CMSA Today - Issue 4, 2012 - (Page 19)

Workforce Strategy Workforce Strategy Simplified N BY ANTHONY N. MOLLICA MHI, MS Comm urses account for the majority of direct patient interaction in any health care setting and with over 3 million nurses nationally, they make up the single largest segment of any health care work force. One would think that, by this time, the nursing industry would have benchmarks and best practice models for a nursing workforce strategy. Yet, the nursing industry is plagued with higher than industry average attrition rates, lack of clarity in career path, and self supported professional development. No wonder that the nursing industry is known, shamelessly, as a place where ‘we eat our young.’ overall. These items will help a business refine its strategies and create plans that address any concerns that are apparent. The importance of a strong workforce strategy can simply be associated to an increased bottom line because of the cost of attrition and training new staff. Case management has been a highly ambiguous career path for many nurses. Nurses have heard of it, they know people who work in it, but don’t really understand what it is or how to get into it. Many nurses have taken a step into case management to ‘try it’ to see if they like it. This isn’t a strong workforce strategy. Employers of case managers would be well-advised to have clear criteria in their job description for their positions – criteria that is directly associated with the type of case management that is being conducted. As leaders, hiring managers should use the highest level of discretion in the hiring practice. It is easy to hire someone that has an RN designation, but it is difficult to hire the qualified nurse that fits the position and the future growth and development of the organization. This is the importance of strategic planning. Workforce strategies are not simple and they are directly associated with the culture of the organization. Those unwritten rules and habits of how employees behave and interact with each other have a direct correlation with their engagement level and relationships. Positive relationships lead to a high degree of trust and respect. Working in an environment that has high levels of trust is a leading indicator of retention. Year over year, the number one reason for staying with a company is ‘the people.’ It behooves all leaders to ingrain this lesson to build and maintain a strategy that directly benefits the workforce. Five simple workforce strategy steps that any case management or nursing department can implement are as follows: 1. Hire the Best – Know the job description and have the details for what competencies account for the highest performing staff and hire those who have those competencies, not those that meet ‘requirements.’ 2. Pay them Fairly – Work with human capital partners to obtain market data continued on page 30 What is a workforce strategy? Some may call this the HR strategy or people strategy, but in simple terms this is how a business can acquire, develop, and most importantly retain the workforce (a.k.a. staff ) that is necessary to accomplish the business goals. This strategy, at a minimal level, would include the policies and practices in hiring, compensation and benefits, annual reviews, performance targets, training, and succession planning. Whether one is launching a new department or maintaining an existing business, there are a few simple questions that you should ask of yourself: • Are we attracting, hiring, and rewarding our workforce appropriately? • Do we have the needed data to properly manage our business based on evidence of the current effectiveness of our workforce? • Do we have the right number of staff to meet our business expectations? • Are we motivating and retaining our workforce? Whether it be intentional or unintentional, every leader of any business will undoubtedly respond ‘yes’ to each of the above questions. The real question is how GOOD is the business at its workforce strategy? And, what MEASUREMENTS does the business have to show improvement? Almost every business measures attrition, but is it broken down to show key workforce strategies? Does the business have turnover by position, gender, race, or education level? These key demographics help understand how performance is being seen by various demographics, which may lead to better performance ISSUE 4 • 2012 • DIGITAL CMSA TODAY 19 http://www.naylornetwork.com/cms-nxt/

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of CMSA Today - Issue 4, 2012

CMSA CORPORATE PARTNERS
EMBRACING THE GOLDEN AGE OF CASE MANAGEMENT
INCOMING PRESIDENT’S MESSAGE
CAREER AND KNOWLEDGE PATHWAYS: THE JOURNEY BEGINS
SERVANT LEADERSHIP: INSPIRATIONAL VALUES
WORKFORCE STRATEGY SIMPLIFIED
DIGITAL, MOBILE, GLOBAL: EFFICIENCIES AND HINDRANCES IN THE MODERN CASE MANAGER'S ENVIRONMENT
ASSOCIATION NEWS
VIEW FROM CAPITOL HILL
CASE MANAGEMENT AND THE LAW
ETHICS CASEBOOK
MENTORING MATTERS
INDEX OF ADVERTISERS

CMSA Today - Issue 4, 2012

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