For most of us, it’s hard to feel personally invested or dedicated to a job if you don’t feel valued by your employer. Thus, it should come as no surprise that those who feel undervalued are more likely to leave their companies. Of course, turnover has negative effects across sectors, but in an industry like healthcare, where employee churn can negatively impact patient care, it is especially problematic.
Unfortunately, the healthcare sector is grappling with this issue currently. Keep Financial recently surveyed nearly 300 healthcare professionals and found that only 54% feel valued. At the same time, 41% are considering leaving their roles. When asked why they were considering leaving, the question of value again popped up, with almost half (49%) feeling undervalued.
And we’re not alone in this finding – other industry reports reveal the same trend. A recent survey from ConnectRN, a healthcare staffing platform, showed that half of nurses polled have considered leaving the field completely, citing factors including a lack of appreciation and respect for their role.
The question is, what can be done to address this trend? What would help healthcare workers feel more valued, and what would encourage them to stay in their positions longer?
Our recent survey included some questions to help get to the bottom of this issue. Interestingly, 85% of respondents said they would accept an upfront cash bonus (beyond existing compensation) in exchange for agreeing to stay with a company for a specified period of time. This suggests that an upfront lump sum of cash could help negate employees’ desires to leave their position, which helps increase tenure and reduce resignations. What’s the reason for this? Upfront cash delivers undisputed value.
By giving workers an immediate lump sum of cash, employers make it crystal clear how much they value the employee and want them to stay with the company, which improves morale. Additionally, with no spending stipulations, each employee can apply a bonus to their lives in a way that delivers personalized value. When asked how they would use an upfront cash bonus, 39% said they would pay off debt, 38% said they’d save for retirement, 27% would invest, and 24% would create an emergency fund. While these answers vary, the underlying theme is that they can all make a noticeable difference in someone’s life.
Escaping from the shackles of debt or being able to start a retirement fund helps deliver financial peace of mind, which can lift a tremendous burden and help individuals feel safer and more secure in their various life situations. Employers who can provide that peace of mind for their employees are delivering real, tangible value to each individual and demonstrating how much the company values them as employees.
A Winning Situation for All
Of course, the employees aren’t the only ones to benefit from this arrangement. According to our survey, 85% of respondents would stay with a company in exchange for a vesting bonus (paid today, earned over time). Clearly, when value is felt, loyalty follows. This carries a tremendous benefit for healthcare employers, for a few key reasons.
First, recruiting in the healthcare space has always been challenging and can take significant amounts of time. A survey from AI-tech company AKASA suggested that recruiting mid-level healthcare employees can take approximately five months and cost on average $3,581. Additionally, recent increases in healthcare resignations have had a noticeable impact on patient care. One out of every four Americans has been impacted by the healthcare shortage and 68% encountered delays in receiving care during the second half of 2022, according to U.S. News & World Report. Of course, the main way to curb these trends is to increase tenure, and the only way to do that is to focus on improving employee satisfaction and loyalty.
Value can be delivered and felt in a variety of ways. Since no two employees are the same, the way in which each individual measures value will naturally vary. Without a doubt, healthcare providers can take a number of steps to build loyalty across their staff, but no matter the approach, the most important thing is that they listen to their employees and work to ensure that each is feeling valued and appreciated in their role.