No healthcare organization was immune from the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic and the subsequent “Great Resignation” of staff needed to meet their communities’ ever-changing needs.
Several major talent trends have been gaining momentum in recent years and were exacerbated by the pandemic, including clinician burnout, reliance on premium contingent labor, supplemented recruitment solutions and an emphasis on end-to-end candidate engagement.
Now that the post-pandemic period has arrived, it’s time to address the effects on staffing and build a workforce geared toward increasing flexibility and driving operational savings. Healthcare systems can better serve their communities today and in the future by developing a successful recruitment strategy now.
Recruitment strategies must be broad in scope and flexible in approach. Talent acquisition must be conducted holistically, in concert with the entire organization’s needs, and leverage partners who are more than just traditional vendors.
Today's workforce challenges require flexible solutions
The landscape of healthcare delivery was transformed in many ways by the rapid onset of the pandemic. The crisis highlighted two key workforce priorities:
- Ensuring that the right people are in place
- Building sufficient institutional flexibility to address emerging challenges
The need for flexibility will persist and become vital to any workforce strategy. Adaptations in policies and procedures are needed to meet long-term trends, such as telehealth, as organizations redefine relationships with their patients, employees, communities and other stakeholders.
For this reason alone, recruitment process outsourcing (RPO) is a proven, cost-effective and efficient solution for health systems. RPO is an integrated talent model approach in which an external service provider partners with an organization’s recruiting/talent acquisition and human resources teams to hire candidates quickly and efficiently while lowering costs and ensuring a good culture fit.
A compelling RPO partner will emphasize workforce agility amid evolving job responsibilities and scheduling demands. A total workforce solution can foster the optimal balance between the flexibility of contingent professionals and the stability of best-fit permanent hires.
RPO teams should fully integrate with the internal talent acquisition team, attending all meetings and utilizing the same technology stack. From internal messaging tools, email addresses, and local phone numbers to the video conferencing platform, there is no distinction between the RPO and internal client teams to the healthcare professionals being recruited.
RPO solutions should also provide weekly reports detailing all activity and status updates of open positions, acceptances, starts, and future starts by specialty and location. Reports should show the success of channels being utilized to attract healthcare professionals.
Cost-savings recruitment strategies that keep the bottom line in mind
With healthcare organizations confronting significant impairment to revenue and cash flow, maintaining your workforce can only be sustainable if it is effective. A performance-based model for RPO is multidimensional and scalable, and brings innovation to traditional external recruitment support, offering ample opportunity to favorably impact an organization’s bottom line. Using RPO can lower hiring costs by providing the most favorable balance of permanent, flexible, and temporary talent, solidifying an organization’s staffing plan.
RPO solutions can reduce costs in the following areas:
- Candidate prescreening, assessment, and engagement
- End-to-end requisition process efficiency and optimization
- Days-to-fill reductions, minimizing the lost productivity of extended vacancies
- Identification of strategies to reduce actual cost per hire
- Enterprise-level analysis of staffing needs and pain points
- Quickly opens beds that support your community and reduces vacancy rates
- Reduces dependency on premium labor and overtime
Proven track record of speed, agility and quality service
Hospitals and health systems need digital transformation to achieve the competitive edge required to succeed in a shifting healthcare landscape. A forward-thinking RPO partner looks beyond today’s most pressing questions toward developing sustainable long-run innovation. That involves providing or recommending technologies to drive change throughout the talent acquisition process.
Any successful RPO program will rely on a strategic partnership between the two organizations and the ability to effectively manage change even before the implementation beings. In addition, regular and open communication will help to assess and remove any roadblocks and can lead to additional refinements of the program.
Needs will ebb and flow, which requires an RPO program to flex up and down. An integrated RPO solution provides scalability, flexibility, and recruitment consistency while reducing fixed and variable labor costs.
As health systems navigate talent management, HR leadership has a timely opportunity to reorient systems and processes to be increasingly scalable, agile, and budget-conscious. An RPO solution meets today’s challenges and offers multiple pathways to long-term talent management improvement.