Nurse and talent acquisition leaders know it’s challenging to hire permanent, experienced nurses. By 2022, the United States will have 1 million fewer nurses than needed, the national average time to hire a nurse 81 days, and the national nurse vacancy rate is at 9%, up one point in the past 12 months.
Given this context, it’s vital for hospitals to close permanent nurse candidates. According to Incredible Health’s proprietary hiring data, speed is critical—68% of nurses accept their first job offer, and 61% of nurses accept their first offer even if subsequent offers have higher pay.
Here are a few strategies successful hospitals use to increase nurse hiring speed and close more candidates:
1. Make nurse hiring speed an executive priority
Hiring nurses is inherently cross functional and change starts at the top. If CEOs, Chief Nurse Executives, and Chief HR Officers agree to prioritize hiring speed, their departments will follow. Have your teams measure and report on metrics, like recruiter response time, to incentivize speed.
2. Clear expectations for follow-ups, feedback, and offers
Clearly set expectations on how long responses, feedback, and offer decisions should take. This can go as far as setting service level agreements (SLAs) between teams. For example:
- Recruiters will follow up with every nurse applicant within 24 hours, either to schedule an interview or let them know it’s not a fit
- Hiring managers will log candidate feedback on the day of the interview
- If a hiring manager wants to extend an offer, they will let the recruiter know same day
- Recruiters will process and extend offers same day or next day
3. Automate low-skill recruiting work using tools like Incredible Health
Incredible Health automates low-skill recruiting work and helps hospitals hire permanent, experienced nurses in 20 days or less.
With Incredible Health’s marketplace technology, your recruiters get a weekly batch of pre-screened and experienced nurse candidates actively looking for new jobs and custom matched to your specific needs. Our algorithm custom matches each candidate across 45 specialties and 250 skills to find you the best fit. Incredible Health’s software auto-schedules interviews, so hiring nurses is even faster.
4. Regular prioritization check-ins between hiring managers and Recruiters
Schedule a weekly check in between Nurse leadership and the Recruiting team to update on shifting priorities. Ensure your teams communicate so Recruiters can focus on the highest impact roles, and have a clear understanding of specific needs.
Talent Acquisition teams should also educate Nurse hiring managers on the state of the talent market, ideally armed with data. The Incredible Health team provides data analytics reports, including benchmark data with local health system competitors, so teams can make more informed decisions.
5. Proactively block interview time on Recruiters’ and hiring managers’ calendars
Recruiters and nurse hiring managers are busy. Make sure they have time set aside each week for phone screens and interviews so candidates can move through the pipeline quickly.
6. Moving from one-on-one interviews to panel interviews
Instead of having several individual interviews over a week, your team may be able to do a single panel interview. For example, if you have several managers hiring in the same department, they may be able to interview candidates at the same time.
7. Continuous interviewing, even after a role has been filled
If a nurse accepts an offer, it’s time to celebrate. But it’s not necessarily time to close the job and tell hopeful candidates the position has been filled. For hard to hire nursing roles like ICU, ER, OR and even Med Surg, many hospitals continuously interview candidates, so they’re ready when the next role opens.
If you are interested in hiring nurses in 20 days or less, Incredible Health can help. Set up time with an expert to talk through your needs here.