Data-Driven Workforce Management Best Practices for Healthcare

Data-Driven Workforce Management Best Practices for Healthcare
Marketing Specialist

Employees are the most important asset and expense to any organization and its long-term success; therefore, workforce planning and analytics should be a core strategic consideration for all businesses and its leaders. Strategic workforce planning and analytics deliver invaluable insights into your workforce that will lead to better decision making and place your organization in a position that will outpace competitors. From developing better hiring and retention strategies to improving patient outcomes, the data obtained is key.

Although 76 percent of organizations stated workforce analytics are important to their overall business strategy, only 17 percent admitted they are highly focused on adopting it, says David Kargman, a NA GTM Strategy Lead at SAP, an enterprise application software. This is a growing concern in today’s complex healthcare landscape because the demand for top talent is at an all-time high and the supply is low. In fact, the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) has projected that there will be a need for over 1 million nurses from replacement and growth in the workforce by 2022, with a shortage of registered nurses projected to spread across the country over the next 15 years.

While you plan for your healthcare organization’s future and decide whether workplace planning and analytics is beneficial to you, here are a few things to consider:

Who Owns the Planning Process?

There are several stakeholders involved, each holding their respective roles. “While the HR function is primarily responsible for designing and implementing a workforce planning strategy, there’s no doubt that executive leadership, finance, as well as line and functional managers are essential players,” says Paula Clapon, Digital Marketing Strategist at Hppy, an online blog sharing community for HR professionals. Here’s how each group contributes to the process:

  • Executive leadership is responsible for involving the entire C-suite in setting business direction and objectives, which will become a key part of the workforce planning process.
  • Finance function will provide key insights into the financial implications of a company’s talent management operations.
  • Functional, line and program managers can offer valuable workforce insights such as required skills, experience and performance that both current and future talent should meet.

Overcoming Analytic Challenges

Though many organizations recognize the significance of a more strategic, data-centric approach to talent management, the capabilities to connect data, uncover the insights, and deliver them in a timely manner are low. According to SAP contributor Susan Galer, the top three challenges HR faces with workplace analytics include:

  • Continued use of manual tools like spreadsheets and pulling and integrating data from disconnected systems;
  • Not possessing the proper knowledge and skills to interpret the data; and
  • Failing to understand the difference between reporting, workforce analytics and predictive analytics. Reporting aggregates numbers like headcount, number of separations and total compensation. Workforce analytics applies statistical techniques such as correlations, test of significance, factor analysis or multivariate analysis. Predictive analytics allow HR to model the impact of current and future HR practices on business results.

Understanding its Value

The objective of workplace planning and analytics is to gain insights everyone can use to make decisions that deliver better business results. According to Kargman, organizations that embrace this approach not only outperform their competitors with 79 percent higher Return on Equity (ROE), but they also have 12 percent greater talent outcomes; 30 percent higher stock returns than average; 2x greater mobility; 15x improvement in customer satisfaction; and are 2x as likely to improve leadership pipelines.

As you can see, leveraging strategic workplace planning and analytics can take you to the next level by offering invaluable, measureable insight into your healthcare organization. What are some of the latest practices you’ve seen to be successful? Please share! We’d like to hear your thoughts.

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