2018 Hot Topics and Talent Trends in the Healthcare IT Industry

December 7, 2017

By Mike Silverstein, Managing Partner of Healthcare IT and Life Sciences

What’s in store for 2018 when it comes to Healthcare IT issues and talent? Here are 7 hot topics and talent trends that will help to shape the workforce in the New Year:

Blockchain Innovation in Healthcare & Life Sciences. While Blockchain is not new to other industries such as finance or supply chain, technologists within healthcare now see it as a way to allow people to always have access to their healthcare records and have that data anchored, encrypted, and protected. This innovative technology is also helpful in streamlining processes, lowering operational costs, eliminating duplication of work and generating new ways to integrate in a sharing-based economy. In Life Sciences, Blockchain is also making inroads for clinical trials.

According to Deloitte, the healthcare industry is planning the most aggressive deployments of blockchain, with 35 percent of health and life sciences planning to deploy by 2018. Deloitte found that 28 percent of respondents across all industries said they’d already invested $5 million or more, while 10 percent have invested $10 million or more. Certified Blockchain Professionals will be in high-demand.

People Analytics Widely Adopted.
As more Millennials become managers, they are creating employee dashboards such as Microsoft’s MyAnalytics for employees to help them better understand how their time is being spent on daily tasks, in meetings, on projects, and to measure their progress towards achieving company goals and initiatives. Ultimately, people analytics is meant to help managers and executives make decisions about their workforce.

Hospitals Building Own Apps to Transform Personalized Care.
Precision medicine by creating apps is an emerging approach for disease treatment and prevention that takes into account individual variability in genes, environment, and lifestyle for each person. In other words, it’s personalized care. Hospitals such as Beth Israel Deaconess and Providence St. Joseph Health are building their own apps to transform the future of personalized care. As more hospitals build apps, HIT Programmers will be greater demand.

Cybersecurity Talent Wanted.
If you’re a data analyst or cybersecurity specialist, hospitals and other healthcare facilities are probably actively pursuing you. Healthcare hiring is picking up due to the lack of hospital security measures being taken. Data breaches of healthcare systems have increased by about 23 percent since 2015. Weak points including electronic medical record systems as well as the current adoption of wearable technology for patients and clients need to be addressed immediately. While the crisis in cybersecurity grows, so does the staffing need. According to the Journal of AHIMA, researchers found a significant spike in job postings demanding health IT data security certifications alongside the advanced informatics competencies and IT infrastructure skills required to manage health information in the modern digital environment.

Increased Demand for Telemedicine.
A recent report from Grand View Research, states that the telemedicine market is expected to top $113 billion by 2025, with a growth rate of 18 percent.  The increased demand for self-care and remote monitoring, are significant factors driving telehealth growth.  Plus, there will be financial benefits for providers who offer it.  Some new policy changes in Washington are opening big opportunities for hospitals and health systems to drive more revenue from virtual care.

This means that HIT professionals will play an even bigger role when it comes to developing telemedicine services. By helping to create the telehealth infrastructure, HIT professionals can help make telemedicine profitable and a permanent fixture in healthcare delivery. 

Candidate-Driven Job Market Continues.
For most industries across the US, we’re expecting the candidate-driven job market to continue and the Healthcare IT Industry is no exception. For HIT job seekers, this is great news. It means they have the power to be very selective regarding job opportunities and employers.  For employers, this means it’s high time to review your current talent acquisition strategies. Employers need to prioritize the way they source candidates, the experience those candidates have, and the offers they eventually make.

AI Represents Transformation in Healthcare.
The adoption of AI in healthcare is on the rise and solving a variety of challenges for patients, hospitals, and the overall healthcare industry.  With big data and technical capabilities, we’ve gotten to the point where new products will be created that begin to make a difference. Scientists will soon get the opportunity to prevent certain diseases, like cancer. With AI, we’re already seeing more intelligent prostheses and when AI is combined with robotics, they create personal healthcare assistants such as virtual nurses in smartphones and the ability to place a call for help in emergencies.

Across all industries including healthcare, AI is expected to create 2.3 million by 2020, according to a recent report from Gartner. Skills needed: knowledge of automation, robotics and the use of sophisticated computer software and programs. Candidates interested in pursuing jobs in this field require specific education based on foundations of math, technology, logic, and engineering. Written and verbal communication skills are also important to convey how AI tools and services are effectively employed within industry settings.

Mike Silverstein
Managing Partner of Healthcare IT and Life Sciences
440-996-0594
msilverstein@directrecruiters.com

What to Consider in a Labor Market Where Candidates Have the Upper-Hand

October 5, 2017

By Mike Silverstein, Managing Partner of Healthcare IT and Life Sciences

Value-based care, population health, telemedicine, cybersecurity and interoperability are just some of the topics taking priority in Healthcare IT professionals’ minds. More importantly, leaders in HIT organizations need to have the talent to support these types of Healthcare IT initiatives to drive innovation and strategy. Landing this talent has been challenging in a tight global labor market where candidates have options and the upper-hand. In a recent CEB Global Talent Monitor Report, global employee confidence in the economy reached 53.8%, the highest it has been in almost three years, and employees’ perceptions of job opportunities increased 1.2%. While employees are confident they could find a new job, this confidence increase has not translated to increased job seeking. Instead, employees are beginning to work harder and stay longer at their current jobs with a 4.5% increase in employees planning to stay with their current employer in North America.

This candidate-driven market paired with the need for workers with new and complex skills means hiring managers need to address what potential candidates are looking for in order to attract and retain the best talent. Here are four factors leaders and hiring managers need to take note of to land these job-confident individuals.

Respect
CEB Global Talent Monitor reported that employees are increasingly looking to be respected and treated fairly in the workplace. This is important to remember throughout the entire hiring and onboarding process. This includes respecting the candidates’ time throughout the interview process, then continuing to offer valuable feedback and constant communication throughout employment to ensure mutual expectations are met.

Compensation and Benefits
Money might not be everything, but it is a crucial piece in attracting talented individuals. With candidates having several options on the table, employers need to stay on top of salary and benefit information in the industry. Not only do employees expect to enter a job with a great compensation package, but they also expect competitive raises, bonuses and benefits such as paid time off, healthcare insurance and retirement savings.

Culture and Engagement
Company culture is a reflection of an organization’s values, mission and vision. Employers need to strive to create a strong work environment where employees feel that they belong and want to stay. Making sure employees are engaged at work and enjoy the culture can be a company’s strongest asset. Employers can attract new candidates to an exciting culture by showcasing it in their brand, website, social media and throughout the interview process.

Opportunity
Clear growth plans and upward mobility for employees to apply their skills and advance their careers in the company are extremely important. Managers and leadership teams need to be open, provide employees with training and development options, allow room for new ideas and be accessible to their teams. Candidates are looking to make a difference and feel a purpose in their job, so the freedom to take advantage of their strengths is crucial for employers to remember.

Attracting and retaining top talent is a challenge in every industry. By addressing the 4 factors mentioned above, hiring managers will have an edge on the competition in a candidate-driven market.

Contact Mike Silverstein:
440-996-0594
msilverstein@directrecruiters.com

Healthcare Software Executives Need to Build Personal Brands

July 5, 2016

Mike

By Mike Silverstein, Managing Partner of Healthcare IT & Life Sciences

Every business or organization has a brand. A brand is the way in which others identify the values of a company and how that company is perceived by its audience.  Branding is very strategic and calculated and the idea is to find unique ways to gain mindshare and positioning in the minds of customers and clients.  While it is commonplace for a business to put extensive amounts of time, money and energy into building its brand, personal branding is just as important for individual executives especially in an industry as dynamic as healthcare technology.

If you are a Healthcare IT Executive, your personal brand is everything you say and do on a day-to-day basis. This includes not just your actions but also your individual qualities and unique attributes including your passions, values, and goals.  If you think of the concept of your brand as a foundational element in your career, it can be a consistent motivator to build your network, meet new people, and create a presence both in person and online.  In other words, personal branding will position you in the marketplace as a logical choice for your next desired business partnership or career opportunity.

The question is how do you start building your brand or more importantly, start taking control and managing the brand you are already conveying to the market? Below are some thoughts on how to put some structure and methodology to your brand and how to manage the messaging you put out to your clients and industry colleagues:

Determine Your Target Market

What is your purpose for building your brand?  Whose attention do you want to catch?  It is important to have a clear view of who you want to target as your audience.  For example, you could be looking for a leadership position in a healthcare software company and will want to position yourself to appeal to potential employers, recruiters and investment firms within the industry.  This could differ completely from a professional who might be looking to sell a portfolio of solutions, find new clients and network with potential industry partners.  The key is first to define your audience and then figure out the best way to reach it.  Knowing which organizations you want to make an impression on will help you to determine what types of content you should be sharing, what events to attend, and key influencers you should connect with.

Building and Marketing Your Brand

Today there are many different channels to showcase your personal brand; particularly online.  Social media such as LinkedIn, Facebook, and Twitter, along with personal websites and blogs are all channels that can be used to promote your personal brand.  It is important to stay consistent across all platforms to make sure the same message is being received no matter how your audience is finding you.  Sharing relevant healthcare thought leadership content to start conversations and creatively managing your social media channels are ways to boost your personal branding efforts.

Aside from your online presence, other helpful ways to build your personal brand are what you do in person.  Depending on how you want to frame your brand, speaking opportunities, volunteer work, guest writing for industry publications, or presentations at workshops and conferences could be great for your brand.  Attending conferences and functions pertaining to the healthcare industry will not only give you more credibility, but also will help you to build and expand your network.

As you build your brand, remember these three rules for promoting yourself:

  1. Be consistent
    Make certain that messaging across all platforms carries your personal brand and voice in the same way, while not necessarily being the same content.
  1. Be creative
    Develop your profiles to have a look and feel that encompasses your personal brand.  In addition, think of unique ways to capture attention of any organization you are interested in.
  1. Be purposeful
    Always keep your end goal in mind while branding yourself as a talented Healthcare Industry Executive.  Everything you say or do contributes to your brand, so a helpful way to make sure you are being purposeful is to ‘Google’ your name to understand view how you are perceived by others.

Monitor and Maintain

The most important part about building your personal brand is making sure to effectively monitor and maintain it.  In business, marketers work around the clock to not only build the company’s brand, but also to get real-time feedback from the market in order to make adjustments and pivots as necessary. Similarly, your personal brand will benefit from the same diligence.  Continuously updating your online presence with relevant content, new industry connections and accomplishments in your field will help increase the level of engagement with your audience and position you appropriately for the next step in your career. Building industry relationships and staying in touch with those folks through relevant content is also paramount. Lastly, asking for others opinions about the messaging you are putting out there and always be receptive to feedback and new ideas will help you fine tune your presence and stay in front of the correct audience with the appropriate branding touches.

No matter what your goals are, you can effectively build your brand to help you achieve those goals.  What are you currently doing to showcase your personal brand?

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