6 Tips To Achieve Ideal Staffing Levels In Your Facility

Derek Jones, VP Enterprise Strategy, Americas at Deputy, gives tips on staffing strategies.

Staffing strategies are often mistaken with recruitment strategies. Yet, both are different. Recruitment is actually a subset of your staffing strategy.

Recruitment involves identifying and encouraging qualified candidates to apply for open positions. Staffing is about managing and retaining talent for optimal organization productivity. While recruitment is a 'one-off', staffing is an ongoing process.

In this article, we take a look at 6 tips to achieve ideal staffing in your facility.

1. Clearly define your business objectives

Achieving an ideal staffing level is directly linked to your organization's business goals. Depending on what you are trying to achieve, your ideal staffing level will vary.

For example, you may want to increase your revenue without offering more services. In such a scenario, you could possibly tweak your existing workforce to reach your goals.

By contrast, your goal may be to grow your business by tapping into new healthcare services. As such, you will very likely need to onboard new personnel that can deliver these new services.

Key takeaway: Your business objectives have a direct impact on your staffing levels. Clear goals make it easier to achieve ideal staffing levels.

2. Gauge your current workforce

Once you have your organization's objectives laid out, it's time to assess your workforce. You will need a comprehensive snapshot of your working environment and personnel.

Collect and gather accurate information about your workforce. This can include headcount, the number of services you offer, and skill gaps.

Moreover, you can take a step further by identifying your top and worst performers. This allows you to identify viable profiles for future leadership positions.

Key takeaway: You need accurate information about your workforce to make staffing decisions. Consolidate your data in a single report and avoid scattered info.

3. Track upcoming events and trends

Nobody likes unpleasant and unforeseen problems. Staying on top of all the information at hand is crucial to achieving optimal staffing levels.

For example, if an employee is departing soon, you must have a clear overview of the situation. Information about the date of departure and notice period must be readily available.

As such, this allows you to hire well in advance to avoid any business disruption. This minimizes the risk of knowledge loss when employees leave without completing a handover.

Key takeaway: Monitoring upcoming events helps you adjust your staffing plans. If you run multiple healthcare facilities, a staff scheduling app can be very useful.

4. Include your organization culture in your staffing strategy

Your organizational culture is a powerful tool that should be part of your arsenal. Your staffing strategy can benefit from a positive organizational culture.

While top-notch patient care should be the ultimate mission, a positive environment for your personnel is also crucial. In the long run, this can help you shun exorbitant staff turnover costs.

Consult your staff about their concerns and try to solve the most recurrent ones. An environment where people enjoy coming to work will help you attract and retain the best talent.

Key takeaway:Consider making employee wellbeing part of your organizational culture. Staff happiness directly impacts your long-term staffing strategy.

5. Develop a staffing forecast

Once you have a bird-eye view of your business goals and workforce, it is time to work on a forecast. It is a good idea to develop a five to ten-year staffing plan.

To complete this step, involve your management team, owners, or shareholders. Their long-term vision of your can help you plan for future restructures or acquisitions.

Additionally, incorporate succession planning into the projections as this involves new staffing requirements. This will also give you an insight into potential resource needs.

Key takeaway: Your staffing forecast must take into account your future business needs.

6. Review your plans periodically

Due to the rapid change in business needs, reviewing your plans is important. Periodically check your strategy to ensure your forecasts are still current.

For example, signing or terminating your single largest client has significant repercussions. This directly impacts your recruitment and operating margins.

While there is no ideal timeline to review your staffing plans, doing so every 6 months makes sense. Yet, if any major events happen, review your plans as soon as possible.

Key takeaway: Make sure that you can loosen and adapt to changing business conditions.

Off you go

Achieving ideal staffing levels for your healthcare facility is a sure way to get a competitive edge. Indeed, studies forecast there will on be a shortage of over 140,000 physicians by 2030 in the U.S. alone. The worst part is that this number does not include nursing assistants, nurse practitioners, and medical lab technicians.

Finding the sweet spot may be challenging, but achieving and maintaining an ideal staffing level can help counter the upcoming workforce shortages.

Derek Jones (VP Enterprise Strategy, Americas)

Derek spearheads key initiatives at Deputy, a global workforce management platform for employee scheduling, timesheets and communication. With a focus on Healthcare, Derek helps business owners and workforce leaders simplify employment law compliance, keep labor cost in line and build award-winning workplaces. Derek has over 16 years’ experience in delivering data-driven sales and marketing strategies to SaaS companies like MarketSource and Griswold Home Care.