If the quality of the candidates is the lifeblood of a healthcare staffing company then their process is the heart. It is in the process that a lot of differentiation in companies takes place. There are three key process styles that companies tend to fall into and they really set the tone for how they are going to work with you and your hospital. They are: The Hands-On Approach to Healthcare Staffing, The High Volume Approach to Healthcare Staffing and The Multi-Tasking Approach to Healthcare Staffing.
The Hands-On Approach to Healthcare Staffing
A company with this approach is going to be structured in a way that allows them maximum contact with their customers, both hospitals and traveling healthcare professionals. That means they are more likely to be split between a recruiter and a hospital client manager. This lets each group focus on meeting the needs of those clients without having to split their time. This elevates the level of attention and expertise they are able to give to their customers and thus their service.
A company with this approach is also going to have a cautious approach to working with Vendor Management Systems (VMS) if it limits their ability to connect with their hospitals because that affects their ability to provide the best customer service they can. This can limit the number of jobs they have, but the trade-off is the service their clients do receive and the experience their travelers have at an assignment.
Companies with the hand-on approach are also going to want their recruiters to have smaller “desk sizes” or the numbers of travelers they will work with at any given time, so they can focus on individuals and not numbers.
The High Volume Approach to Healthcare Staffing
A high volume approach company is going to be structured to work with large numbers of clients and travelers. They are more likely to encourage larger desk sizes for their recruiters and ask them to also be the hospital contact. As a result they work with a large number of VMS, which aggregate companies to compete for a hospital’s jobs and take the work out of finding new customers for companies. Their structure allows them to process more travelers, but the level of customer service can suffer as a result of a lack of focus in one area.
The Multi-Tasking Approach to Healthcare Staffing
A company using a multi-tasking approach is going to ask their recruiters to also be the hospital contacts, which has the advantage of direct contact for the Nurse Manager of HR specialist with the same person talking to the nurse, therapist or tech. On the flip-side, however this set up usually means that the recruiters are assigned regions or states that they focus on. This can result in a disjointed experience for the traveler who has to switch recruiters if they want to work in a different part of the country, which affects the company’s ability to attract new travelers if they don’t feel a connection to a recruiter.
This type of company is also going to rely heavily on working with VMS in order to offset the amount of time that is required to recruit healthcare professionals. This means that they have to put a lot of focus on volume because the number of candidates submitted to hospitals through a VMS can be a large number.
Conclusion about Evaluating a Healthcare Staffing Company’s Processes
All of these approaches are different and which one is best for you really depends on your situation and how your hospital is structured. In the next post in this series we will look at evaluating a healthcare staffing company’s cost.