Posted on February 23, 2018

Key HR Challenges Facing Healthcare Providers

With staff shortages, high turnover and complex regulations to maintain, HR professionals in the healthcare industry have an enormous undertaking. Healthcare has quickly become one of the most highly regulated industries in the entire country and maintaining compliance continues to be a top concern for many employers. That's why it's mission-critical that health and medical providers find a Human Capital Management (HCM) provider that understands and can support their challenges, including recruiting, onboarding, time tracking, HR, payroll, reporting and compliance needs. Only then can healthcare providers get back to the mission of providing high-quality care to their patients.

medical staff meeting

Medical Staffing challenges

Shortages

Staffing shortages continue to plague the healthcare industry. More than 90% of U.S. hospital executives have expressed concern, according to a 2017 survey conducted by The Economist Intelligence Unit. With a significant number of baby boomer nurses retiring and a decreasing supply of available nurses to support the growing demand, staffing shortage concerns will only continue to increase. And it's not just a nursing shortage problem. Experts predict the next ten years will yield a deficiency of specialists, generalist physicians and other clinicians, which will hamper healthcare organizations' ability to deliver high-quality care.

High turnover

Healthcare positions such as physicians, nurses and medical assistants experience high turnover rates, with the greatest amount of turnover occurring during the first year of employment. In the past two years, Emergency Departments turned over an alarming 40% of their RN staff, according to staffing firm NSI Nursing Solutions, Inc. The Robert Wood Johnson Foundation reports that one in five nurses leaves their first nursing job within one year of hire.

This high turnover stems from several causes: According to healthcare management firm Leaders for Today, more than a quarter (27%) of respondents left their job for a promotion or a better opportunity for advancement. Another 14% left for better compensation. The largest number (58%) left for other reasons, such as long work hours, frustration, burnout and a lack of training and development.

Thorough background checks

Hospitals, medical practices and other healthcare providers must perform thorough background checks on potential employees. Since healthcare employees will be entrusted with the care of patients and with sensitive personal information, hiring organizations are most concerned about those who misrepresent themselves or use drugs.

hipaa-compliance

ACA Compliance regulation, training and certification challenges

Complex compliance regulations

The introduction of the Affordable Care Act (ACA) and continuous evolution of the regulations have created fear and anxiety for many healthcare providers. With a significant number of variable-hour employees on staff, healthcare providers are tasked with properly classifying employees and tracking their time worked to comply with ACA requirements. And for long-term care facilities, detailed compliance measures like payroll-based journal (PBJ) reporting closely scrutinizes the quality of care facilities are providing patients. But ACA compliance isn't the only thing on healthcare providers' minds. HIPPA compliance audits test their ability to protect patient information from data breaches, especially with the increase of mobile devices.

Instead of managing the changes alone, organizations have turned to reliable HCM software providers to minimize the potential risk associated with ACA, PBJ and other compliance regulations.

Certifications and credits

Healthcare organizations should have the proper tools to track certifications, as medical professionals have continuing education credits they must renew every year. To reduce risk and liability, it's crucial to have an easy system to track and report on each employee's certifications and license expiration dates.

Health and safety training

Workplace training focused on health and safety is important in all organizations, but arguably the most important in the healthcare industry. In workplaces with complex and potentially dangerous equipment, such as scalpels, syringes and X-ray machines, proper training is vital to keep employees and patients safe. It's also critical to track and have proof of that training to protect the organization from liability.

Payroll challenges in the healthcare industry

Multiple rates of pay

Healthcare organizations often have different rates of pay for different types of employees: physicians, RNs, medical assistants, lab technicians, and so on. As such, organizations need to be able to easily keep track of and automate of these differentials and ensure each employee is being paid correctly.

Unions

Nurses and other medical professionals tend to have strong unions. A highly unionized workforce presents certain human resources and payroll challenges:

  • Payroll systems must be able to easily handle union deductions and required pay scale differences
  • Reporting tools must provide accurate documentation for discussions with union leaders
  • Some union matters may also require the skill of an experienced HR professional to help secure and maintain good relationships and help the business follow all union rules

How to manage recruiting, HR, compliance & payroll challenges

With staffing shortages, the task of managing employee certifications and compliance regulations and the intricacies of employee compensation, it's easy for health care organizations to get overwhelmed. Here are some of the ways Paycor's solutions can help:

  • Robust Applicant Tracking System that streamlines the hiring process and helps prevent missing out on top medical talent
  • Electronic onboarding solution to track and manage new hire information, review and sign important company documents and minimize time-consuming manual orientation processes.
  • ACA software that provides the reports and filing services organizations need to comply with government regulations
  • Payroll-Based Journal reporting and accurate timekeeping technology to ensure you're producing the census data required
  • Integrated HR systems and reporting technology enable tracking of certification and training
  • Simplified payroll makes processing pay differentials and union deductions easy
  • Access to HR professionals who can answer questions specific to the healthcare industry helps reduce the risk of HR violations

Get in touch with a Paycor representative to learn more about how our solutions can help healthcare organizations reduce time- and resource-consuming administrative duties, enabling you to focus more on the patients you serve.

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*Sources: American Association of Colleges of Nursing, Memphis Business Journal


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