Ways to reduce turnover among overburdened front-line nurses: staffing technology and local per diem pools

When it comes to nursing staff, healthcare organizations are experiencing a perfect storm.

Baby Boomer nurses have accelerated their retirement plans post-pandemic. Meanwhile, a shortage of nursing school faculty members means the supply of new nurses is limited. Nurses of all ages are seeking more work-life balance, flexibility and control over their schedules. 

During a December Becker's Hospital Review webinar sponsored by CareRev, three healthcare experts discussed how hospitals and health systems can leverage technology to build a local per diem nursing pool and reduce employee burnout. The panelists were: 

  • Jennifer D'Angelo, Senior Vice President, General Manager and Information Security Officer, New Jersey Innovation Institute Healthcare Division
  • Amanda Duke, Chief Growth Officer, CareRev
  • Deborah Visconi, President and Chief Executive Officer, Bergen New Bridge Medical Center in Paramus, N.J.

Five key takeaways were: 

1. Nurses want to choose when, where and how they work. Healthcare leaders must pay attention to the voices of front-line staff. "We're thinking outside the box and providing flexible work schedules," Ms. Visconi said. "We recently partnered with CareRev to deploy a technology platform that allows us to create a talent pool right in our community." Bergen New Bridge Medical Center posts shifts on the CareRev app and then nurses pick up the shifts that interest them. The solution delivers the flexible work schedules people are looking for. 

2. Healthcare organizations can use staffing technology to reduce burnout and improve employee satisfaction. Hospitals and health systems need a comprehensive technology solution that incorporates both AI and machine learning to manage internal and external staff in a holistic manner. "Organizations need a one-stop, single-source platform that includes predictive scheduling and embedded rate tools. This is CareRev's roadmap," Ms. Duke said. "I think owning the pathway for nurses to take control of their schedules is a huge satisfier. CareRev is based on convenience and how people want to work," Ms. D'Angelo said. 

3. Employee satisfaction leads to patient satisfaction. Engagement across the whole talent pool increases when people are excited about the work they're doing and the shifts they're working. "The ideal scenario is having satisfied staff who are dedicated to your team full-time or part-time, and supplementing them with a pool of resources from CareRev who are happy because they can select the shifts they want to work. This leads to positive feedback on customer experience surveys, since engagement with clinical and direct patient care affects patient satisfaction," Ms. D'Angelo said. 

4. Recruitment and retention strategies focused on local nursing talent will help resolve the staffing crisis. Bergen New Bridge Medical Center is a community asset, so connecting to the community via the workforce is an exciting prospect for the organization. "CareRev is a perfect solution for our staffing issues," Ms. Visconi said. "The platform enables us to recruit and retain the workforce we need, while giving nurses the respectful and compassionate environment they deserve." 

CareRev has generated a great sense of relief among employees. "They are getting help with the workload and the people we bring in are highly credentialed and skilled. They are known to us because they live in our communities. Everyone feels really good about this solution," Ms. Visconi said. 

5. Successful staffing technology deployments require clear communication and internal alignment. Transparent communication with providers is essential when implementing innovative staffing solutions. "You must show how the solution links to the organization's purpose and fits into the bigger picture," Ms. Visconi said. It's also critical for organizations to reach agreement about "build or buy" decisions. 

"We have a critical staffing shortage in healthcare right now," Ms. Duke said. "Building solutions in-house can be complicated, clunky and time-consuming." CareRev is ready to go and it has a very clear return on investment. The streamlined, Joint Commission-certified platform includes credentialing and provisioning. "Our on-demand solution delivers cost savings and immediate access to the local credentialed workforce," Ms. Duke said. 

Given the current staffing crisis, hospitals and health systems must find creative ways for nurses to function at the top of their license. Technology solutions like CareRev can help. "The ability to connect with front-line caregivers is so important," Ms. Visconi said. My leadership team is listening and finding solutions to make the work environment easier and more efficient. The magic happens when we put innovation together with frontline care providers." 


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