Finding qualified clinical staff is a big job. And from hospitals to nursing homes to SNFs and LTACs, each facility has different, unique needs. Each also serves different patients in varying geographical area. This all makes finding the right staff more complex than ever before — a challenge that many leaders are meeting with the help of healthcare VMS.
> New to healthcare VMS? Check out our intro to healthcare vendor management services (VMS) here.
The Importance of Quality Clinical Staffing in 2022
The advantage of having a staffing and recruitment system that’s well thought out, tested and executed should seem self-evident. But this important process too often takes a backseat to other operational prerogatives. And some organizations may have legitimately invested in a top-tier system of staff procurement only to be let down when a single chain in their link of vendors breaks down.
And when that happens, the result is too often a slide in the quality of care and outcomes, and even revenue and market share.
“Over the past 25 years, numerous research studies have documented a strong positive impact of nurse staffing on both care process and outcome measures,” as the authors of a study published in Health Services Insights on staffing in nursing homes wrote. They also pointed out that higher-trained nurses deliver a greater chance to achieve those positive impacts.
“The strongest positive relationships are found between RNs (with two to four years of training) and quality, which is stronger than the relationship between licensed vocational/practical nurses (LVNs/LPNs; who have less training than RNs) and quality,” they concluded.
“Total nurse staffing levels (which includes RNs, LVNs/LPNs, and certified nursing assistants [CNAs; with about two weeks of training]) are also related to quality.”
Those lessons apply to other facilities, as well. In hospitals, where budget-minded restructuring has sometimes impacted staffing, little attention is usually paid to quality-control regarding staffing and recruitment.
And even though the motivation behind this oversight is usually to cut expenses, the result is often the opposite. In competitive hospital markets, higher levels of nurse staffing “had a positive association with financial performance,” as a 2020 study published in Health Care Management Review concluded.
On top of that, failure to retain staff is also costly. Many studies have pointed out the high cost of nurse turnover, with one tagging the cost at tens of thousands of dollars per nurse. And that was before Covid-19 struck and made recruitment costs even higher.
Indeed, given factors like the pandemic-related nurse shortage, the clinical demands of value-based care, and a competitive care marketplace, finding and keeping high-quality clinical talent has never been more important. Cutting corners in any part of that continuum could lead to poor outcomes and even long-term operational decline.
How Healthcare VMS Can Help with Staffing & Recruitment
Given the importance of clinical staffing — and its increasing complexity — more and more organizations are turning to healthcare vendor management services (VMS) for help with these crucial staffing and recruitment tasks.
And particularly for facilities seeking the best possible workers within a limited or highly competitive geographical area, every one of those tasks is mission-critical. From procurement and onboarding to ongoing education and a positive work/life balance, any weak link could sink quality and outcomes.
Many leaders understand this and have already turned to vendors to help manage these various aspects. And, taking things one step further, a healthcare VMS offers a means to oversee and manage all these vendors from a single source, including:
- Finding and hiring essential workers
- Sourcing and managing contingency staff (like travel nurses)
- Interviewing and hiring
- Performing background checks
- Billing and invoicing
- Data tracking and reporting
- Managing compliance
- Managing EHR systems
Better management of all of these factors yields other benefits, too. Expert handling of scheduling and sourcing can better prepare facilities for seasonal fluctuations throughout the year. And professional sourcing and management of contingency staff like travel clinicians can help you give your regular staff a better work/life balance. And that, in turn, helps you retain the quality workers you already have.
A healthcare VMS can also help cut costs by managing each task to its fullest potential, therefore reducing inefficiency and redundancy. You’ll also get access to the best possible system or technology for each aspect of staff hiring and management — particularly helpful at a time when hackers are exploiting weaknesses in healthcare records systems at an alarming rate.
Why Trust CareerStaff with Your Healthcare VMS Needs?
By making sure each link in your staffing and recruitment chain is working at top capacity, a healthcare VMS partner can help healthcare provider organizations shore up critical oversights or inefficiencies in their processes. And that not only helps you hire and retain important clinical workers, but also makes the entire process more efficient and cost effective.
And when it comes to healthcare VMS, you can trust CareerStaff to provide exceptional, market-leading services — and then some. We’re proud to be a Joint Commission-Certified company, offering vendor management solutions that can drive efficiency by lowering your administrative burden and automating redundant operations. Contact us today to learn more or request a consultation.