The healthcare sector is one of the most fast-paced industries out there and it is an important resource when it comes to the maintenance of good health. The World Health Organization (WHO) declared 2006 to 2015 as "The decade of the human resources for health" and since then, the need for advancements has only increased in the healthcare sector worldwide.
The healthcare workers spend their primary time in taking care of the vulnerable. They're in the frontline and carry the grand responsibility of 'life' on their shoulders. So, what can be done to empower and uplift them, and in return, revamp the hospital industry?
Before we explore that, let's face some hard facts. The employee turnover rate in hospitals has been going up greatly, which means, due to the lack of workforce management in this industry, unhappy healthcare workers have been switching or leaving their jobs.
It has been predicted by The Association of American Medical Colleges (AAMC) that in the United States alone, the physician shortage will reach up to 120,000 doctors by the end of 2030.
So, now, it's more important than ever to learn how to run things better. Here are four ways in which the workforce management in hospitals can be raised to be stronger:-
1) Old Vs Modern.
The first step is to attract high-quality candidates to fill open positions. Frequently, the communication gap becomes a major problem in the recruitment process. This gap needs to be bridged with the establishment or usage of recruiting tools through third-party systems. Both the recruiters and the workers should be able to reach each other and know their professional status easily.
To track the availability of doctors or nurses through texting, emails or phone calls can be overwhelming, especially when you need to manage a large number of workers. The old methods are starting to become obsolete, as they fail to cope with the changing times.
So, hospitals need to explore new ways of management. One that requires minimal effort and has high efficiency. Using the help of external software to manage shifts, contracts, and all the other fuss can make the process of recruitment much easier, faster, and coherent. And let's not forget, it will save tons of time! Otherwise, a lot of vacancies in hospitals usually take months to be occupied.
2) The Matter of Availability.
As the entire health care sector frequently faces a shortage in the workforce, hospitals need recurring staff, who are well acquainted with their roles and responsibilities.
To run things smoothly - along with the internal workforce, external temp force also has to be embraced. They add to the existing manpower and help to build a thriving workforce.
Ideally, a system should be devised, that can track the availability and work-status of the temp agents and health-care staff who have already worked for the hospital before.
If hospitals have permanently available recruited workforce, they can be self-sufficient and also easily fetch specialists who are needed for specific jobs. Patients also love to see familiar faces, instead of new ones every other day. For the comfort of both the healthcare organizations and also the workforce, the idea of a ‘recurring gig’ has to be uplifted.
The HR department will not lose precious hours trying to find somebody to recruit and train, as having a system will create a pool of employees, who can be contacted for filling the vacant positions.
3) The Art of Scheduling.
If you're a fan of Grey's Anatomy, you'd know what a chaotic atmosphere dominates hospitals. The reality is even more challenging than we see in movies and television shows. Nurses and doctors constantly run around caring for different patients. Some even stay overtime. In these instances, having a sturdy employee management system can come in handy!
Whether an organization is small or big, it requires workable schedules. But this isn't easy to do. The HR team must learn how to maintain paid time offs, absent employees, and personal schedules, while at the same time, staffing each section properly according to its everyday needs.
To take care of the little details, getting a system that can get a holistic view of the entire workforce should be given attention. By not having such a system, existing skill-sets of the employees are not utilized to their optimal level and along with that, assigning them according to their eligibility and interest is quite a task. Think of it as a dashboard where department heads and nursing leaders can access information, modify and create schedules for the employees in a short amount of time.
4) Keeping Employees Happy.
We live in a generation which is all about 'give & take'. If the health workers are devoting their time and hard work, each day and night - shouldn't they be rewarded for it? Many hospitals across the world have started seeing the significance of employee recognition. From awards and prizes to incentives, little things can make a huge difference in the mood and behavior of the staff.
The psychological well-being of the patients depends on the psychological well-being of the doctors and nurses too. Fatigued, disappointed, and overworked, they would require something 'extra' to keep themselves motivated. Hospitals should understand the desperate need to retain high - quality staff, as high turnover rates can lead to additional costs and low-quality services.
The good news
But the good news is that voluntary healthcare employee turnover can be curbed through these encouraging steps, which will further strengthen the core and the high-value care factor of hospitals.
Want to refurbish your management system but don’t know where to start? Check out Stafflist, to begin managing your workforce better.