Healthcare IT Solutions. Global Project Professionals.

Amid one of the lowest national unemployment rates in 20 years, HR professionals today are up against a major challenge. Virtually every industry is feeling the heat when it comes to attracting highly-qualified candidates, especially as baby boomers retire at an incredible rate of 10,000 per day without the people to replace them1.

Recruitment woes are especially prominent for technical roles that require specialized skill sets — in fact, unemployment for technical workers is well below the national average at only 2%1. Since the Bureau of Labor Statistics estimates a 12% increase3 in demand for technical roles over the next decade, things aren’t likely to get easier any time soon. For healthcare organizations, the challenge is compounded by an aging population putting additional strain on an already overburdened healthcare system1. Technical innovations designed to serve patients more efficiently continue to push the industry forward — but with those innovations comes a greater demand for specialized skill sets within healthcare IT teams.

For recruiters and HR professionals in the healthcare industry, that means both an opportunity and a challenge. Recruiting the right talent could help an organization position itself as an industry leader, but failure to do so could just as quickly spell disaster. So how can HR professionals prepare for the future of healthcare IT recruitment? Consider these three key strategies for preparing for the days ahead and tips on how to best implement each.

Strategy #1: Build pipelines and databases of talent for hard-to-fill vacancies.

More often than not, the true challenge in hiring top talent is connecting with qualified professionals in the first place. You can’t screen candidates that never apply for a position — and with job-seekers utilizing countless avenues to find and apply for jobs, Recruiters like you are often sent on a wild goose chase trying to track down the right people for the right roles. By creating pipelines and building extensive databases of candidates with highly sought-after skill sets, you can circumvent the often frustrating and roundabout process of advertising a role online. You are able to reach out to candidates directly, allowing them to make a stronger case for your organization and the role itself.

Tips to try:

Partner with companies that specialize in technical recruitment. While building a database with qualified technical candidates can be a challenge — especially for a healthcare organization that’s new to this type of recruitment — it’s often more cost- and time-effective to partner with a firm that already had a well-established database of technical job-seekers.
Work with an agency that can expedite the screening process. Many recruitment firms employ specialized screening processes that filter out candidates based on a variety of factors — skills, experience level, and cultural fit just to name a few. Since it takes an average of 26 days to fill a technical role, this can expedite an already lengthy process and save money down the line.


Strategy #2: Capitalize on graduates of training programs that rely on matching previous experience, but don’t require the rigor of a full degree.

As the demand for specialized roles increases, many major companies are forgoing the long-established requirement for a college degree in favor of candidates that have the right hands-on experience in a particular type of work. The likes of Apple, Costco and Google are all following along with this new trend of “new collar” workers in an effort to fill positions that would otherwise remain vacant for weeks and months on end. Since nearly two-thirds of American adults do not have a college degree, this is a wise strategy. After all, there are plenty of other training formats that arm job-seekers with highly-specialized skill sets without the academic rigor and cost of a full college degree — and healthcare organizations would be wise to consider graduates from alternative training programs in their search for new talent.

Tips to try:

Focus on finding programs rather than graduates. Plenty of programs specialize in providing participants with very specific, highly-applicable skill sets — often in accelerated formats designed to get candidates fully qualified for a role in a matter of weeks or months. Knowing where to find these graduates often starts with finding the programs that build on specific skills an organization might need. Don’t wait for those graduates to come to you — expedite the process but reaching out to these programs early on.

Strategy #3: Do your due diligence on tech trends, and include those insights in your recruitment efforts.

Tech innovation is moving at warp speed, with new technologies emerging virtually every minute of every day. Healthcare is no exception — in fact, investors have funded hundreds of new healthcare tech startups since 2012, due in part to the healthcare innovation goldrush prompted by the Affordable Care Act. In response, hospitals and healthcare organizations are forced to continually update their own processes and technology to keep pace, often relying on their IT teams to lead the way. This puts a premium on top talent that can drive innovation internally — and for recruiters, that means staying a step ahead when determining what skill sets and abilities your organization’s IT team will need today and in the future. HR professionals need to look beyond what is in-demand today and begin to also consider needs for the future. To do it, recruiters need to have a strong understanding of emerging tech trends in the healthcare industry and begin thinking critically about how they’ll continue to attract talent going forward.

Tips to try:

Include your current IT team in recruitment discussions. When it comes to identifying key trends in HIT, there’s no one better to ask than the people at the front lines: your current IT team. Make a point to discuss what they think is on the horizon within their industry, and involve them in conversations about the most in-demand skills in the years to come.
Tap into insights and knowledge from specialized healthcare IT consulting firms. Consultants that specialize in healthcare IT can be a wealth of knowledge when it comes to emerging trends in healthcare innovation and the tech industry as a whole. After all, it’s in their best interests to know exactly what’s coming so they can position themselves to be a vital resource in healthcare organizations’ recruiting efforts. Their databases, networks and deep expertise in the industry could be exactly what your organization needs to level-up your recruitment efforts without adding additional time to recruiters’ already busy days.

Healthcare organizations might be up against major recruitment challenges in the days ahead — but with the right tools and resources at your disposal, the new era of healthcare IT offers extraordinary opportunities. By building pipelines and databases; extending the search to non-degree candidates; and investigating emerging tech trends, recruiters can enhance their talent acquisitions efforts in a big way. In today’s quickly moving digital landscape, recruiters simply can’t afford to waste time and resources with underperforming recruitment strategies. Contact our team to find out how HealthTek Global can help you build the technical team that will help your organization get out ahead in the digital age.