HIM Connections is an expert recruitment and staffing solutions firm headquartered in Birmingham, Alabama. Since 2002, HIM Connections has been connecting job seekers and employers. HIM Connections provides services throughout the United States specializing in Health Information Management (HIM) and Health Information Technology (HIT).
According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, the need for qualified healthcare workers in different sectors will increase by 19 percent by 2024. There are already 18.9 million individuals employed in the healthcare field, which is almost four million more than in 2005.
This increase in the need for healthcare workers outpaces all other professions. For healthcare organizations, this means attracting the best candidates is more important than ever. For job candidates, standing out against the competition should be your number one focus.
No matter your goal, we are here to help build your brand image!
I’m a job seeker. Why should brand image matter to me?
Projecting your personal brand will help you stand out from other job candidates.
Brand image is what people see of you visually, including the way you talk, walk and dress. Equally important, personal brand reflects an individual’s strengths, passions, values, skills and ability to communicate.
To create a successful personal brand, you need to identify the qualities that are authentically you. Have a clear understanding of your goals, your vision and purpose. This may seem hard at first, but trust that having these nailed down makes your job search, and even interviews, so much easier to navigate.
I’m a hiring manager. Why should brand image matter to me?
According to a LinkedIn report, the number one obstacle candidates experience when searching for a job is not knowing what it’s like to work at an organization.
Your company brand image serves as a first impression. It helps candidates gain insight into what it would be like to work for your company. For instance, organizations with a clean, easy-to-use website and polished brand image showcase how put-together they are before ever speaking to a job candidate. A professional brand image shows that you know how to run your business. The opposite might be perceived as chaos.
Your company brand image also builds credibility and loyalty. The more often you can deliver on your mission or vision with a strong brand image, the easier it will be for candidates to remember your brand and what it stands for.
At HIM Connections we want our brand to stand for quality recruitment and staffing services and we want these services to be delivered with honesty, integrity, respect, excellence and servant leadership (our core values). Having a team that understands the company’s core values is key. We work hard to ensure our employees deliver the brand image we have created over the years. Quality services are at the heart of our company and our core values are the fundamental beliefs we turn to when making decisions and working with candidates and clients each day.
How Job Candidates Can Craft a Personal Brand Image
Identify personality traits that make you, uniquely you. If you’re unsure, the best way is to ask others—your family, close friends or colleagues. They will usually be able to tell. The next step is to strengthen and perfect the good traits and work to improve on the not-so-good traits.
Be yourself. Do not attempt to be anyone else. Authenticity will shine through while a fake persona will make you appear untrustworthy. Focus on your uniqueness and be a standout in that area.
Work on yourself. Read and become as knowledgeable as possible in your area of uniqueness. Then, impart that knowledge. People love getting tips and ideas, especially from those they admire.
Dedicate time to exploring your goals, strengths and skills. This helps save time when searching potential employers and helps you determine your best fit.
How Hiring Managers Can Improve a Company Brand Image
Make Social Media Your Friend Healthcare isn’t notorious for glamorous campaigns or creative recruiting techniques. But technology, and specifically social media, can be an excellent tool to attract job candidates.
A Huffington Post article mentions the importance of using social media to clearly communicate a corporate brand. “While social media is obviously a great avenue for finding the top talent you need, it is also an equally useful means for establishing, maintaining and promoting a company’s brand identity. These obvious benefits cannot be overlooked.”
Personalize the Hiring Process With a compelling job description and a clearly stated employee value proposition, you have a much better chance of attracting the right talent. According to Forbes, personalizing the entire process is the key to retaining the attention of prospective employees. To market your company as one where employees want to work, communicate with candidates using the same level of personalization that you use in targeted marketing campaigns.
Another tip is to reach out to previous employees who left on good terms. Figure out why they left. Was it a better opportunity or more money? Determining why people left can help improve brand image, not to mention save you time and money in hiring and training costs in the future.
In today’s competitive healthcare job market, the importance of brand image for individuals and organizations cannot be overlooked. We hope you find these tips useful. Please share additional pointers that you believe are successful.
NOTE: HIM Connections is proud to announce the addition of clinical recruitment to our service offering! As part of this new service line, we will add healthcare-related blog topics to our traditional HIM blog posts.
Agnes L., a part-time California-based RN for more than 15 years, likes to completely disconnect when she leaves her neonatal intensive care unit (NICU) nursing job each day. Agnes faces emotional and mental demands as an NICU nurse. For days when trauma is involved, rest is what gets her recharged for her next shift. Naturally, Agnes likes to set work aside when she’s not at the hospital. Other than continuing education credits, she isn’t involved in her state nursing association.
Agnes is not alone. Most people want to go home and decompress after a long day at the office and this is no different for nurses. From beginning to end of each shift and everywhere in between, patient demands are constant. Even on slow days, being in charge of someone’s physical and mental well-being is nothing to be taken lightly. When nurses leave work, they really want to leave work. That often means no after-hours events or networking obligations, just some R&R until they have to be completely focused again.
Many nurses do not participate in their local or national nursing associations for a number of reasons. Burnout is a contributor, along with a lack of understanding of true membership benefits. Sometimes nurses don’t get involved because of a cost misperception. Nurses who work part time like Agnes, or who are nearing retirement, may not see immediate value from association benefits.
Regardless of the reason, choosing not to join a nursing association can be a mistake for nurses who are beginning their careers, or for nurses who are experienced but seeking a change. If you want to find a new nursing job, networking is the best approach.
This blog covers five reasons to join a nursing association. For nurses looking to grow personally and professionally, consider this list of benefits.
Networking events hosted by nursing associations are an excellent way to meet like-minded people. These venues provide an opportunity to be in the same room with people who have similar interests, but without patient distractions or code blues to worry about. Not sure what’s in your area? The Nursing Network lets you search for events by location or keyword on its website. Also, networking articles for nurses are a source for great tips. You never know what’s in your area.
Cost of Membership
Membership fees are relatively low compared to those in other industries. When you join, the costs are dispersed down to the state level so members receive benefits and resources from their state and national associations. In Alabama, a Registered Nurse (RN) can join the Alabama State Nurses Association (ASNA) and American Nurses Association (ANA) for only $15 per month. State association benefits vary but usually give members access to additional services and resources that are valuable to continued professional development. Click here for an overview of the ASNA/ANA member benefits.
Memberships offer access to tools that often are unavailable to the public. Examples include the American Nurses Association (ANA) professional nursing journal, American Nurse Today. Regional nursing newsletters are often available on a quarterly or monthly basis. There are also online communications that keep nurses informed about their profession and raise awareness about opportunities to engage and volunteer with the association. Finally, ANA members pursuing higher education may also use association resources for assistance with research projects as a benefit of membership. Non-members have to pay for this service.
Aside from a standard job board, ANA gives members premier access to new job opportunities. Early notifications can make a big difference for highly competitive positions or desirable areas in the country.
Along the same vein as resources, associations help you stay up to date on what’s new, including hospitals doing progressive things, new or emerging nursing specialties and nursing trends on the horizon. Expanding your knowledge beyond your hospital’s walls can be a great asset when it’s time for a career shift.
Not sure where to start your search for a nursing association?
Take some time to check out the American Nurses Association and this helpful link for new nursing grads. From here, you can easily locate your state chapter to find details about the benefits listed above. Please note that HIM Connections is not affiliated with any associations listed.
Are you a member of a local or national association? Please leave a comment to share your experience. Insights are always welcome!
In recent years, the healthcare industry has seen the development of a widespread workforce shortage. While the lack of nurses and physicians is not new, the industry does face new challenges. The number of people without health insurance has spiked, leading to a jump in the number of people making hospital visits. This issue coupled with medical needs of the aging baby boomer population could spell problems for hospitals if staffing shortages are not addressed in the near future.
Further, competition for top-performing clinicians is higher than ever—so much so that demand for physicians has exceeded the supply. In this job market, healthcare organizations must practice recruitment marketing aimed at catching the interest of the most talented individuals.
This blog covers three key elements of recruitment marketing, tailored for the healthcare industry. For hospitals looking to hire, the following guidelines can boost opportunities to offer the best positions to candidates.
1. Competitive Compensation
Employers who sign the biggest check typically sign the best talent. That’s the hard truth of every industry. Unfortunately for hospitals with a tighter budget, the inability to match a competitor’s pay often results in the loss of prospective hires to competition. To increase competitiveness in the job market, hospitals without the means to match competing organizations’ pay need to advertise their non-monetary benefits. Opportunities for career growth, work schedule flexibility, savings plans, unique work environment and educational opportunities are benefits that could win over a candidate from a higher paying offer.
2. Simple Screening System
In this day and age, people want instant gratification in all aspects of their lives, including the job search. With healthcare workers in high demand, candidates are often considering multiple job opportunities at the same time. Organizations with a long, drawn out hiring process can experience a high number of applicant drop-offs, missing out on qualified candidates. At HIM Connections, we work closely with our clients to keep candidates informed of where things are in the interview process to help avoid this from happening. We also assist with employment screenings, license verification and other onboarding requirements when needed. If you are not working with a recruiting partner you might consider implementing a tracking system or similar technology for a more streamlined solution for your organization.
3. Candidate Relationship Management
Forming and maintaining relationships with candidates, even those who aren’t eventually hired, is essential. Potential employers should establish this relationship early in the hiring process to convey their brand image to potential hires. An organization’s brand image may provide an edge over the competition. Even if a candidate declines a job offer after making it through the hiring process, sustaining the relationship is important. Former hiring candidates can often provide leads to equally qualified individuals seeking employment, adding to a hospital’s job candidate pipeline.
Staying current on shifting job trends, respecting generational divides and matching applicants based on company culture are just a few ways to maintain positive relationships with job candidates. Hiring managers are facing a new paradigm, and must use each resource at their disposal to the fullest. HIM Connections works closely with clients to not only gain an understanding of the job requirements, but also the company culture, because we know this is often just as important as experience.
While it is important for hospitals to effectively market for recruitment and hire new staff in today’s competitive market, being meticulous in the selection of candidates is critical. Lowering hiring standards to fill vacant positions poses a threat to healthcare providers, as subpar clinicians can cause quality of patient care to plummet and bring revenue loss via the cost of re-hiring.
Use these tips to help your organization recruit the most potential and best hires possible.
Do you have a hiring story to share? Tell us in the comments below.