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Is the Growing Skills Gap Causing Nurse Burnout?

May 4th, 2017 Comments off
Emotional stress of young doctor

The burgeoning skills gap in our nation is probably something you’ve heard a lot about. Employers across all industries are struggling to find the right talent to fill their open positions. Nursing, the backbone of U.S. health care, is not immune to this growing talent shortage – 56 percent of health care employers say they currently have open positions for which they cannot find qualified candidates, seven percentage points higher than any other industry surveyed.

Meanwhile, the number of nursing jobs is increasing at an accelerated rate. CareerBuilder’s analysis of the labor market shows the number of nursing jobs (RN and LPN) in the U.S. grew 6 percent from 2012 to 2016 to 3.5 million, and is expected to grow another 7 percent from 3.6 million in 2017 to 3.9 million in 2021.

Employers looking everywhere for the right talent
As nursing jobs increase, employers are struggling to find qualified talent to fill job vacancies. CareerBuilder research looked at the number of unique (or de-duplicated) nursing job postings in Q1 2017 and compared that to the total number of job postings for nurses – meaning how many times those unique job postings were posted on other sites – to find a stat called the posting intensity ratio. The higher the posting intensity ratio, the more effort employers are putting toward hiring.

In Q1 2017, the average number of unique job postings for registered nurses was 178,586, but the total number of job postings for registered nurses in that timeframe was 1,749,900 – a ratio of 10:1. That means every unique job listing for registered nurses was posted an average of ten times on different sites, signaling a highly competitive hiring environment where employers are using multiple touch points to try to reach potential job candidates.

Talent shortage may lead to burnout
This skills gap is leaving nurses currently on staff with larger workloads and longer hours. Day-to-day demands and high pressure situations have 7 in 10 nurses saying they feel burnt out in their current job, and 54 percent of nurses rating their stress level at work as high.

The effects of stress are real – nurses report feeling tired all the time (50 percent), experiencing sleepless nights (35 percent), weight gain (33 percent), high anxiety (32 percent), aches and pains (32 percent) and depression (19 percent).

Seventy-eight percent of nurses say their company does not offer classes or programs to help employees manage stress.

How you can combat nurse burnout and fill your skills gap

  • Build relationships with nurses in the community. In order to recruit nurses, merely posting jobs no longer cuts it. Employers need to build relationships with nurses in their communities. Creating a network of nursing talent will help you build your pipeline of candidates.
  • Recognize nurse burn out, and provide the right tools. Burned out nurses are causing harm not only to themselves – long-term high levels of stress can be a major detriment to one’s health – but they can also be putting their patients at risk. Make sure your nurses are getting the support they need by offering a flexible work environment, encouraging exercise, establishing an open door policy and offering mental health tools.
  • Focus on continued education. Talk to nurses about career ladders, and encourage them to take classes in areas they’d like to grow. Establish a mentorship program and encourage team members to seek each other out for advice. Encourage team bonding and the formation of solid, trusting relationships– colleagues are an important source of support at work.

For more advice on filling your nursing skills gap, check out these blog posts:

 

Over a Third of Workers Unsure How Much to Save for Retirement

April 3rd, 2017 Comments off
retirement survey

For many U.S. workers, retirement conjures up images of sunshine and travel. When it comes to planning for this chapter in life, however, many workers fall short. Over a third of workers ages 60 and older (34 percent) say they aren’t sure how much they’ll need to save in order to retire, according to a CareerBuilder survey. Also, employees aren’t always using the tools employers give them to start their savings: More than 1 in 4 workers age 55 and older (26 percent) do not participate in a 401(k), IRA or other retirement plan.

What Does This Mean for You?

Planning for retirement can be stressful for workers. Employers can help ease this stress by providing their employees guidance in this area. There are a variety of ways you can help your employees plan for a financially secure retirement, such as financial education and coaching to make sure employees know how much they need to save. Many employers simplify and automate the process of enrolling in retirement financial plans, to make it as easy as possible for employees to start saving. Many also give a company match to employees, to encourage them to save right away. It’s important to ensure your employees feel empowered with the tools they need to plan for their future.

38 Percent of Employers Have Increased Educational Requirements

March 20th, 2017 Comments off
educational requirements

Have you been thinking about increasing the educational requirements needed for jobs at your company?

If your answer is yes, you’re joined by over a third of today’s employers. According to a new CareerBuilder survey, 38 percent of hiring managers have increased educational requirements over the last five years. Thirty-three percent are hiring more workers with master’s degrees for positions that had been primarily held by those with four-year degrees, and 41 percent are hiring employees with college degrees for positions that had been primarily held by those with high-school degrees.

Why Raise Requirements?
Of the 2,605 hiring and human resource managers surveyed, those who increased educational requirements have noticed a positive effect across the board, in many critical areas:

  • Higher quality work: 61 percent
  • Productivity: 51 percent
  • Communication: 45 percent
  • Innovation/idea generation: 41 percent
  • Employee retention: 33 percent
  • Revenue: 26 percent
  • Customer loyalty: 24 percent

 

What Does This Mean For You?
Unsure about whether you should help your workforce reach these increased education requirements? About half of employers (51 percent) plan to provide more online, competency-based learning opportunities to their employees in 2017. Forty-one percent of employers are sending current employees back to school to get advanced degrees – with 14 percent fully funding the degree, and 22 percent funding it partially.

Investing in your employees’ education means investing in your business. Providing training to upskill current employees and helping employees go back to school to get their degree or certification can help improve your company’s bottom line.

Learn about inexpensive ways to fund employee training and education here.