How to Use Healthcare Hiring to Impact Your Quality Ratings

In 2008, the Five-Star Quality Rating System was created by The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services as a way to provide patients and their families with an easy to understand assessment of nursing home quality. 

As you know, one way to improve your quality rating is by improving your staff to patient ratios. While this is just one of many factors, it is the one that is most directly in your control.

Read on to learn how you can redesign your hiring process to staff up and positively impact your quality rating.

Four strategies that can help you hire quality nurses faster

We’re not reinventing the wheel here; we’re simply optimizing an existing (and possible outdated) hiring process with new technology. These tips are powerful on their own, but they have an added bonus of being able to set and forget them, depending on the applicant tracking system you choose to use. 

Embrace automation for a faster process

Recruitment automation is the way of the future. As emerging trends in technology highlight the use of artificial intelligence, you can use this smart technology to your advantage in the hiring process. 

In our recent healthcare applicant survey, we found that nearly half (46%) of these job seekers are applying to 11 jobs or more at once. If you’re not one of the first facilities to respond to their application, it’s no sweat off their brow — they’ll shift their focus to the organizations that can get to them first. 

One way to curtail this phenomena is to be the first to respond to candidates. There are several ways you can embrace automation in your hiring process to speed this along. For starters, you could create an email to automatically be sent to candidates confirming receipt of their application, along with next steps. Nowadays, candidates want to be kept in the loop on the progression of their application, so letting them know general turnaround times for application review is a good idea to include in this message. 

Taking this a step further, you could even use automated emails to collect missing information from applicants without the need for your hiring team to be involved. Or you could sync your hiring teams’ calendars with an interview scheduler tool to eliminate the back and forth of phone tag and emails to coordinate times that work for everyone. 

Thin the applicant herd with pre-screen surveys

Following in the same vein as automating your messaging, you could thin the applicant herd out by implementing pre-screening surveys. These surveys are one of those steps in the hiring process that your team can essentially set and forget about, trusting that they’ll continue to do their job and only progress the most qualified candidates to the next round. 

With pre-screen surveys, you can determine whether applicants have the qualifications you’re requiring for your roles — all before your hiring team even has to speak to them! You can set these surveys to be sent automatically after an application has been received as a logical next step in the process. By using “knock-out” questions, you can eliminate poor fits from the hiring process so your team can spend their time on quality candidates who are more likely to provide the best patient care possible at your facility.

Curate your employer branding

The third most commonly used resource in a healthcare job seeker’s search for their next role is a facility’s website. Websites (and career pages) are one of the best ways to showcase your company culture and establish a great first impression with candidates. In fact, the first place that 41% of applicants go to decide if a facility’s culture meets their needs is the company’s website.

For healthcare workers, they ultimately want to find their workplace home, so to speak. Nurses value stability just as much as any other profession. You may be tired of hiring temporary help through agencies, but these healthcare workers are just as tired as moving facilities and learning new work environments. Give them a place to stay at your facility by catering to what they really want from a career — flexibility, career growth, and a good work culture — and advertise it on your website to increase your applicant flow.

Proactively recruit talent

As you know, the healthcare industry has been in a perpetual state of a labor crisis since the pandemic. While there might be times when your nursing home has a comfortable level of staffing, more or less, you need to be proactively recruiting talent at all times — not just when your workers are burned out and exhausted.

You can do this by running an employee referral program year-round. Referral programs tap into your employees’ existing networks of former colleagues and friends (who may or may not be intentionally searching for another job) to pump talent into your pipeline. Referred candidates are, on average, hired faster, stay longer, and are more engaged with their employer than traditional candidates. Beyond that, this recruiting strategy also has the best ROI of all the ways you can attract talent. You can use automation here as well to send out reminders of your program to new employees or to all employees at different times of the year to instigate participation.

Another way you can proactively recruit labor is by leveraging your ability to sponsor jobs on leading job boards. When you pay to sponsor a job, your role is automatically at the top of the open positions that job seekers see — and you can keep the post up as long as you continue to fund it. Having an ongoing open role is a great way to show potential candidates that your facility is growing.

How can your nursing home manage all of these recruiting tactics?

The best way to navigate all of these innovative ways to increase both your staff levels and the quality rating at your facility is to partner with an applicant tracking system that is built for the healthcare industry — like Hireology! Our intuitive and easy to use platform allows you to have transparent insight into hiring at all of your locations, all in one place. To see how much better hiring at your facility could be with us on your side, connect with our team today!



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