The Great Healthcare Resignation: Inclusivity and Diversity Major Assets for Staff Retention
A report from data intelligence company Morning Consult, “Voices From the Frontlines of Healthcare: Part II”, showed that 79% of healthcare workers surveyed said the worker shortage negatively impacted them. When asked how the reasons are familiar; EDs overcapacity, working more hours to cover for people that have quit, uncompetitive pay, and burnout from overwhelming workloads.
79% of healthcare workers surveyed said the worker shortage negatively impacted them.
Healthcare is not immune to the effects of the “Great Resignation.” One way to attract and keep talent is through increasing diversity and inclusion in your organization.
Organizations Should be More Intentional in Cultivating BIPOC Leaders
Natalie Jones, System Executive Director of Workforce Development for Wellstar Health System, says that organizations need to be more intentional in identifying BIPOC talent, particularly leadership and executive roles. This includes having a solid succession plan where top talent is identified, and leaders are mentoring those individuals to progress to the next level of their careers. Another area with gaps is nurturing middle management for executive leadership.
At the same time, individuals must seriously consider opportunities that might take them out of their comfort zone. About ten years into her nursing career, Jones was in middle management when human resources at a previous organization approached her about being the System Leader of Recruitment and Retention and ‘Nursing Chief Retention Officer.’ The idea of shifting to a non-clinical job was something that Jones had never envisioned. It seemed like a step off course at best but said she was prepared for a new challenge outside of nursing.
“I thought my next role would be a Director of Nursing. Why would I want to be a recruiter?” Jones says. “But the VP of Human Resources saw that I had a lot of transferrable skills that would be a good fit for managing nursing recruitment. To advance your career, take a chance on yourself and listen to others. Many times, someone sees something in you that will align your talent and strength that you may not see in yourself.”
“Many times, someone sees something in you that will align your talent and strength that you may not see in yourself.”
The Intersection of BIPOC and Millennial Recruitment
De Andre Delsol, Sterile Processing Director and Business Leadership Consultant, says that the challenge with recruiting BIPOC talent is not that they are hard to find; they are active job seekers. The challenge is the organizational leader’s unwillingness to change their exclusive cultures and hold individuals with hiring power accountable for their debilitating biases.
“As more BIPOC are hired in leadership positions, company cultures should shift to allow them to bring their authentic professional selves to an organization.”
“As more BIPOC are hired in leadership positions, company cultures should shift to allow them to bring their authentic professional selves to an organization. This paradigm shift in company culture should naturally replace the former culture,” Delsol says. “We’re bringing our unique talents to assist in accomplishing the mission, vision, and goals of the organization; however, leaders have to be willing to evolve from a group-think mindset in order to appreciate our added value.”
Delsol says that millennials are much quicker to leave a job for better opportunities than previous generations. He highlights three things driving this trend: compensation (including benefits), culture, and work-life balance. The pandemic has also created a boom in the travel nursing market, adding another complication to the recruitment and retention of full-time employees.
Delsol has consulted and managed departments in small cities like El Paso, TX, and larger cities like Chicago, IL.
“If recruiters are attempting to recruit candidates to a small city, they need to increase the compensation because the location’s livability score may not draw in the most desired talent. However, when they recruit talent for a major city, they may focus more energy on culture and work-life balance. Because a candidate can apply to a job down the street for good compensation and a great job title, the focus on culture and work-life balance may be the competitive advantage an organization needs to recruit and maintain high performing candidates.”
Also, gone are the days of living to work. Many employees, not just millennials, now realize the difference between workaholism and work ethic. Delsol says healthcare leaders can produce excellent outcomes for patients, lower costs, and create a welcoming environment for staff without constant high levels of stress.
“I am an advocate for shared leadership and developing high-performing teams,” Delsol says. “You have to treat people like human beings. The newer generations don’t want to stay at work for hours and hours and not have time for their family or themselves. Work/life balance is essential for personal health and professional longevity.”
“I am an advocate for shared leadership and developing high-performing teams,” Delsol says. “You have to treat people like human beings.”
Delsol says a welcoming atmosphere should also be inclusive of all ages, not just the new generation. There should be balance based on individuals’ needs and the organization’s expectations.
“Have you created training for your older employees who may not be as strong on the computer? Are you making sure they feel supported? Have you created an atmosphere for tech-savvy Gen Zs who may not want to go through long, laborious training when they are used to getting information quickly? Use everyone’s strengths. No one wants to feel like they are on an assembly line. They want to be a part of an inclusive community,” Delsol says.