Balancing Operation and Internal Staff Management

The healthcare industry has always had to operate under a certain amount of pressure. This is especially true for Healthcare administrators struggling to balance both operations and internal staff. There are incredible levels of stress you simply wouldn’t  find in other professions and its very likely that pressure will only go up.

So, what is the role of the human resources department? What is the role of an administrator or office manager? 

Human resources in healthcare will also feel the pressure, this is true for smaller clinics and larger hospitals.  These professionals face issues like staffing shortages, employee burnout, and more. It’s essential that HR must better understand the how and why behind each one in order to overcome such hurdles. Such hurdles can include staff shortages, turnover rates, employment burnout, training, and development. 

  • Staff Shortages: In Healthcare, one of the most imminent issues involves recruiting. Simply put, there’s just not enough supply to meet the growing demand. Baby boomers are aging creating a considerable workload for medical professionals.Alternatively healthcare professionals from that generation are beginning to retire and leave the workforce . This shortage has left employers desperate to differentiate themselves and attract prospective employees. The shortage in healthcare also includes the internal administrative staff. Time and time again employees who may be cross trained, or worked in a position at some point in their career are expected to wear multiple hats. So many times we hear of someone hired as a CNA, LVN, or even manager having to step in to run the front desk, run authorizations, or handle billing. Many younger people in the workforce are looking for more competitive rates and want to work in a job they’re hired for. There has been some movement within the industry to appeal to this workforce but if these issues are not dealt with employee burnout is inevitable as will turnover. 
  • Turnover Rates: As mentioned, the struggle to keep on current staff can easily be a huge problem. Due to the high demand, employees could simply go elsewhere if they feel that they’re not valued, or considered. The  average hospital has turned over 87.8% of its entire workforce. And the numbers suggest that things may only get worse. 2018 alone was the worst turnover rate the industry has seen in over a decade.More times than not, people don’t leave their jobs, they leave their managers.  Leadership and good management is essential when it comes to retention and overall recruitment. 
  • Employment Burnout: Burnout is the cause of turnover and staffing shortages.  When employees are burnt out it has a negative impact on both patient care and patient safety. Their ability to work at their highest capacity is in jeopardy when they are overworked, and mentally and physically exhausted. Burnout could unintentionally create a disconnect between providers and patients, with providers developing unfriendly, cynical, and less empathetic attitudes. This disconnect makes them less sympathetic to the needs of patients and leaves everyone involved unhappy about the experience.  HR in healthcare can alleviate some of the burnout with reward and recognition strategies as well as training programs to increase job satisfaction among employees.
  • Training and Development: Providing employee engagement through training and development can do wonders for those wanting to learn new skills and advance at work. Training and development is a key factor in preventing burnout and turnover. This falls on the shoulders of management and HR professionals. Finding a way to handle staffing shortages, while attempting to maintain retention can be challenging but its a necessity that needs to be figured out. Although this could be expensive, administrators need to consider how much more it’ll cost to hire and train, for them to leave, and have to do it all over again. Support from management to motivate adoption among  employees can go a long way.

Healthcare can be difficult and stressful, but it also is so rewarding. Those tasked with managing and supporting healthcare professionals need to be partners with practitioners in improving employee engagement, job satisfaction, and in turn, the quality of patient care.  Through proper implementation, and a desire to do better,  they can help employees become more effective—and more satisfied—in their work.

Smile! We are Here to Help

Dane Flanigan-Principal
ultraHealth Agency Ribbon Cutting Ceremony, 2020

Life Changes Fast

A few short months ago, we cut the ribbon to open our office in Pasadena, California. Now, we’re on quarantine; since we can’t adjust the winds, we’ve had to adjust our sails.

But, it’s times like these that reveal how far we are willing to go to serve our customers and clients. At ultraHealth Agency, we are growing through uncertain times by bringing our one-of-a-kind medical staffing process to the virtual landscape.

We can’t sit down with nurses like we used to, but we can still connect with human to human.Now more than ever, healthcare companies are opening their eyes to the importance of hiring quality staff.

People that will stand with you, even through COVID-19.  People that will communicate what they need, without assuming that their leadership team knows everything.

People that will put the needs of patients and senior residents, above everything, even in times of crisis.

The people you hire will make or break your business. The people you hire are reflections of your morals and values. Let us help you hire the best providers, people who fit within the vision you have for your company.

ultraHealth Cares

Check out the videos below to see how ultraHealth Agency is supporting our healthcare professionals everyday.

Guru’s Quote of the Month

“When you don’t know where you are going, any road will get you there”

Nothing is Impossible for the Mind

Nature never discriminates. It has made the same knowledge equally available to everyone. When the mind is calm and clean it can get all the ideas. Nothing is impossible for the mind. If it is completely free from any selfishness, it is always clean and calm, always serene. In such a mind knowledge dawns by itself.

– Sri Swami Satchidananda

Guru’s Vibe:

  • Henry Mancini- Lujon
  • Ravi Shankar- The Origins
  • Dave Brubek- Take Five

Guru’s Book Club:

  • The Spontaneous Fulfillment of Desire- Deepak Chopra
  • Steve Jobs – Walter Isaacson
  • The First and Last Freedom – Jiddu Krishnamurti

This Week on LinkedIn 

Changes to Recruitment in a Ever Changing World 

Change has never been easy for me.

I’m a person that likes to plan.

And I’m a recruiter that likes to sit down with a candidate and pay attention to the details as I interview them…

Whether they smile

Whether they show up on time

Whether they’ve done their research and ask me questions

And so much more. I have always tried to consider the different layers of my candidates and trust my EQ.

For me, the work is in the details. This is important when trying to place candidates with a healthcare company that matches values.

But COVID19 has forced me to make MANY changes, the foremost being patient and flexible!

When a candidate is 3 minutes late for a video interview because of technical difficulties, I don’t hold it against them. Instead, I wait patiently with a smile.

When a candidate’s toddler makes noise or walks in their home office during an interview, I tell them, “it’s okay” and make them feel comfortable.

Now more than ever, recruiters and hiring managers should never make a candidate feel ashamed of their personal life.

We are all doing our absolute best, let’s not only remember that but show that through our interview process.

ultraHealth Agency Outlines Steps to Help Nursing Homes During Covid 19

We’ve been working closely with our senior living clients who’ve all responded exceptionally to COVID-19. Some measures we’ve seen them take are:

  1. Providing personal video messages from the CEO and leadership teams to keep residents educated about the development of COVID-19 within their respective communities. Testing Facilities
  2. Teams are leveraging iPads and other handheld technologies to help residents connect with their loved ones virtually!
  3. Sharing touching moments in the media to remind us of the positives during this time. Senior living staff are also teaching their residents new skills like how to shop online.

Additionally, some of the communities we serve are working on rapid testing availability.

Overall, it’s incredible to see how senior living leadership is working together during this time to protect their residents. It’s a reminder that even in the darkest of times, the goodness of humanity always shines through.

Thoughts? Comment below.

5 Tips for a Successful Video Interview

At ultraHealth Agency we pride ourselves in our hiring process. One important element is our interview process. Prior to interviewing anyone, our recruiters take the time to thoroughly comb through each resume that comes in. On average, recruiters take 6 seconds to look at a resume. Not us. If they have the basic qualifications we take a closer look. A bulk of the interview process starts with the resume, and then phone interview. After that we bring in each qualifying candidate to meet our Director of Talent Acquisition and Director of Placement for an in person interview. It allows us to get to know who they are and vice versa. 

Today, this has become a challenge we can not overcome due to the COVID-19 pandemic.  So we adjusted. We decided to implement video interviews. It’s not ideal for our model, however the process up to this point has remained the same. 

It been about 3.5 weeks now since we have adopted this method and we have come to realize there are some unique advantages of doing this as well as challenges. Unlike our other challenges, we can overcome these. 

 Whether your team has experience with video interviews or not, it’s important to prepare yourself   for the adaptation of a digital interview process. In no way do we want to come across unprofessional. Having the ability to polish your process will help both the interviewer and candidate .

We’ve developed the following 5 tips for a successful video interview process plus a bonus tip: :

Make sure your equipment is ready to go

Do some research on what equipment you will need, and make sure that it is something that you , your team, and the candidate can easily use. We have been using zoom. We make sure ahead of time that the invite is easy to understand. Our connections are ready to go, and our mic and sound are clear. I will admit, initially I had some trouble connecting my ear pods! Right now we have a full house and everyone is working in some capacity. It’s loud, so it’s important to find a quiet place. Silence your other devices and mute notifications. . Understand what you need to connect. If possible try to logon early. In the event technical difficulties arise, have a backup plan. Something I’ve noticed is during this time many providers are offering free trials for video conferencing. Zoom allows for the first 40 minutes free! There are other platforms that are completely free such as Google Hangouts.

Understand your process

Understanding how you will conduct your interview is important. It’s even more important to convey this to your hiring team. Outline what will be needed during the interview. When we interview candidates we evaluate a few different qualities they may have. At the top would be : How do they come off when they interview? This matters because if they move on to the next step of the hiring process they will need to sit in front of the hiring manager. We are staffing nurses primarily. Most likely they will continue to interview via video conference. It’s important that they have a good presence and it’s properly projected during this virtual process. As the recruiter and interviewer it’s important that we help them with this. We are only able to do that if we know what we are looking for and at during the interview.

Keep your candidate in the loop

Make sure that your candidate understands your expectations, just as you would during an in person interview. This method is an adjustment in itself so its help to provide them with this ahead of time, preferably during the phone interview and reiterate it with a follow up email. Thank them for applying, give them the necessary information needed to logon for the video interview. Explain to them what you will be going over and for good measure offer them the opportunity to reach out if they have any questions prior to the interview; whether it be about the position or the video process. 

Optics

Even though this is a video interview, make sure you speak with your candidate the same way you would if they were right in front of you. Be aware of your body language and theirs as well. Sit up straight, keep eye contact, and nod when appropriate to show you are following along. Another important factor is dress. They can only see the top half so make sure it’s your best half! Looking presentable will make you look professional, and don’t forget to smile, it goes a long way! 

The Interview

We work in the healthcare space. Right now especially, it’s crucial that qualified people are finding work. They are needed more than ever. During our interviews we introduce ourselves, talk about who we are as an agency and how we are here to help them. If it’s applicable, highlight your company culture or core values. Talk about your mission and how you’ve helped in the past. Painting a clear picture of who you are will put them at ease. They will know they are in good hands and will want to work with you. Review your phone interview notes and continue to take notes. Give them the respect they deserve by being attentive, in a quiet environment, remain considerate and compassionate. Should there be a technical issue on their side, don’t hold it against them. We are all trying. Thank them for their time and let them know you will  be in touch. 

Optional: Implement a feedback process

If this is a new process it’s important to know what you did right and what you didn’t get so right. You can create a simple feedback survey. Keep the questions general, ask about how they felt , the technical process and what we could have done differently. This will allow you to improve your overall process as you go along. 

An important reason why we conduct in person interviews is because we focus on a particular area in Los Angeles, Ca. It has allowed us to maintain the growth we desire without compromising our quality to attention for each and every candidate. What we have found is that this will give us the opportunity to expand our business beyond the City of Angels. For ultraHealth Agency, we want to make sure we stay as true to our process as possible. This is just another way we are able to do so.

Knocking it Out of the Park: Medical Staffing to Fight COVID 19

ultraHealth Agency in Pasadena, Ca just announced their new hiring initiative called HIRE NOW. They will be able to provide staffing for hospitals and care facilities for a one set fee. They will provide quality talent at a valued price. 

The world is experiencing a crisis like no other. It is important that we adhere to the recommendations set forth. While we take this time to take a step back and stay home with our loved ones, our healthcare professionals are at the frontline of this crisis.  ultraHealth realizes the importance of having an experienced workforce during these times.

“Above all we are here to help “

-Dane Flanigan ultraHealth Agency CEO.

877.390. 0992

ultrahealthagency.com                                                      info@ultrahealthagency.com

Take steps to protect yourself

Clean your hands often

  • Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds especially after you have been in a public place, or after blowing your nose, coughing, or sneezing.
  • If soap and water are not readily available, use a hand sanitizer that contains at least 60% alcohol. Cover all surfaces of your hands and rub them together until they feel dry.
  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth with unwashed hands

Avoid close contact

  • Avoid close contact with people who are sick
  • Put distance between yourself and other people if COVID-19 is spreading in your community. This is especially important for people who are at higher risk of getting very sick.

Take steps to protect others

  • Stay home/ Social Distancing
  • Stay in touch with your doctor. Call before you get medical care. Be sure to get care if you feel worse or you think it is an emergency.
  • Cover: Cover your mouth and nose with a tissue when you cough or sneeze.
  • Dispose: Throw used tissues in a lined trash can.
  • Wash hands: Immediately wash your hands with soap and water for at least 20 seconds
  • Do not share: Do not share dishes, drinking glasses, cups, eating utensils, towels, or bedding with other people in your home.
  • Wash thoroughly after use: After using these items, wash them thoroughly with soap and water or put in the dishwasher
  • Clean and disinfect: Routinely clean high-touch surfaces in your “sick room” and bathroom
Watch for symptomsThe following symptoms may appear 2-14 days after exposureIf you develop emergency warning signs for COVID-19 get medical attention immediately. Emergency warning signs include*:Difficulty breathing or shortness of breathPersistent pain or pressure in the chestNew confusion or inability to arouseBluish lips or face
What To Do if You Are Sick Call ahead: If you have a medical appointment, call your doctor’s office or emergency department, and tell them you have or may have COVID-19. This will help the office protect themselves and other patients. People who are mildly ill with COVID-19 are able to recover at home. Do not leave, except to get medical care. Do not visit public areas.If you are sick: You should wear a facemask when you are around other people and before you enter a healthcare provider’s office.If you are caring for others: If the person who is sick is not able to wear a facemask (for example, because it causes trouble breathing), then people who live in the home should stay in a different room. When caregivers enter the room of the sick person, they should wear a facemask. Visitors, other than caregivers, are not recommendedFollow care instructions from your healthcare provider and local health department: Your local health authorities will give instructions on checking your symptoms and reporting information