As patients, we want the best healthcare we can get. And we hope that the health systems we visit have the best healthcare talent working there. But the reality is that there is a huge shortage of healthcare talent. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the Registered Nursing (RN) workforce is expected to grow to 3.4 million in 2026, an increase of 15% since 2016. And RNs are just part of the shortage. Between a tight workforce and a worldwide health crisis, the need for skilled healthcare workers continues to grow.
Healthcare is one of the fastest-growing industries nationwide, but according to Becker’s Hospital Review, healthcare doesn’t have “enough skilled people entering the workforce to fill the gap.” And that can lead to negative patient experiences, poor HCAHPS scores, and overall decrease in quality of care.
Keys for Success in Healthcare Recruiting
It’s challenging for healthcare recruiters to find a steady stream of talent and build pipelines to keep up with the demand for these highly skilled professionals. We’ve compiled a list of the keys for success we hear from the heads of talent acquisition from health systems across the country:
1. Collaborate with Corporate Marketing Early On
Recruiters and talent acquisition leaders agree that support from corporate marketing and communications departments is key. This can limit the freedom that talent acquisition leaders and recruiters have in messaging and can slow down the process.
But working with marketing means messaging will be on par with corporate standards and style, consistent with the company brand, and, hopefully, more compelling. The other factor we heard from corporate marketing teams is that talent acquisition leaders don’t often reach out to them soon enough. Give the marketing team enough time to plan and work alongside talent acquisition to share their marketing expertise to support hiring efforts.
2. Match Candidates with the Best-Fitting Jobs
We’ve had the fortune of working with some of the best healthcare recruiting teams in the country. The most successful recruiters think strategically and recruit candidates not just for the current open req, but also consider what other roles may be open today or in the future.
Recruiters should act in a consultative manner with candidates. The candidate may not have visibility into other open roles (although an AI-Driven recruitment marketing solution like Jobvite has the system that can do much of the work for you), but the recruiter should have that visibility. Successful recruiters can act as a talent advisor or consultative role when good healthcare talent is found to find the right role for great candidates.
3. Create Job Descriptions that Sell
Job descriptions should sell. They should tell a story. Make sure they aren’t a long list of accountabilities and desired skills. Job descriptions are part of the key content that will help attract and engage candidates to apply. When healthcare candidates are attracted to a great career site and compelling content, but then are faced with a dull, poorly written job description, their candidate experience goes south.
Using good storytelling skills, create a compelling framework and tone in job descriptions to attract the healthcare talent to deliver the patient care your health system strives for.
4. Use the Talent Network
One of the primary conversion goals should be to get candidates to opt-in to your talent networks. Candidates may not be ready to apply today, but they may be attracted to your organization and will be ready to apply in the future. Don’t forget the strategic importance of building talent pipelines with passive healthcare candidates.
Ensure it’s easy to join the talent network directly from the career site with a clear CTA (call to action). Then, utilize the CRM to segment and engage candidates with drip campaigns.
5. Don’t Forget Those Previously Acquired Candidates
Shockingly, 45% of candidates were paid for twice according to some talent acquisition leaders. That is wasted time and money. Invest in your own talent database, or CRM, so you can build talent pipelines of patient–centric, highly skilled healthcare professionals. Build drip campaigns with emails and text messages to nurture these candidates.
6. Look Internally
Internal healthcare workers may be looking for new growth opportunities, the opportunity to move elsewhere, or simply a change. Consider internal employees as you look to fill new roles and give them visibility into new roles. Empowering them to look for and find new opportunities helps to retain the knowledge and experience and shows all employees there is a career path within your health system. Internal candidates will also be far less costly to attract, engage, and convert.
7. Nurture Silver Medalists
Silver medalists are typically good, strong candidates. Recruiters have already invested in these candidates, and they are engaged and attracted to your health system. Build engagement campaigns in the CRM to identify and nurture these candidates. Real ROI emerges when previous silver medalists are engaged and nurtured and then considered for other roles that open.
Getting the most from your recruiting efforts is critical in such a competitive healthcare hiring marketing. Numerous organizations, like Community Health Network, are attracting and engaging healthcare talent to deliver patient-centric care with the help of Jobvite.
Always Be Recruiting
Think strategically, not just about the current open req, but how to build talent pipelines of healthcare talent so that when new roles open up you’ve established relationships with candidates and are ready to take the next step with the best ones.