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Watch Out for These Seven Health Care Hiring Pitfalls


Losing candidates and not sure why? Sometimes when you’re focusing on filling empty roles and combating staffing shortages, it can be hard to zoom out and see the bigger picture.

Due to staff shortages and high turnover, many health care organizations need to hire more rapidly than ever before. The urgent and fast-paced nature of health care hiring means that it can be easy to stumble into hiring pitfalls. Here are some of the most common issues to watch out for.

1) Not Having a Recruitment Strategy

When you’re facing a staffing shortage, like the one affecting health care organizations, it can be tempting to hire at volume without a defined strategy. After all, creating a recruitment strategy takes time, and that might feel like a luxury you can’t afford.

Speed is important, but taking the time to create a recruitment strategy can help you hire smarter and improve retention in the long run.

Recruitment strategies can cover everything from the open positions you want to prioritize to your standardized interview process and the types of benefits you’d like to highlight.

Not sure where to begin? Consider a recruitment audit to better understand your current process and find areas to improve.

2) Failing to Incorporate DEI

Even if you have a strong diversity, equity, and inclusion (DEI) policy when it comes to fair pay and internal promotions, that doesn’t always translate into your hiring process. It’s important to reduce the impact of bias (including unconscious bias) throughout the hiring process. Having multiple eyes on your recruiting materials can help make your hiring process more inclusive since it’s hard for one individual to fully assess the big picture.

Inclusively worded job descriptions, carefully thought-out interview questions, DEI-commitment statements, and training for your hiring managers can all be part of a recruitment DEI initiative.

Pay transparency can also help you stand out and mitigate the very real effects of gender- and race-based wage gaps. Here’s a resource to help you learn more about inclusive hiring.

3) Not Spending Enough Time on Company Culture

Company culture is more important than you might imagine. In fact, according to LinkedIn, 40% of professionals prioritize colleagues and culture when deciding to accept a position.

Company culture can be hard to define but usually consists of respect, physical and medical safety, work-life balance, growth opportunities provided to employees, social events, employee appreciation, and more. Many companies have core values that they use to guide their cultural goals.

Don’t make flash judgements about someone’s cultural fit, as these can come from unconscious biases. Take time to share what makes your workplace special and allow candidates ample time to respond.

4) Not Taking Advantage of Employee Referrals

According to CareerBuilder, 82 percent of employers state that employee referrals have the best return on investment for recruiting. In addition, 88 percent of employers stated their best candidates came from referrals, as opposed to other methods of recruitment.

Employee referrals are a powerful tool for hiring managers and shouldn’t be ignored. Offering bonuses for employees who successfully refer new hires can also help boost morale. Usually employees will only refer candidates who they think would be a good fit for the position, so these candidates tend to have a higher success rate.

5) Writing Misleading Job Descriptions

While 72% of hiring managers claim that they provide “clear job descriptions,” only 36% of candidates agree. There’s clearly a discrepancy between how hiring managers and candidates see job descriptions.

Sometimes, job descriptions can be misleading unintentionally. Maybe the role has changed, and you’re still using older descriptions. Update your job descriptions and tailor them to the job board you’re using for the best results.

6) Relying on Paper Files

Sure, it can take some effort to transform a paper-based system to a fully digital hiring process, but it’s worth it. When your information is stored in physical files, you run the risk of increased errors, a slower hiring process, and a messy storage system.

With digital hiring, you can streamline your process and greatly reduce errors. Candidates will also appreciate their own ease of access, as they’ll be able to communicate quickly and view their materials. They’ll also be able to fill out their onboarding documents faster and more efficiently.

7) Losing Focus on Retention

Retention is crucial. When you improve retention, you can also spend more time on your hiring decisions. In other words, it’s easier to find your ideal candidate when you’re not overwhelmed with trying to fill an unreasonable number of vacancies.

Focusing on hiring and retention simultaneously can help you work smarter, not harder. And ultimately, there’s nothing better for both recruiting and retention than living up to your promises, paying fairly, and protecting your workers. Retention begins with hiring. Avoid these hiring pitfalls, and you’re on the right track.

Of course, these aren’t the only hiring pitfalls health care recruiters face. For more information, check out our blog on common hiring mistakes.

Viventium Recruiting and Applicant Tracking Powered by Apploi

It can be tricky navigating hiring without falling into one of these pitfalls. Thankfully, the right tools can serve as a guide. Viventium Payroll and Viventium Recruiting powered by Apploi gives you the tools to find top candidates, make an offer, and bring them on board before the competition gets a chance.

Interested in learning more? Reach out for your free demo.


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