healthcare-staffing-issues

A lengthy hiring process, poor candidate experience, being unable to meet hospitals’ demand — these healthcare staffing issues all stem from the same cause: Credentialing.

Nurses and doctors are used to bureaucracy. After all, they have to go through a rigorous application process for medical school, and then they have to comply with the rigid laws and regulations of the healthcare industry. In between, they have to run the gamut of credentialing that it takes to just land a job. But there’s no healthcare professional that enjoys filling out forms — and even if there were, credentialing would still proceed at a glacial pace.

There’s not that many nurses and doctors out there, but there’s plenty of healthcare staffing agencies. They may tolerate bureaucracy, but they’re not going to work with an agency that makes them jump through hoops.

Here are some actionable tips to make your credentialing process less painful.

Get certified by the Joint Commission

It’s true that becoming a Joint Commission–certified healthcare staffing agency may actually make your credentialing process even more difficult, but it cuts down on healthcare staffing issues by making your hospitals’ and candidates’ lives easier.

In addition to receiving higher quality professionals from a healthcare staffing agency that has been certified, hospitals also seek out certified staffing agencies because it reduces the amount of credentialing that they have to do. Knowing that their nurses and doctors have been sourced from a certified healthcare staffing agency means that they can have greater faith that their credentials are complete and up to date. At the same time, this means that healthcare professionals don’t have to wait as long to start delivering care and saving lives.

Conduct credentialing through a single portal

A great many healthcare staffing issues can be resolved by simply having a single place for candidates to go to when progressing through the credentialing process. In terms of cutting down your candidates’ time-to-start, using a single portal has two major benefits.

1. Candidates gain a clear understanding of their requirements

Whenever you communicate the required documents, licensing, testing, checks and so on to your candidate, there needs to be a record of that communication. Credentialing is convoluted; candidates can be forgiven for forgetting what they need before they can progress in the hiring and onboarding process.

But if candidates have to search through their texts or emails or call you over the phone to identify what they need to do next, it’s going to delay their start date and make getting to work a more frustrating process.

2. Using one portal reduces duplication

Often, government forms, ATSs and third-party portals ask for the same information over and over again. Since speed is the name of the game, cutting down on duplicated effort is a clear winning strategy when optimizing your credentialing process. Ideally, your portal should ingest this data and automatically populate it in the relevant fields.

This has the added benefit of reducing the chances that a candidate fills in the wrong information — any staffer who’s had to get a candidate to correct an erroneous form knows how much of a time-suck this can be.

Adopt agile hiring principles

Originally designed for software development, the agile methodology emphasizes adaptation and cross-functionality when carrying out a project. Even though they’re more traditionally applied in other business settings, agile principles have their place in hiring as well — especially for the complex and often changing process of hiring healthcare professionals.By ensuring that your hiring process can evolve to support changing demand, regulations and candidate circumstances, you’ll be able to attract candidates from the limited pool of qualified nurses and doctors. If you’re interested in how to implement an agile process, check out our guide on the subject. In it, we dive into the six agile principles to put into practice during your hiring and onboarding process.