The healthcare industry literally involves life or death situations, and the increasing shortage of skilled healthcare workers can make an administrator’s job a nightmare. Hiring, training and developing a core staff dedicated to keeping your organization running smoothly is complicated; this is especially true when you consider that demand is high, supply is lower and turnover is common.Employee retention is of unique significance in today’s healthcare environment. Baby Boomers are aging, rates of chronic diseases are increasing, and budgetary concerns have cut spending. It’s becoming more difficult to attract the right talent and keep staff turnover low.
To face the challenge of employee exodus, many healthcare organization executives are allocating resources to boost salaries, increase bonuses and offer more benefits. However, there are other reasons for healthcare facility turnover, so it’s necessary to appreciate and respond to factors that are sending your workforce to other organizations.
Low Wage Levels
Obviously, your employees will always be attracted to a career change that offers more money than you’re paying. Still, you always have to keep an eye on your bottom line and future forecasting. There are ways besides wage increases to tackle the main reasons for healthcare facility turnover.
What to do: Create an environment of growth
When it comes to healthcare employee retention, signs point to the issue being more about creating the right work environment than dollars and cents. When you maintain an atmosphere that encourages growth, they’re more inclined to stick around. Offer a well-defined, merit-based career path that includes planning, training and educational incentives to retain your workforce. When they see a lack of opportunities to advance within your organization, they’re likely to start looking elsewhere.
Less-than-attractive perks is another one of the reasons for healthcare facility turnover. The best approach is not to simply increase benefits and hope for the best, as your budget won’t always allow for it.
What to do: Offer flexible options
Your healthcare organization might consider implementing a flexible benefits plan that enables more employees to choose the perks that suit them. Giving your staff the sense of control over their employment conditions demonstrates your commitment to keeping them satisfied.
Poor Working Conditions
Even the most successful and reputable healthcare facilities can be accused of a poor work environment, and making strides in this area does more than boost your employee retention rate.
What to do: Implement best practices
The best work conditions involve open lines of communication, so make sure you’re available and responsive to employee concerns. Among the main reasons for healthcare facility turnover is that workers don’t feel like they’re being heard, so implement best practices that define a path to address problems before they drive staff away.
Failure to Recognize a Job Well Done
Many times, an employee will leave simply because they didn’t receive proper accolades for above average achievements over time. This phenomenon is relatively easy to solve without investing significant cost.
What to do: Provide proper positive reinforcement
Whether you implement an employee bonus program or simply recognize a staff member for performance, it’s important to provide praise as it’s earned.
Deficient Performance Management Protocols
The performance process doesn’t have to be a dreaded encounter by administrators and employees alike, so establish practices to get the most out of these meetings.
What to do: Define your performance review process
It’s important to be specific when describing areas of success, as well as where the staff member can improve. Identify particular skills where he or she shines and offer resources to help them tackle weaknesses.
About Michael Wilson
Michael Wilson is AFFLINK'S Vice President of Marketing and Communications. He has been with the organization since 2005 and provides strategic leadership for the entire supply chain team. In his free time, Michael enjoys working with the Wounded Warrior Project, fishing, and improving his cooking skills.