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2016 Healthcare Staffing Predictions

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Young business man using laptop and look to 2016 year text with blue sky and cloud and cityscape in the background, asian

Last year was a year like no other! The explosive increase in healthcare jobs was due to the large expansion in the healthcare industry. Virtually all components of healthcare are growing.

Now, let’s take our best educated guess as to what’s to come in the upcoming year. As predicted by our industry insight leaders.

Kristine Mitchell Vice President Client Services

1. Contingent labor usage will compress in the first half of the year 

Due to the rapid acceleration at the end of 2015, organizations reviewing budgets will take pause and reign in approvals for contingent labor at the beginning of 2016.

2. Fill rates will continue to struggle in specialty areas

With the rebound in the economy, more money are retiring or more apt to switch to part time work. This will highlight the shortage, particularly in nursing, and highly trained specialty areas.

3.The total percentage of extensions will increase

Reduction in new contractor approvals will increase extensions of current contractors. Plus, if organizations find those tough-to-fill positions, they will be more inclined to hold on to them for some extra time. Also, it’s an El Nino year, and people don’t like to move around much in challenging weather. Might sound crazy, but it’s true.

Amanda Walrath Director of Client Services

4. Increased interest in integrations and consolidating systems

Hospitals are looking at ways they can limit the number of systems to pull data out of and have logins and want to invest in more single sign on solutions as well as minimize the headcount it requires to pull and manipulate reports. Also, many healthcare systems have experienced significant growth in the utilization of agency staff. In order to help with their predictive modeling solutions to optimize productivity, they need daily insight into not only their FTE productivity but also their contingent staff productivity. This requires a direct feed between systems so they can receive real time reports.

5. Optimize in house labor pools

More and more customers are requiring ad hoc reports and guidance as to how to contain their contingent labor cost. Many are looking into trends on where they are using labor, their FTE resources and identifying areas where they can optimize their FTE’s over going out to outside agency.

Jason Drucker President

6. Overall demand for contingent labor will remain at historically high levels but remain relatively flat year over year compared to 2015

2015 (and the latter part of 2014) was an explosion that is unlikely to repeat in 2016. Millions of newly covered individuals entered the healthcare market through the Affordable Care Act, driving up demand. As that flattens and as health systems get a better handle on meeting the demand, the need for contingent labor is likely to flatten, but still remain at high levels.

7. Market penetration of workforce solutions will accelerate

The rapid rise in demand has left health systems looking for partnerships that help them ease the burden of finding in demand talent. As larger, earlier adopters engage in successful partnerships, it signals confidence to the rest of the market, accelerating adoption.

8. Total demand for healthcare professionals will increase more than expected

A 2015 report released by Staffing Industry Analysts estimated healthcare staffing to grow in 2016 by 6%. By the end of the year, I expect we’ll see that overall growth of the segment surpasses expectations.

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