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How Healthcare Marketers Can Successfully Impact Recruitment Efforts

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At Ten Adams, we work exclusively with hospitals and health systems. That focus allows us to identify and address emerging challenges within the industry. A recurrent theme from our clients across the country is difficulty finding, attracting, and successfully hiring employees for positions across the organization.

Ten Adams president Jon Headlee shares his observations on the topic and offers marketers tips to successfully impact recruitment efforts.   

How are staffing shortages impacting your hospital and health system clients?  

 Our health system clients cannot recruit and hire enough employees to meet the demand for care and they can no longer afford travel or contract workers. In some instances, staffing shortages led to clinic closures, reduced or restricted specialty services, and shutting down service lines.  

Recruitment has always been a priority for hospitals, why does it feel so urgent right now? 

Recruitment has been an important topic for a long time, but the financial pain of prolonged employee shortages and the use of contract/travel staff really brought it to the forefront. The stop-gap methods used during the pandemic weren’t meant to last forever. They aren’t a sustainable financial model and organizations are really feeling that in the budget.  

How can the marketing and communication team help address this situation? 

In my opinion, there are three primary actions the team can take to increase the odds of successful employee recruitment – create or improve the relationship with Human Resources, focus on brand attributes, and rethink your approach.  

Align with Human Resources

This group is exhausted but forging ahead with recruitment efforts. Your team can help them by providing and aligning talking points about the organization, creating templates for emails and job postings, and pooling resources to make your messages go further and have a greater impact. Don’t underestimate the power of collaborating with the recruitment team to devise a strategy and set shared goals.  

Leverage Your Brand Attributes
In years past, hospitals didn’t have to spend as much time and money convincing people to work for them. Steady employment, decent pay, and benefits were enough of a draw. Today’s workforce has different priorities and places a lot of weight on authenticity. If you’ve done the hard work of branding your organization, then you have the tools necessary to attract this new kind of employee, i.e., mission statement, brand attributes, differentiators, and data. Use that information to create a compelling recruitment “sales hook” for your hospital that highlights what makes you special. If you don’t have a compelling story as to why your organization should be considered – help create it!  

Rethink Your Approach
The marketing team can help HR reach audiences that aren’t enrolled at the local nursing school or a fan of your Facebook page. It’s critical that they consider new avenues and approaches to recruitment because they need to fill more than clinical positions. Share your industry knowledge with the recruitment team and show them how to target potential employees outside of healthcare. Create a new strategy for attracting people to nutrition services, environmental services, maintenance, finance, and support positions. And don’t forget to tell them how to measure results! 

How is Ten Adams approaching the recruitment challenges felt by so many health systems? 

We recommend treating recruitment with the same (or greater) emphasis as a service line campaign. Use brand attributes and differentiators to craft a strategy. Assign time and resources for executing that strategy. By emphasizing and operationalizing your core values, you attract the people most likely to be a good fit for your organization. How can you convince others to buy in to your work culture and choose to be part of your hospital family if you don’t articulate who you are and what you stand for? Successful recruitment strategies for today’s market are equal parts information and emotion.  

Any closing thoughts on the topic of recruitment? 

Don’t wait! This is a competition for human capital and the stakes have never been higher. Hospitals that take action and put forth a compelling and distinctive value proposition will attract more qualified candidates to their open positions.  

Healthcare branding is our specialty. If your team needs help developing a compelling employer brand to attract and recruit the right employees, connect with our experts

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