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Healthcare employment is seeing a slow but steady resurgence this spring. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) March report, an estimated 36,400 new employees have been added to healthcare organization payrolls in the past month. Nursing care facilities have also seen a slight increase in employment (1.7%). 

While the healthcare industry still has over half a million pre-pandemic jobs to regain, there is definite evidence of a country in recovery, according to BLS Commissioner, William Beach. 

“Nonfarm payroll employment rose by 916,000 in March, and the unemployment rate edged down to 6.0 percent,” Beach stated in a recent news release. “These improvements in the labor market reflect the continued resumption of economic activity that had been curtailed due to the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic.”

Along with the employment rate nearing pre-pandemic levels, the BLS reported that around 350,000 people have returned to the workforce in the past month.

What Healthcare Organizations Should Prioritize in the Coming Months

As the healthcare industry works its way back to full strength and employment picks up speed, now is an excellent time for organizations to re-examine and update their recruitment strategies. 

Here are a few ways your facility can maximize recruitment marketing and improve your employer branding and hiring process.

Create a vaccine plan for the workplace

On April 3, the CDC and White House reported a record 4 million vaccinations administered in one day. As the number of Americans eligible for the shot increases, professional organizations will face mounting pressure to ensure their staff are vaccinated.

Vaccination hesitation is still a serious concern, especially among healthcare workers. According to a recent survey by KFF and the Washington Post, vaccination rates stand at just 50% in nursing homes and assisted living facilities and only 26% in home health. By creating a thoughtful vaccination strategy for your facility, you can effectively protect residents and staff as well as your facility’s future. 

Make sure your plan involves accurate information about available vaccines and their health implications so your staff can make an informed decision. And don’t neglect the practicalities. Consider offering at-work vaccinations or paid time off to make an appointment. Try to stagger shifts so nurses and nursing assistants can take sick leave, if necessary.

Create career paths and mentoring programs

Make your facility a more desirable destination for target candidates by offering post-orientation support and mentorship programs. 

Recently hired nurses and CNAs may need help adjusting to a new work environment. Assign new hires a peer mentor or advisor from your senior staff so they get a friendly face and consistent emotional and mental support.

Professional development and career support are also effective strategies for both applicant attraction and employee retention. Consider how you can support RNs, LPNs, and CNAs who may want to advance to take further training, study for an advanced degree, or consider a new career path. This could mean offering tuition support as a workplace benefit or helping them choose and pursue internal career opportunities.

Invest in forward-thinking technology

While a COVID-19 vaccine may mean the end of many things, virtual recruiting and onboarding are unlikely to be among them. Now’s the time to take stock of the recruitment and employee management tools at your disposal.

From 1-click apply to remote screening, offering an applicant-friendly experience helps you stay one step ahead of the competition and prepare for an increase in the workforce. Solutions like vaccine tracking and employee documentation management not only keep you organized but also ensure that you remain in compliance in case of future nursing facility audits.

Combining strategic recruitment marketing with digital recruitment and employee management solutions can give you the leverage to successfully source, attract, and retain new talent.

Supporting Economic Recovery

There’s no doubt it’s a good time to hire. People are becoming more mobile again and while competition is not yet at its peak, workers are already on the lookout for post-COVID career opportunities. With a workplace vaccine plan, new hire and career advancer support systems, and the tools to capture ideal candidates, you can position your facility as a trusted healthcare employer.

Apploi brings the healthcare HR process online, from recruitment to staff documentation management. Interested in learning more? Contact us today for a free demo of our end-to-end solution.