow by up to 19% until 2024, according to the US Bureau of Labor Statistics.
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As a firm that specializes exclusively in Healthcare Recruiting, we’ve seen first-hand how grueling the task can be. When it comes to recruiting top professionals, every industry has it’s nuances and challenges. In Healthcare, those challenges tend to be magnified for a variety of reasons. Here are some of the top recruiting challenges that are unique to the Healthcare hiring: Learn more about the cost of a bad hire.

The Challenge:

One of the major challenges to healthcare recruiting is that the need for new professionals is oftentimes urgent. Without the right talent in place, the quality of care can be compromised significantly, reflecting poorly on the institution. The screening process can be complicated and slow, as healthcare candidates must pass multiple tests required by the profession and state. The tests can involve tedious and lengthy processes, which can cause applicants to become frustrated and, in some cases, abandon the process all together if it becomes too complex.   

The Solution:

Healthcare companies need to provide candidates with a refined and manageable screening process in order to decrease applicant drop-off. There are a few solutions to this, but overall, you should find a way to provide more control and visibility into the screening process to make it easier to follow your company’s hiring procedures. Strive to build a system that allows applicants to complete the process electronically. This includes providing ways for candidates to check their status, complete tests and view any pending activities awaiting resolution.

The Challenge:

In an ideal world, you’d be able to offer superior salaries to every candidate that walks through the door, but that’s not always possible. The healthcare industry is dynamic and competitive and, given this reality, the employer who offers the most cash often garners the best talent.   

The Solution:

There are other ways that you can remain competitive without offering more money. Candidates decide who they want to work for based on a variety of factors, not just compensation.
If your organization finds itself in a place where increasing an offer is out of the question, consider offering additional benefits that the candidate might find attractive. You can offer additional benefits such as growth opportunities, flexible work schedule and bonus opportunities.
As I mentioned in the introduction, hiring the wrong person in healthcare can have a bigger impact on the quality of services compared to other industries. When you’re dealing with human lives on a daily basis, securing top talent is essential. In another industry, a poor hire may result in poor quality of work and a weakened competitive advantage or questionable product. However, in hospitals and healthcare, the stakes are higher since a bad hire can direct harm to the patient or reduce the overall quality of care.

Suggested Reading: The cost of a bad hire in the healthcare industry.

The Challenge:

In healthcare, many of the candidates are highly trained and, thus, possess a higher level of autonomy compared to employees in other industries. This gives them the ability to be more selective when they receive multiple offers from different organizations. The best healthcare talent tends to be highly selective when it comes to choosing and employer. This makes it challenging for healthcare organizations to compete for top talent for hard-to-fill positions.  

The Solution:

There are a few ways that you can go about solving this challenge. First, we recommend looking outside your company to recruit for hard-to-fill positions, but also consider promoting employees from within. Additionally, be sure to take advantage of referral opportunities, as your talented employees most likely surround themselves with other talented candidates. Even if a highly trained candidate turns down your offer it’s a best practice to maintain your relationship with them, as there may be some referrals that you can get from them.


Curing Healthcare Recruitment Challenges

The bottom line is that your candidates will likely have multiple options when looking for a new position. They may even be acutely aware that the market demand outstrips supply. The reality is that candidates need recruiters less than recruiters need them. Even if you manage to get that sought after candidate on the phone, that’s only half the battle. Here’s why.

It’s unrealistic to assume that they won’t find countless other opportunities, as healthcare candidates are one of the most valuable commodities in healthcare today. As you search for talent, it’s critical that you keep the attention and focus of your candidates. However, this takes a lot of skill and is one reason why so many organizations reach out to recruiting firms like us. A recruiting firm can assist you in telling a compelling story about any job opening to compel candidates to take action. The key isn’t necessarily sourcing or engagement, it’s more about having a great narrative that is going to speak to healthcare professionals aspirations and inspire them, according to Recruiting Daily.

Suggested Reading: Are you making one of the top 3 healthcare recruiting mistakes?

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