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Christy Cronkite
February 22, 2022

Human resources is often an undervalued part of any practice or center. HR professionals are forced to constantly evolve and adapt in the wake of policy updates and new guidelines. They also adapt to new technology, and issues facing the world around us. As a result of increased remote workers, HR employees have found unique and innovative ways to monitor and engage employees. Below are the five biggest challenges human resources staff are currently facing:

1. High turnover rates & hyper-competitive recruiting 

The healthcare industry has struggled with staff burnout since the beginning of the pandemic. This has caused many to leave the industry entirely. There is a rapid approach of retiring baby boomers, meaning positions will continue to open across the board.

This mass departure has led to a highly competitive recruiting push from HR staff. They are scrambling to find replacements who meet their qualifications. The race for candidates has also caused an uptick in compensation requirements from prospective employees. This is because highly qualified candidates have many potential landing places.

As the COVID-19 pandemic continues, it is expected that positions will continue to open across the industry. Anjan Pahak of HR Daily Advisor states that according to research the demand for nurses will have doubled by 2025.

2. Training and Development 

It is becoming more and more common for employees to place a larger emphasis on training and development. This may be essential skills and systems to move forward in their careers. This challenge also falls squarely on the shoulders of HR teams across the industry.

Leadership teams and HR work hand in hand to provide these training development opportunities. These promote loyalty from staff and can aid in retention efforts. Pahak explains that offering these trainings can be expensive, but the cost of losing an employee due to lack of growth and hiring a replacement can be much more costly.

“Retention of employees also gets regulated when organizations offer training on leadership development, digitization, and soft skills that grow employee competencies and help them develop personally and professionally,” Pahak said. “While providing training can prove to be pretty expensive, the cost of new recruitments and training replacements is much higher.

Training your staff is a kind of investment, but it comes with a challenge for each system that needs the training to use it. In addition to that, workers will seek some support from management to motivate for the same.”

3. Data Security

The latest push to digital records and digital management have opened new doors not only for centers and practices, but cyber criminals. The large amount of personally identifiable information (PII) in these records, described by the AHA Center for Innovation as social security numbers and intellectual property, has made the healthcare industry a prime target for cyber-attacks.

“In fact, stolen health records may sell up to 10 times or more than stolen credit card numbers on the dark web,” the AHA article states. “Unfortunately, the bad news does not stop there for health care organizations — the cost to remediate a breach in health care is almost three times that of other industries — averaging $408 per stolen health care record versus $148 per stolen non-health record.”

Combating these attacks requires combined efforts from IT and human resources. For HR teams, it is critical to properly train employees on new systems. They must ensure understanding to avoid any mistakes with patients’ personal information.

4. Managing burnout

Healthcare workers are reporting increased numbers of burnout year by year as the pandemic progresses. According to Medscape’s National Burnout and Depression Report 2022, 47-percent of survey participants said they were feeling burnt out on the job.

With healthcare workers under such an increased strain due to the COVID-19 pandemic, HR teams are also monitoring the mental wellbeing of their staff closely. Engagement through routine surveys on personal feelings and stress, along with feedback on working environments are some routine ways to track the sentiments of employees.