There’s a great interview with Rebecca Quammen on Healthcare Informatics that talks about Health IT staffing challenges that are likely familiar to many who read this blog. Here’s one part of her interview that likely hits home to many HR directors at hospitals that are trying to fill IT roles:
There also is a huge deficit in the actual ability to recruit specific talent with experience in various IT products and EHR products. In my firm, we watch what’s going on with our clients and prospective websites where there are postings for open positions, and we see positions open for three months, six months and even longer periods of time. And the obvious impact of that on an organization is that they’ve lost opportunities during that time to continue to move their initiatives forward.
This is a real problem that I see over and over again and it’s really frustrating to IT managers and CIOs that can’t get HR to fill their highly specialized IT positions. Many hospital HR directors don’t have the skill or the toolset to be able to fill health IT jobs. They don’t know about health IT specific job boards that will help them find qualified candidates. They just tell the IT manager that the position can’t be filled. The hiring processes they use for other non-technical hospital positions rarely works for health IT jobs.
That’s illustrated well in this data from a HIMSS Workforce Study:
According to the 2014 HIMSS Workforce Study released in 2015, nearly 70 percent of providers said the lack of qualified talent was the biggest challenge to achieving a fully staffed department and 30 percent said they scaled back or put an IT project on hold due to a shortage in staffing.
It’s unfortunate when projects get pushed back because you can’t fill your health IT positions. If you’re an IT manager or hospital CIO that’s suffering from your HR department’s ability to fill your highly skilled positions, send them a polite note with a link to the health IT Central job board. Most the time it’s not that the HR person doesn’t want to fill your position. It’s just that they don’t know where to look. Healthcare IT Central is a great place to start.