Regina Temple Talks About How to Improve Employee Retention in Healthcare

healthcare organizations

When it comes to staff retention, the healthcare industry faces an intense challenge. Shortage of qualified workers, high levels of stress and long hours make it very difficult to keep employees happy and engaged in the healthcare industry. In fact, several thousand registered nurses (RNs) left the workforce during the COVID-19 pandemic due to stress, burnout, and retirement. As Regina Temple mentions, staff turnover is expensive and has a detrimental impact on the quality of care provided by a healthcare facility. Hence, it becomes vital to prioritize employee retention in healthcare.

Regina Temple shares insight into improving employee retention in healthcare

Healthcare is quite a high-stakes industry, and employee retention is one of the biggest challenges faced by healthcare organizations. A uniquely strategic approach is required to retain healthcare workers, and there is very little room for error. There are several factors that impact the decision of a healthcare worker to leave their current position, including burnout, salaries, career development, and work-life balance.

In any field or role, it is much less expensive to retain employees than to hire new ones. This is especially true in a highly specialized field like healthcare. Hence, it becomes important for healthcare executives to explore ways to improve employee retention, like creating policies for on-demand pay and other competitive pay options. Simply telling employees that they would be provided with competitive pay is not enough today. Healthcare employees often demand more than a higher salary. They tend to be more attracted to an employer that offers on-demand pay, which is a payment plan that allows workers to access a portion of their pay-check instantly and flexibly instead of waiting until the end of a pay period. Employers may even provide other types of compensation to healthcare employees, like spot bonuses, performance-based bonuses and differentials. It would be also a good idea to provide sign-on bonuses to new hires to sweeten the deal and set the precedent for future employee engagement levels.

Apart from competitive wage, salaries and pay disbursement options, healthcare organizations must also provide an attractive benefits package that helps employees to take care of their mental and physical health. Beyond the standard employee benefits provided by most employers, it would be a good idea to offer distinctive perks that help healthcare workers navigate daily life and alleviate stress outside of work. These perks might include:

  • Pet care stipends
  • Mental health subsidies
  • Flexible vacation and leave policies
  • Child care assistance
  • Gym memberships/classes
  • Commuter benefits like discounted transportation or parking passes

As Regina Temple points out, there are two simple methods for providing these additional benefits, health and wellness stipends or a lifestyle spending account. A health and wellness stipend is a form of monetary allowance that employees can use to pay for medical care, gym memberships, or any products/services that support their mental, physical, or financial health. On the other hand, a lifestyle spending account is a flexible benefits program that covers “non-health” perks such as pet care, day care, fitness classes or memberships, child care assistance, commuter benefits, or anything else that helps employees feel their best.

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