New Study from Leaders for Today Highlights Serious Staffing Concerns for Hospitals

Data shows that hospital turnover reaching epidemic proportions with few solutions in sight.

Wellesley, MA, May 11, 2017 --( Leaders for Today (LFT), a leading management staffing firm for hospitals, has announced its latest findings on the state of hospital staff hiring and turnover. The report entitled: The Other Elephant in the Hospital Room, is based on a nationwide survey of 852 hospital personnel in April 2017 including: C-Suite executives, clinical administration, non-clinical administration, staff physicians, and staff nurses. The full report and findings can be downloaded here.

The report confirms that hospitals are facing unprecedented turnover and attrition. The numbers reflect that turnover isn’t limited to just certain areas, but is rampant across the most important leadership and clinical positions in the hospital – C-Suite, clinical administration, non-clinical administration, physicians, and nurses. Survey data shows that hospitals are on a pace of needing to replace virtually half of their staff every five years.

“This study confirmed what is the worst-case scenario for many hospitals, they are losing critical employees faster than they can replace them,” said Bill Haylon, CEO, LFT. “The average hospital has hundreds of open positions at any one time. How confident would you be in going to one of these facilities for care knowing they are so short-staffed at important positions?”

Hospital Continuity is Lacking
Alarmingly, 42.8 percent of respondents have been with their current hospital for fewer than two years and 65.7 percent have been with their hospital for fewer than five years. Perhaps most concerning, 37.0 percent of candidates plan to leave their current hospital within the next two years and 68.6 percent plan to leave within five years. The institutional knowledge gap is only growing, as hospital employees from top-level leadership positions to staff nurses are switching jobs at a rapid pace.

The reality is that the current hospital ecosystem promotes high turnover. LFT’s survey results show that 27.4 percent of respondents left their job for a promotion or better opportunity for advancement. Another 14.4 percent left for better compensation. This means well over half of people (58.2%), left for other reasons including long work hours, frustration or burn out, resulting in a “vicious cycle” caused by understaffing and a lack of experience.

Retirements Adding to the Problem
The data shows that as the hospital workforce ages – a workforce that has worked longer than it expected – hospitals are looking at a significantly shrinking pool of experienced talent. Nearly 50 percent (47.7%) of respondents indicated they plan to stop working within the next ten years, while 22.1 percent of those surveyed – one out of five of a hospital’s most valuable people – are expected to retire within five years. The healthcare delivery industry is on the precipice of losing a huge portion of its knowledge and experience. It will be very challenging to replace half of the skilled workforce in such a short-period.

The Hospital Hiring Process is Broken
The survey shows that another significant contributor to the hospital employee shortage is the hiring process itself. It appears that hospitals are frequently losing candidates that are finding opportunities more quickly. Speed and transparency were cited as the top two frustrations with the hiring process as respondents listed never hearing back from the organization (50.9%) and the process taking too long (46.1%) as primary concerns. Our findings suggest that hospitals that can optimize the hiring process and move quickly will have a significant advantage in a competitive marketplace for talent. Those who can’t adjust are likely to fall even further behind.

About LFT
Leaders for Today is a dynamic, 14-year-old national healthcare interim and permanent staffing company headquartered in Wellesley, MA. When your healthcare organization is pressed to fill staffing gaps,you can rely on LFT's flexible staffing solutions to address your unique needs. We work closely with both healthcare organizations and talented candidates, helping them make the right connection at the right time, so everybody wins.

Learn more about LFT, our interim and permanent solutions, our process, and view job postings at:
Leaders for Today
Charlotte Jolicouer