July 11th, 2019 | Val Poltorak, General Manager, Healthcare

Top 5 Insights from WBR HR Healthcare 2019

WBR HR Healthcare 2019 - Sterling breakfast

On June 18th and 19th, over 200 healthcare industry professionals met in Austin for the WBR HR Healthcare 2019 conference. Attendees had an opportunity to discuss challenges facing the industry, network with peers and hear from industry thought leaders. In a recent blog, we discussed how to manage the challenges of background screening in the healthcare industry while also limiting regulatory exposure and reputational risk.

Keynote speakers addressing a host of other issues included Heather Brace, SVP Chief People Officer, at Intermountain Healthcare, Qiana Williams, VP Chief Diversity Officer, for OhioHealth, and David Jones, CHRO of Stanford Healthcare. There were panel discussions, town halls, collaborative roundtables, workshops and interactive case studies, all exploring critical issues facing healthcare human resources practitioners. Topics ranged from predictive analytics in workforce planning and utilizing benefits to recruit and retain, to leveraging technology to shift HR from transactional to strategic, and how to communicate with the five different generations currently working in organizations.

1. Leveraging AI for HR Efficiency

Artificial Intelligence (AI) and how teams can leverage it to reduce time to hire and improve candidate experience was a particularly hot topic. Many talent acquisition professionals are eager to embrace the technology to provide a more efficient and effective recruitment process. While AI can streamline and accelerate processes, the need for genuine human interaction remains paramount when hiring and retaining team members.

2. Managing the Impact of Mergers and Acquisitions

Another topic on many attendees’ minds was mergers and acquisitions. The industry has seen significant consolidation and participants talked about the benefits of combining forces, challenges in dealing with duplicative roles and keeping employees engaged and motivated. Companies should work to minimize stress and the fear of job loss with as much transparency as possible.

3. Adapting to the Changing Workforce

The growth of the contingent workforce was discussed in detail as was the overall state of employment in the industry. With healthcare unemployment at a near record low of 1.5%, the competition for qualified candidates is fierce.

One major insight was that companies need to make significant changes in order adapt to the challenges of retaining top talent. Organizations are looking at a variety of ways to do this. One such method is to provide Individual Development Plans (IDPs), in which companies help workers in both career and personal development. These plans help employees reach short and long-term career goals, as well as improve current job performance.

4. Highlighting the Benefit of Benefits

Another takeaway included learning how healthcare companies are leveraging benefits to attract and keep top performers. This strategy is being employed not just for executives but across the spectrum. By making healthcare, wellness, retirement planning, career development and workforce flexibility more attractive, companies hope to retain highly skilled employees.

5. Closing the Generation Gap

Juggling the wants and needs of five distinct generations, ranging from baby boomers and Gen Xers to Millennials and Generation Z, adds to the complexities of human resource management. While the diversity in backgrounds and perspectives provide obvious benefits, they can also lead to misunderstanding and conflict. Companies should proactively minimize the potential for conflict by creating opportunities for cross-generational mentoring. This provides opportunities for all age groups to interact and learn from each other.

Looking ahead, thought leaders anticipate that the regulatory landscape will continue to be a challenge as governing bodies add and change hiring legislation across the country. They stressed the importance of staying up-to-date and compliant with ever-changing regulations.

Sterling Healthcare’s Jon Stockton and Dawson Pulliam hosted a breakfast during the conference. In addition to sweeping views of downtown Austin and the Colorado River, attendees enjoyed sharing best practices and anecdotes with their contemporaries.

In conclusion, WBR HR Healthcare 2019 provided a much-needed venue for human resources and talent acquisition professionals to meet and share best practices, voice concerns, learn about emerging trends and innovative solutions that companies are providing to help them solve their recruitment challenges.

To learn how Sterling is partnering with healthcare companies to help them make smarter, safer and faster hiring decisions, visit https://www.sterlingcheck.com/industries/healthcare/.

Sterling is not a law firm. This publication is for informational purposes only and nothing contained in it should be construed as legal advice. We expressly disclaim any warranty or responsibility for damages arising out this information. We encourage you to consult with legal counsel regarding your specific needs. We do not undertake any duty to update previously posted materials.