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Healthcare & Hospital Employee Retention

Employee Retention in the Healthcare

Persistent Healthcare Turnover Projected for next 5 years

The healthcare industry is ready to check the pulse of its workforce. The constantly changing industry is now more complicated from the increasing turnover rate. Leading health systems are benefiting greatly from innovative and comprehensive hospital employee retention strategies.

WARNING: These turnover statistics could make you sick. Up to half of healthcare workers will quit their job next year. As opportunities grow domestically and abroad, the quality of talent available to healthcare organizations continues to shrink, creating urgency to retain top talent. Among the key employee issues healthcare faces is employee burnout. While this is not a new challenge, it is getting worse, particularly for nurses. Burnout rates among 27 physician specialties exceeds 40%, while emergency medicine approaches 60%. High turnover and burnout have a compound effect, and a hidden cost beyond the employee experience. From shortages, Physical Therapist and Occupational Therapist staff are burdened with extra shifts. They are also training a revolving door of new employees, which can lead to decreased quality of care or potentially the perception of care provided to patients.

  • The turnover rate increased from 18.4% in 2013 to 22.7% in 2017
  • U.S. healthcare unemployment rate hit 2.5% in 2017
  • Costs for replacing a Registered Nurse (RN) ranges from $97,216 to $104,440!
  • 63% of all nurses reported burnout in 2017


How to increase employee retention in healthcare

According the HealthStream’s benchmark data, the day shift has much higher job satisfaction than every other shift (night shifts, evening shifts, rotating shifts, etc.). Because patients require round the clock care, most facilities ensure all shifts are engaged and focused on their work. But something is missing. This means increasing retention in healthcare can start by determining how wide the gap is between Day and Non-Day shift. Rather than apply blanket policies/programs, one tactic to save time and funds is to target retention strategies specifically toward applicable shift employees. Because of the 24/7 care required for patients, healthcare workers often experience grueling schedules. A common strategy to alleviate stress among healthcare professionals is to offer opportunities for flexible work schedules.

Millennial retention in healthcare

Millennial retention in healthcare is increasingly at the forefront of conversation among People and Culture leaders. The millennial generation will account for the half of the workforce by 2020 and 75% by 2030. The question then remains: how do we motivate and retain millennials? One answer indicates to focus on technology. Millennials are used to integrated and interconnected technology. From CNA’s to Nurse Practitioners to Radiology Technician’s, they expect medicine and well-being supported by mobile health. Additionally, millennials want develop their skillsets and if they don’t see those opportunities they are likely to leave. Ironically, legacy technologies are MORE frustrating to millennials than NEW technology is to previous generations. Keep up the tech, and keep your top millennial talent.

Recruitment and retention strategies in healthcare

To find a qualified healthcare candidates is now a time consuming (and likely frustrating) process. So that hiring managers can focus more on the personal interactions with the candidates, ensure that automation exists in the hiring process with applicant tracking systems. Leverage Candidate Surveys that provide valid and predictive information about the candidate experience. Couple Candidate Survey results with standardized interview guides and behavioral assessments enable hiring managers to have meaningful conversations and determine the most accurate talent acquisition process. Healthcare recruiters have new tools to innovate recruitment and retention in order to filter out under-performers and reduce high-performer turnover.

How Can Retensa Increases Healthcare and Hospital Staff Retention:

  1. Stay Interviews are check-ups for your workforce. They are at the foundation of gathering actionable intelligence and inform where further investigation and action needs to occur within your organization. Using a third party like Retensa to conduct stay interviews creates the safety net people need to avoid burning bridges and be honest about what they want and why they would leave. With turnover rate increasing in healthcare, employers cannot expect to pinpoint the root causes without conducting “check-ups.” Identify the primary drivers of turnover at your healthcare organization and create strategies to increase retention today.
  2. Retention Diagnostic Patients are not expected to invest thousands of dollars in treatment without knowing what is being treated and if it is going to work. At Retensa, we operate the same way. Through a 360 degree view of the employee’s experience, a Retention Diagnostic identifies exactly where your facilities excel with employee retention strategies in healthcare (to replicate across the organization), and the prognosis of where to focus to create the biggest impact. There are real inherent challenges, like long shifts, physical requirements, and high stress (particularly among nurses). So Retensa focuses on the issues you can control. To reduce turnover long-term, we need to monitor the health of our workforce and ailments like of low morale, high absenteeism, or disengagement. With each issue, you need clear and proven treatment. To retain talent with Retensa, that’s what you receive; specific prioritized action items with the confidence of a data-driven solution.
  3. Retention Skills Training provides hospital administrators, shift supervisors, and managers with the requisite tools and knowledge to lead and engage their teams. Managing a team of residents or nurses requires skills beyond the training received in medical/nursing school. In 4 sessions, they have the tools they need to be a great manager who retains and engages, and brings out the best in their team. Retensa provides data-driven training based on customized insights from what your doctors, nurses, and medical professionals say they want and need from leadership. Don’t lose any more skilled and valuable resources to staff turnover. Invest in real-world training that is customized to the needs of hospitals and healthcare organizations.

Healthcare employee demand will remain high for at least 10 years. Retention will not get easier by itself. But there are real tactics that work. It succeeds when we get proactive to reduce turnover and increase connection to the firm and future. Call Retensa now at (212) 545-1280 or email a retention expert here.