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Think back over your year. Did your retention strategy help you hold onto your top employees?  Or is there more you could do to push retention above and beyond in the new year? 

For most healthcare employers, turnover is a struggle year after year. In fact, the issue is growing, and getting more expensive. Just think about the cost of covering vacancies with temporary workers. Kaufman Hall reports that in 2019, contract spend made up just 2% of hospitals and healthcare systems’ total labor costs. Now, that number’s up to 11%. Turnover’s on the rise, and so is the cost of replacing workers. But that doesn’t mean turnover is impossible to address. 

Typically, the highest turnover happens in the first couple of months of the year. To help you get through this period, we offer four new initiatives to jumpstart your retention strategy in 2023. 

1. Implement Flexible Schedules 

Flexible schedules are an enormous draw for candidates and an excellent reason for your employees to stay. 

If you’ve been considering flexible scheduling, you aren’t alone—83% of businesses already have flexible options. 

In addition to boosting your retention strategy, flexible scheduling can also help your bottom line. According to a Gartner survey, 43% of respondents believe that flexibility at work helps them be more productive. 

Types of Flexible Scheduling

  • Alternative scheduling. This can include shorter shifts, staggered start and end times, and shorter work weeks. 
  • Float pools. A group of registered nurses hired to fill vacancies, often on short notice. For those who enjoy flexibility and don’t mind a certain level of unpredictability. 
  • Job sharing. When two or more people split the responsibilities of a single full-time position. This is a great option for facilities that find themselves with more part-time candidates than full-time. 
  • Work from home. While most nursing positions have to be largely in-person, there are still work-from-home options. Telehealth nurses can do some or all of their jobs from home, and even in-person nurses may be able to perform some administrative duties remotely. 

Learn more about flexible schedules 

2. Bolster Your Employee Referral Program

If you weren’t satisfied with your retention strategy in 2022, consider putting more effort into employee referrals. An employee referral program is a recruiting tactic, but it can double as a worker benefit: staff who refers qualified candidates can enjoy rewards like bonuses, local event tickets, or extra time off. 

According to LinkedIn, employees hired through referrals stay at a company longer than those hired in other ways. Since these candidates tend to integrate more easily into their new workforce, they’re less likely to quit in early months.

To ensure that your employee referral program is effective, combine a user-friendly platform with strong internal marketing. Your employee referral program won’t bear returns if your staff isn’t reminded about it. 

Learn how to implement employee referrals in healthcare


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3. Invest in On-site Childcare 

A sizable 83% of millennials say they’d change employers for family-friendly benefits. In fact, research from Harvard Business School shows that half of employees between the ages of 26 and 35 have quit a job due to changing responsibilities as a caregiver. 

It’s clear that working parents and caregivers don’t always feel supported. You can stand out in a major way by providing on-site childcare, or other childcare options, to employees. 

Learn how to set up a daycare center for healthcare employees

4. Reimburse Tuition

Reimbursing tuition has become a popular retention strategy. Employers who offer tuition reimbursement or tuition assistance pay for some or all of an employee’s educational costs. 

There are many ways to approach tuition reimbursement. Some employers fund degrees related to an employee’s work, while others offer stipends for employees who are enrolled in continuing education. Still other employers will even fund a candidate’s entire degree program, in exchange for a contracted period of employment. 

Learn how to set up a tuition reimbursement program for nurses

Refine Your Retention Strategy With Apploi

Creating an effective healthcare retention strategy can be challenging. But decreasing turnover doesn’t have to be an uphill battle. With the right tools on your side, you can seamlessly integrate both hiring and retention. 

Interested in learning more about how you can recruit, hire, and onboard healthcare staff quickly? Contact us today for a free demo of our end-to-end talent management solution.

Melanie Boroosan

Over her six years in healthcare administration, Melanie has managed human resources, legal, compliance, payroll, and recruitment efforts at a corporate level. This oversight granted her a deep appreciation for the unique needs of healthcare managers, and for the direct ways that business operations affect the wellbeing of each employee. As Apploi’s Director of Healthcare Innovation, Melanie draws from her experience in healthcare HR and ancillary long-term care to pursue a vision of holistic healthcare staffing. Her work is rooted in the knowledge that great care begins with improving quality of life for all healthcare workers.