Engaging Healthcare Employees Boosts Retention, Improves Patient Satisfaction

Posted on: April 9, 2019

Despite offering hiring bonuses, referral rewards, and benefits and perks, healthcare organizations still struggle to find and keep talented employees. Most hospitals report employee turnover is over 20 percent annually. That’s why healthcare employers are exploring many ideas to reverse the turnover trend. Here’s why engaging healthcare employees enhances reputation and improves patient satisfaction.

Increased productivity

Employee engagement is a problem that weighs heavy on the minds of healthcare leaders. Many would like a magic formula to get employees involved. But, engagement is developed by investing in employees and showing that they’re valued. Research shows that engaged employees outperform those that are not by 202 percent.

Employers should focus on developing a culture and meaningful work to capture the hearts and minds of their workers. When employees feel supported and appreciated, they are more satisfied with their jobs. Often they take less sick days and have fewer on-the-job accidents.

Decreased turnover costs

Currently, healthcare job opportunities are abundant, so employees can afford to be choosy and can leave for another opportunity that interests them.

Employee turnover can drain healthcare budgets. For example, a hospital with 3,000 employees earning 45,000 annually with 20 percent turnover could end up spending $27 million to hire new workers.

Healthcare organizations that invest in employee engagement will have less turnover, which means they can invest in other areas, such as offering better employee benefits and improving patient care.

Committed employees

Healthcare employers can increase their success in recruiting and retaining the best employees by offering benefits workers want.

The American Hospital Association reports that 47 percent of healthcare professionals with college loan debt are looking for jobs that include a student loan repayment benefit. Depending on the healthcare specialty, graduates often owe $30,000 to $200,000 in student loans. It can take years to pay off these debts. Many put off buying a home or starting a family because they cannot afford the expense.

That’s why employees and employers are interested in the financial benefit choices that BenefitEd offers. Employers can make payments to eligible employees’ student loans, help them set up a college 529 plan or other savings programs. These benefit choices go a long way in keeping employees engaged. In fact, one study found that employees with student loan debt would stay with an employer offering repayment help for at least five years.

Enhanced patient care

Engaged healthcare employees are happier and more likely to go the extra mile to provide patients with quality care. Research shows that 85 percent of engaged employees showed a caring attitude compared to only 38 percent for disengaged works. And when patients are pleased with their care, they communicate their preferences to others. Hospitals identified in the top 25 percent for employee engagement also score within the top 19 percent of highest ranking hospitals, reports the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid.

Recognized employer of choice

Employees who are happy with their benefits and work experience are more likely to recommend their employer to others. These employees also are more engaged. One study showed that highly engaged employees are emotionally committed and can boost business performance by as much as 30 percent.

Engaged employees are loyal and willing to take on leadership roles to contribute to their employers’ success. And they seek to create a supportive work culture for other employees. The positive attitude of employees will be noticeable to patients, families, and prospective workers, which will boost the healthcare organization’s reputation as an employer of choice.