Australian Healthcare Talent Management – A Financial Perspective

Whilst we tend to think of all the talent management challenges facing Australian healthcare organisations from the perspective of HR, the reality is that chief financial officers and other leaders outside the HR office are greatly affected by and have a huge stake in these issues.

Although the day-to-day problems of recruiting, onboarding, employee engagement and performance are under the domain of HR leaders and specialists, high-level financial officers need to be involved with and understand what’s at stake to see how HR can help the organisation attain its goals.

Increasing Cost Pressures

Australia faces an ageing population, and that means not only that more Australians will be requiring services, but also that more healthcare professionals are needed to service this growing need. Exacerbating these two issues is a subset of the ageing one – more healthcare professionals are retiring.

To address this perfect storm of problems, healthcare organisations must be ever diligent in their management of the talent they need, the talent they acquire and the talent they have:

  • Talent acquisition: Healthcare organisations should have more insight to better allocate recruiting dollars, in order to attract the best possible talent as quickly as possible. With the proper data in hand, organisations can determine where their money is best spent – what recruiting tactics work better than others, including where talent comes from and what talent succeeds in your organisation. If a particular talent pool keeps bringing you talent that doesn’t stick around, for example, you need to eliminate or reduce those hires, and the cost savings will be eye-opening. Bad hires hires are expensive, from wasted time and resources in the interviewing process through training and rehiring. Fortunately, people analytics are readily available today that can shine light on your hiring and allow you to improve your hiring – a huge financial benefit.
  • Onboarding: By automating onboarding procedures, you’ll speed the process of turning a new hire from a cost to a fully functional, productive employee that is providing your healthcare organisation with true value, like servicing your patients. In addition, people analytics can shed light on your best onboarding practices as well as the ones that can use improvement, further improving the path to productivity for new employees.
  • Performance: Healthcare organisations can best achieve their goals and mission with a high-performing workforce. Today’s evolving workforce presents countless challenges – mounting retirement, millennials with their new idea of the workplace, engagement and retention challenges, annual performance reviews and more. Imagine being able to improve just one of these areas just a few percentage points, by keeping a top performer or two around longer or elevating an employee from average to outstanding. By improving the performance of your employees, not only will you improve your organisation’s ability to achieve its goals, but you’ll also improve your organisation’s bottom line.
  • Succession and Development: By ensuring good succession planning is in place, HR can help reduce the costs associated with unexpected (and even expected) talent and leadership losses. Without the proper people and skill sets identified to succeed others and the skills they take with them, high costs will be incurred to replace them. Furthermore, strong leaders are necessary to inspire and develop teams, and without new leaders being identified and without new and existing leaders continuing to be developed, the organisation will suffer financially and will experience less than optimal workforce performance.

An Improved Financial Bottom Line

With these talent management pillars functioning at a high level, HR will not only succeed in delivering high value to the organisation’s workforce, but it will also improve the financial condition of the organisation.

Underpinning these pillars, people analytics can not only shed light on valuable organisational information, but also drive workforce improvements that can cut costs, improve productivity and improve healthcare service. Data can show if recruiting dollars can be spend more effectively, if top performers properly identified and positioned for personal growth, where bottlenecks are in your workflows and more.

A better performing, more efficient and less wasteful workforce to improve a healthcare organisation’s performance, including the healthcare it provides to its patients – it’s a chief financial officer’s dream.

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