A workforce crisis is threatening the U.S. economy in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic. Research from the U.S. Chamber of Commerce found 8.1 million vacant job openings in the United States. As lawmakers, nonprofits, and employers consider how to help close employment gaps, apprenticeship programs have been gaining attention.

According to the SentencingProject.org, nearly one in three adults in the U.S.—or 70 million Americans—have a criminal record, including those who were arrested but not convicted. For many of these individuals, a criminal record creates a significant barrier to employment, even when the record includes only a misdemeanor arrest or conviction.

It’s always intriguing to find areas that improved during the pandemic. According to applicants, it happened in recruiting. The 2020 North American Candidate Experience Research Report found positive sentiment from candidates shot up (from 25% to 31%), while resentment dropped (from 14% to 8%). This finding leads to the obvious question: Why?

As of June 18, 2021, as this could change at any time, 37 states allow the medical use of marijuana, and 18 states permit the adult use of marijuana.[1] Many employers, and undoubtedly multi-state employers, are struggling with new rules that impact their operations. What do these new rules mean for workplace drug testing programs?  Should employers continue testing for marijuana? – can they?

Many organizations commit to enhancing both diversity and inclusion, but most companies end up pushing diversity measures while falling short on improving inclusion. Diversity is easier to measure concretely through data collected from applicants and employees. As long as people are willing to disclose demographic information, you can monitor diversity.

Although the healthcare talent shortage has been looming for years now, it hit home last year during the height of the pandemic. In November, more than 1,000 U.S. hospitals acknowledged experiencing a severe worker shortage. 

The COVID-19 pandemic put an immense strain on healthcare workers and exacerbated the ever-growing healthcare workforce shortage. Even contingent labor pools, a common go-to for healthcare organizations to bolster staffing, were stretched thin last year. In the pandemic's early months, one travel nursing organization saw their order volume jump more than seven times year-over-year levels.

More than a year since the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic, the workplace has changed forever. As we continue on the road to recovery, the virtual 2021 American Society for Healthcare Human Resources Administration (ASHHRA) Conference provided an opportunity for healthcare HR professionals to connect, innovate, and transform the future of the industry. “We spent 2020 dealing with the fall out from COVID and moving to telemedicine,” said Jeremy Sadlier, Interim Executive Director at ASHHRA.

Workplace drug testing has been around for more than forty years in the U.S.  At the start, drug testing was all about compliance with federal rules and has since evolved with state-specific laws and case laws that employers also need to follow. The primary goal of these rules is to maintain safety in our workplaces.

Even as COVID-19 vaccine distribution is bringing hope for a brighter future, the past 12 months are catching up with healthcare employees and practitioners. A recent survey exploring the pandemic’s impact on healthcare workers’ mental health reveals that 93% reported stress, while 77% said they had frustration and 76% exhaustion and burnout.

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