Healthcare IT jobs are becoming more numerous, but there aren’t so many skilled candidates to go around. The clock is ticking down on meaningful use compliance, a large senior population requires increased medical care, and more Americans now have access to health insurance. For healthcare IT workers, it’s an employee’s job market. In the midst of a continuing workforce shortage, employers will need to step up their efforts at healthcare IT talent acquisition.
There are several important considerations you should incorporate during your recruiting process that will help you attract and retain top talent. Follow these essential hiring guidelines to avoid time-consuming and expensive mistakes.
- Be clear with job requirements. It is imperative to write a detailed job description to outline exactly what type of employee you need. List all the necessary skills and educational requirements, plus the soft skills needed. If a candidate needs to know certain programming languages, make sure they are on the job description. If the job calls for presentation skills, note it clearly. A thorough and specific job description goes a long way toward filtering out unsuitable candidates.
- Show them the money. Offering low salaries won’t save you any money in the long run because unimpressed candidates will likely take a better offer from another company. Remember, the competition for staff is steep, so it will only harm you to be stingy.
- Benefits are part of compensation. If your company pockets aren’t deep enough to offer top dollar, you can offset a ho-hum salary by showcasing other elements of your compensation package. The more options you can offer, the better. Some younger tech employees appreciate services like on-site child care, savings programs or more vacation time, while more seasoned staff value access to financial planning advisors, flex spending accounts or the ability to telecommute.
- Don’t go it alone. Work with a staffing agency that specializes in healthcare IT talent acquisition. Good recruiters know how to select the best candidates that have the necessary skills, talent and experience so you don’t have to wade through the resumes of unsuitable hopefuls. This saves you time and money, and when the employment market favors the candidates, you haven’t got either to waste.
- Get to know candidates. Make sure interviews delve deeply into a candidate’s experience and achievements. Some companies rely on skills testing to determine how well candidates will perform, but a skills test doesn’t tell you about how health IT employee will implement that knowledge. Ask open-ended question about a candidate’s accomplishments and challenges they surmounted. Healthcare IT acquisition isn’t about finding someone solely with a particular set of technical skills but also who can solve problems creatively, be flexible in responding to setbacks and think critically about the work to improve outcomes.
- Everyone needs to get along. Any team that can’t function smoothly and with a minimum of conflict can damage performance and create an atmosphere of discomfort and strife. When you interview, remember to think about team rapport and interpersonal relations. You might consider administering personality tests, or asking team members to meet with prospective new hires. This way the existing team can get a feel for the candidate’s personality. If you are working with a HIT staffing agency, request that your recruiter have a conversation with candidates that will reveal their quirks, motivations, passion and preferences.
- Probation is a good thing. Perhaps one of the most appealing benefits of partnering with a healthcare IT staffing agency is that you can get new talent in the door on a contract-to-hire basis. This way, you have the opportunity to evaluate a new employee’s performance for a brief period of time but aren’t locked into an employment contract if they don’t meet expectations.
Difficulties and delays can abound during the process of healthcare IT talent acquisition. By following these seven guidelines you can eliminate much of the headache. And if you’re ready to hire, we can help. We specialize in connecting employers with healthcare IT pros who have the skills, experience and personality that meet your needs. Contact us today!