Health care talent shortages need our attention

For healthcare organizations to be successful they need good, quality talent. They are now facing shortages in this area.

B.E. Smith, a healthcare recruitment firm, offers some strategies to the industry for use in overcoming these drop-box-picture-683x1024problems.

According to an article from B.E. Smith the next 20 years will give us, on the average, three million retiring baby boomers. Replacements for these expected retiring boomers is not growing at the same rate.

  • Turnover for Hospital CEOs was 18% for 2015, the second highest since 2000. A B.E. Smith recent report pointed out the substantial implications of CEO openings: 40% of the survey respondents said “strategic planning and service development” were most impacted; 25% cited “employee/physician engagement.” Both areas increased from the previous year survey.
  • Nursing shortages will also grow. More than half of nurses are over 50 years of age and 62% of those are over 54 and are thinking about retirement.
  • Physician aging is another concern as well. Forty three percent of active physicians were 55 or older in 2013. Due to stressed environment 44% say they will take steps to reduce patient access to their services which could include retirement.
  • There are many new leadership roles and they need to be filled.

Labor shortages are developing from the aging population. According to C. Raphael “Reinventing Long-Term Care and Post-Acute Care” nearly 15% of the U.S. is currently over 65. Predictions are that this number will reach 20% by the year 2050.

There is definitely a growing competitive market for labor now. According to a recent survey by B.E. Smith, 33% of leaders identified “access to high quality talent” as their major challenge. Competition for experienced professionals is high which results in turnover rates that averaged 19% for employers in 2015. Long term facilities, according to the report had the highest voluntary turnover. B.E. Smith’s survey underscored the urgency, which found that 38% of leaders are considering a change within a year.

Management and future leaders are facing many pressures with an insufficient talent pool to work with. Some factors contributing to this are: Underinvestment in leadership development; Tighter operating margins; Finding managers who meet new requirements.

B.E. Smith offers some recommended ways to help fight shortages such as:

  • Elevate your recruiting efforts.


Attentiveness to what will influence recruitment the most will pay in the long run.

  • Bridge the gap with transitional solutions.


Interim leaders can bridge the gap and keep organizational momentum moving forward.



  • Constantly build networks.


Senior executives and Human Resource leaders will need to focus expanding their talent networks.

  • Understand and adapt to generational differences.


  • With four generations in the workforce, Millennials are now the largest and organizations must tailor their recruitment and retention to the differing generations. This will include work expectations, communication and learning styles.

The shortage of talent is a significant challenge but assistance is available. Recruitment firms, such as Select Practice Opportunity, are waiting to help.