skip to main content
5 Changes to Help Healthcare Organizations Thrive Amid Disruption

5 Changes to Help Healthcare Organizations Thrive Amid Disruption

by David Ducharme and Sherzod Odilov

Story Highlights

  • Organizations are more resilient when employee engagement is strong
  • Hiring employees based on talent will help organizations thrive
  • Changes in the employee experience may help retain your top talent

COVID-19 has disrupted many industries and reshaped the way most organizations operate. Healthcare organizations have been especially affected by the disruptive force of this global pandemic: Hospitals lost an estimated $202 billion from March to June alone.

Yet all hope is not lost. Gallup analytics discovered that business units experiencing disruption are at an increased advantage and more resilient than their peers when employee engagement is strong.

A little-known secret to sustaining strong employee engagement is to hire candidates who have the naturally recurring patterns of thinking, feeling and behaving that enable them to excel in their particular role.

Gallup calls this talent and has found that 70% of the variance in employee engagement is attributable to the manager -- in effect, to the manager's talent. Engagement is magnified when a high-talent manager is paired with a high-talent employee. Thriving during disruption is possible with an intentional focus on engaging your employees.

High-talent healthcare professionals experienced 15% less turnover than anyone else which positively affects the bottom line.

To Retain and Hire Top Talent, Refine the Employee Experience

High-talent healthcare professionals expect more from their organizations, and healthcare leaders have a responsibility to meet those expectations to truly see the benefits of hiring top talent. Therefore, one of the keys to retaining top talent is to assess where you need to make changes to your employee experience. Below are some examples of changes all organizations should consider:

  1. Modernize broken performance management approaches that repel top talent. Only two in 10 employees strongly agree that their performance is managed in a way that motivates them to do outstanding work, and 95% of managers are dissatisfied with their performance management system.
  2. Hold managers accountable for providing opportunities to learn and grow. The No. 1 job feature that high-talent candidates want most is the opportunity for development and growth.
  3. Connect your mission and purpose to everything you do. High-talent healthcare professionals are mission-driven -- outlining an organization's purpose and mission and connecting that to employees' roles is a powerful long-term employee value proposition.
  4. Reimagine your engagement strategy. In healthcare organizations engagement is not just a nice idea -- it saves lives. Workgroups with higher nurse engagement have statistically lower mortality and complication indexes. In addition, top 25% engagement level hospitals have 41% fewer patient safety incidents than bottom 25% hospitals.
  5. Strengthen your employer branding. High-talent candidates and employees are part of the community that healthcare systems serve and your brand having a good reputation is one of the top reasons why they consider coming to work for (and stay at) your organization.

In healthcare organizations engagement is not just a nice idea -- it saves lives.

One large healthcare organization has partnered with Gallup to do just that. This organization has demonstrated that, when leaders base their hiring decisions on assessing talent in addition to traditional considerations like skill and education, employees can help you thrive. According to our analysis of this organization:

  • High-talent healthcare professionals from various job categories generally perform better than their peers.
  • They have better chances of rising to the top 20% of performers.
  • High-talent healthcare professionals experienced 15% less turnover than anyone else, which positively affects the bottom line.

When asked about assessing talent in hiring decisions, the VP of Talent Acquisition at this organization said:

"I think the quality of hires improved. We saw retention improve in some of the areas. I think that's why [assessing for talent] is so important -- to make sure it's a strong match. There's never a guarantee. But if we have a tool that can tell us that the predictor of success is high for an individual, then we'll keep them, and they will see a long career with us."

In addition to the general benefits of hiring top talent, the VP also recognized that top talent helps the organization during times of great disruption, like COVID-19:

"I think [assessing for talent] really is a gold mine to really show how they work, how they adapt, and really show different strengths too. I think it reemphasizes the quality and the seriousness that we are looking for in others."

In fact, due to these benefits, Gallup research has found that organizations that select the top 20% of candidates from Gallup assessments have been found to achieve 30% higher profitability.

As COVID-19 continues to reshape society, it will be critical for healthcare organizations to strengthen their talent pools. The best healthcare organizations will take a holistic look at improving their employee experience, ranging from how well they attract and hire talent to how well their managers and performance management systems inspire performance.

A surefire way to make your talent pool a competitive advantage is to use proven objective talent assessments to identify and hire top talent faster than ever before. A talent acquisition leader put it this way, "We focus on our differentiator and make sure that our hiring process is succinct and finds strong candidates who will stay."

Thriving healthcare organizations begin with the employee experience:




Gallup World Headquarters, 901 F Street, Washington, D.C., 20001, U.S.A
+1 202.715.3030