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  • Keaton Stockton

COVID-19’s Effect on the Healthcare Industry


As COVID-19 spread throughout the United States, the rise in hospitalizations put enormous pressure on the healthcare industry to mobilize their current employees and fill open positions as soon as possible. There has been an increase in healthcare job postings by 35% since January.

Unlike other industries, the healthcare industry is not facing furloughs or layoffs, but their workforce is desperately trying to hire new staff members across all categories, due to their apparent need to meet logistical demands. It’s still important for healthcare leaders to be aware of the factors that will impact hiring plans since hiring is challenging to begin with, and is only exacerbated by COVID-19 safety precautions.

Here are some challenges that the healthcare industry will face when hiring:

Hire now, Work now

The more COVID-19 cases we see, the need for hiring high quality workers increases. Screening is a critical component of the healthcare hiring process. It’s important to have a screening process in place that is efficient without a drop in quality. Recruiting firms are the best way to screen based off of the job description; they will only bring candidates that fulfill your requirements while doing a full background check on them as well. Even during a crisis, it's important to uphold high hiring expectations so you know you are doing everything you can to reduce the risk for patient health and safety.

Clinical and Non-Clinical Open Positions

COVID-19 has accelerated the need for more doctors, nurses, and clinical support staff in all positions that provide direct patient care. However, there are also other, less visible, positions that need to be filled as well, such as: patient transporters, intensive care staff, respiratory specialists, support employees, janitors, and kitchen staff. All of these positions are critical to a functioning healthcare facility and optimal care for patients and the public.

There is a huge increase in recruitment activity and that can put a strain on the professionals that can be helping to fight this disease in a different way. External recruiters can take the stress out of the hiring process and even help with the onboarding processes as well. Healthcare organizations are struggling to keep up with the pace of hiring demand, so when you hire a recruiter, there will already be hand picked quality candidates to choose from.

Temporary and Contract Staffing

There is a need to permanently expand in some aspects of the healthcare industry but there is also demand for short-term positions based on the needs for the COVID-19 climate. With this immediate demand, candidates shouldn’t be viewed any differently than a permanent hire. Hiring for a temporary position poorly can have just as much of a bad effect on your bottom line as a bad permanent hire would. Screening, compensation, and benefits are still important when hiring on a contractual basis. Temporarily expanding doesn’t have to result in increased hiring risk; you can rely on a third-party staffing agency to screen them and make sure they meet all of your requirements. Having this piece of mind knowing that you will have high quality candidates whether it is for permanent, temporary, or contract, they will all be high performing contributors to your team.

Right now we are even more dependent on the healthcare industry, so being aware of these challenges reduces hiring risk because they require quick, yet thoughtful action. We want you to be successful, and not only have quality hires, but we want you to be well-equipped to weather this storm as well.

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