Category Archives: contingent staffing

Use of Temporary Nurses a Cost-Effective Staffing Solution for Hospitals

It’s a question long in need of an answer. Is the use of temporary nurses a cost-effective staffing solution for hospitals looking for ways to optimize their human resources and ultimately, quality of care? The University of Rochester, School of Nursing, took on the question and analyzed the cost-effectiveness of agency-employed supplemental nurses in 19 adult patient-care units of a large, academic medical center.

As might be expected, the results were mixed depending on the volume of supplemental nurses needed to optimize staffing. Minimal use of temporary nurses resulted in slightly lower overall costs when compared to permanent nurse overtime costs. Moderate use of supplemental nursing resulted in slightly higher overall costs and heavy use demonstrated significantly higher costs. The final conclusion of the study is that minimal to moderate use of temporary and travel nurses, cost about the same as permanent nurses working overtime.

Researcher Linda Aiken, Center for Health Outcomes and Policy Research, University Pennsylvania explains, “In addition to not being cost-effective, overtime hours performed by permanent nurses may equate to poor nurse and patient satisfaction. Extensive research indicates that overtime work is connected to nurse burnout, turnover, and poor patient outcomes. The use of supplemental nurses can alleviate these risks.”

75% of Hospitals use Temporary Nurses

With more than half of U.S. hospitals using temporary and travel nurses to alleviate staff shortages, it’s important to understand their effectiveness. In addition to cost-effectiveness, a study reported in the March 2015 edition of Journal of Nursing Administration suggests that the use of temporary nurses has no impact on patient satisfaction either positive or negative. This may be due to further evidence that supplemental nurses have equivalent educational qualifications as most permanent nurses which is a contributing factor to positive patient outcomes.

As a result of these studies, the key to optimizing hospital nursing staff is to have sufficient permanent personnel to manage core patient load and to add temporary or travel nurses to shore up short-term deficits. Of course, this objective is easier to say than to put into practice. Every hospital experiences fluctuations in patient census, employee resignations, increases in patient acuity, and temporary leave of absences leaving some to ask, “How can we optimize healthcare staffing with all of these variables in play?”

One way is to implement a workforce management system that provides executive oversight into your contingent workforce. Cloud-based vendor management software provides a centralized solution to source, recruit, procure and manage contingent and direct hire needs. The StayStaffed VMS is free to use and connects hiring managers to a nationwide database of healthcare professionals and staffing agencies. Through dashboard analytics, users gain critical oversight of their healthcare staffing. Contact us today for 30 minute demonstration on how Stay Staffed Candidate Direct can optimize your healthcare staffing.

Cost Outcomes of Supplemental Nurse Staffing in a Large Medical Center
Journal of Nursing Administration March 2015 – Patient Outcomes
75% of Hospitals use Temporary Nurses

Date posted: April 20, 2015 in contingent staffing | Healthcare Industry | Staffing News | Staffing Solution | supplemental nurses | Temporary Nurses |

2014 Tech Trends that Help Streamline Healthcare Services

Each year sees an ongoing commitment to utilizing technology for healthcare professionals and patients. Bring your own device (BYOD), mobile apps, big data, telemedicine, vendor management software (VMS), and data security are some of the hot healthcare technology trends for 2014. Continuous improvement with these tech trends is critical to streamlining patient care and the flow of patient information throughout the healthcare system.

Here is what healthcare providers can look forward to as the year progresses:

Bring Your Own Device – We live in an increasingly wired world and the healthcare industry is no different. Many healthcare workers already bring their own devices to work so it makes sense for healthcare providers to capitalize on the phenomena. Using a multitude of devices within the workplace however, offers an additional burden for IT staff in the form of supporting infrastructure, security, and compliance.

Mobile Applications – Many medical apps are available to healthcare personnel as well as patients and the choices are growing rapidly. Medical professionals can quickly access electronic health records (EHR) to aid in clinical decision-making. Patients can actually use the apps to monitor their own health issues such as measuring heart rate or counting calories. Adherence apps will remind patients of their medication time through their smart phone. As health systems get more deeply involved in developing their own apps, the patient experience will improve and hospital efficiencies will increase.

Big Data – Having access to stored data allows healthcare professionals to gain important insight into accelerating patient care. Relevant medical data from Electronic Health Records (EHR) can be complemented by outside apps that capture the critical information needed to enhance efficiency. Patients can access their own information from devices at most any location. For medical professionals, tablets can be used in the consultation room and fed into the external terminals available in each department. With Electronic Health Record systems becoming more affordable, information is exchanged more easily and securely.

Telemedicine – Those that have difficulty getting to their medical facility can take advantage of inexpensive telemedicine technology. Patients can communicate with their healthcare professionals through video conferencing on mobile devices or laptops that are equipped with a webcam. Virtual care is becoming more popular with features that allow patients to self-monitor their vital signs and report their statistics without having to see a healthcare professional.

Vendor Management Software (VMS) – An ongoing workforce shortage combined with healthcare reform is making it difficult for medical providers to manage their medical staff efficiently. Vendor management software is ideal for healthcare providers looking to improve their recruitment and staffing management processes.

Data Security – The Health Insurance Portability and Accounting Act (HIPAA) oversees patient confidentiality but is still a work in progress. As IT increases its role in health administration, security through encryption protects personal health information.  Advancements include secure portals for email, texts, file sharing and video-conferencing. Still, there is more work to be done to keep up with new innovations so that applications can run smoothly, securely, and without failure.

These trends will continue to advance throughout 2014 and beyond with the intention of creating a leaner healthcare experience for hospitals and patients alike.

StayStaffed’s Vendor Management System in conjunction with the Candidate Direct Marketplace ® provides a management-oversight technology solution to streamline and automate the administrative and operational processes that occur within multi-vendor staffing environments. Our secure, web-based VMS software provides a one-source solution to source, recruit, procure and manage contingent and direct hire needs for a multitude of industries — including healthcare, energy, and IT to name a few…and with the potential to save up to 15% of annual contingent staffing spend.

Date posted: April 8, 2014 in contingent staffing | Healthcare Industry | Information Technology | Staffing News | vendor management systems | workforce management | big data | Data Security | medical apps | multi-vendor staffing | Tech Trends | telemedicine | VMS |

Will 2014 Temporary Job Gains Beat the Lofty Increases of 2013?

Temporary job increases ended the year 2013 on a high note adding 40,400 new jobs in December – the highest monthly increase of the year. Temporary jobs contributed 8.8 percent of total job growth over 2013 even though the sector only accounts for 1.8 percent of all jobs nationwide, according to the BLS.

Continued Growth in Temporary Jobs in 2014

Continued growth of temporary hiring shows no sign of slowing down in 2014. In fact, several prognosticators predict high growth rates for contract jobs in various industries throughout 2014. A recent Business Insider article reported on a recent survey that, “Forty-two percent of employers plan to hire temporary or contract workers in 2014, up from 40 percent last year. Of these employers, 43 percent plan to transition some temporary employees into full-time, permanent members of their staff.”

The Palmer Forecast by G. Palmer & Associates forecasts an 8.5% increase in temporary employment in the first quarter of 2014 over the same period last year marking the 16th consecutive quarter (4 years) of year-over-year increases.

The Boston Consulting Group predicts that “higher exports and re-shoring would add 2.5 million to 5 million manufacturing and related services jobs by 2020.” A recent study of U.S. manufacturers estimates that 83 percent are experiencing a skilled workforce shortage with nearly 600,000 high-skill manufacturing jobs currently vacant. Research by the Society of Human Resource Management (SHRM) confirms that due to regional skill shortages, manufacturers are hiring and developing temporary workers to fill the gaps.

Increased Use of VMS and MSP Hiring Solutions

Hiring companies and staffing agencies are increasingly turning to Vendor Management Software (VMS) and Managed Service Provider (MSP) solutions to more efficiently manage contingent workforces. A survey by Staffing Industry Analysts (SIA) reported that more than 50 percent of respondents were using a VMS or MSP solution to:

  • Speed up the hiring process
  • Lower hiring costs
  • Decrease administrative workload
  • Receive enhanced reporting capabilities
  • Achieve improved management oversight
  • Increase their candidate pool

According to the SIA, VMS and MSP spend under management was $100 billion in 2012, a $16 billion increase from 2010.

With more than 20 years of staffing experience, the executive management team of Stay Staffed has provided workforce management solutions and vendor management system expertise to large and small organizations nationwide. Stay Staffed’s workforce management system, including vendor management software (VMS), provides staffing solutions to organizations that wish to achieve higher levels of efficiency, increase productivity, and reduce operational expenses.

Article Sources

Labor Forecast; Which states will generate jobs in 2014?; 7 Career Trends To Watch For In 2014


Date posted: February 27, 2014 in contingent staffing | Staffing News | workforce management | staffing trends |

US employers using more contingent staff than ever

One message seems to be coming through loud and clear in recent employment data. US employers are using more contingent staff than ever.

While some employers may approach contingent staffing with caution, those who have benefited from working with contingent staff know that it can be mutually beneficial for both employer and employee. Seasoned employers know that a long-term investment in an individual hire involves some risk. Contingent staffing firms help to mitigate that risk. It’s a trial period for both parties. Workers can decide whether they like their new employer and whether the job is a good fit. One ideal — and frequent — outcome of a temporary, per-diem or contract assignment is that the employee is hired full-time and enjoys a long and rewarding career with the company. Still, there are other employees who choose contingent work because of the independence it affords them, the flexibility in locations and hours, and the sense that it provides of being their own boss.

Whether or not they’re using contingent staff, many employers are finding themselves in the unexpected situation of having a hard time finding qualified workers to fill open positions — even though unemployment rates in the US are still higher than ideal.

According to recent reports one relevant factor is the “skills gap”: the training and education that US workers possess does not match the skills needed by our increasingly technological economy. Analyses like this one from the New York Times, cite the slow economic recovery as a reason that some workers have dropped out of the job market altogether, although they may be good candidates for open positions of which they are unaware. Regional employment markets and training availability can make it hard for employers to locate the right candidates — and for job seekers find the locations where their skills are in demand.

Whether employers’ issues are with minimizing costs and hiring risks, or with expanding their staffing search, a workforce management solution can be an invaluable asset. With their national reach and experience sourcing candidates in an increasingly automated employment market, providers like Stay Staffed deliver an effective way for employers to reach hard-to-find candidates.

Date posted: October 1, 2013 in contingent staffing | Staffing News | workforce management | employment rates | Temporary Workers | trends in contingent staffing |

Labor Force Demographics Changing the Way Employers Manage Their Workforce

Across the country and across all industries, companies are increasingly supplementing their permanent workforce through the use of contingent workers. In fact, the BLS reports that 19 percent of all new U.S. jobs created since the end of the recession were contract workers. Further, a study by Intuit predicts that temporary or contract workers will make up more than 40% of the U.S. workforce by 2020.

And there’s good reason for these rising employment numbers:

  • Contract workers offer staffing flexibility and allow companies to better manage risk in an uncertain economy.
  • The need for mobile contingent workforces in the construction and extraction industries.
  • Cost savings by outsourcing specialized functions such as Information Technology (IT), healthcare specialties, and customer service.
  • The ability to staff special projects with the requisite professionals without hiring full-time employees.
  • Temporary workers are exempt from new healthcare law requirements.

How Organizations Can Prepare for the Increase in Temporary Workers

To effectively manage their permanent and contingent workforces, many organizations are finding VMS software solutions provide the best return-on-investment.

A Vendor Management System (VMS):

  • Automates the sourcing and recruitment function for hiring contingent and permanent staff.
  • Prequalifies candidates, secures documentation, and verifies credentials.
  • Manages employee timekeeping and payroll.
  • Automates vendor invoicing and payments for all parties.

Organizations that utilize vendor management software to manage their contingent workforce find they are able to:

  • Build deeper talent pools through centralized access to hundreds of qualified staffing agencies nationwide.
  • Create a more efficient, streamlined hiring process resulting in improved fill-rates, reduced overtime, fewer staff shortages and the ability to find specialty workers faster.
  • Improve candidate quality through a comprehensive job-to-candidate matching process.
  • Achieve 100% compliance outcomes through automated credentialing and electronic document management system.
  • Adapt quickly to changing conditions through the centralized management of permanent and contingent staffing needs.
  • Receive more favorable labor rates through increased agency competition resulting in annual savings of several thousand dollars per employee.
  • Enhance management oversight through VMS dashboard analytics and reporting, including hiring manager approval, budget cost analysis, and vendor performance/costs/risks. Plus electronic notifications to your management team with updates on important staffing decisions and alerts

Changing workforce demographics must be met with innovative and strategic staffing solutions. With over 20 years of staffing experience, Stay Staffed has provided workforce management solutions and vendor management system expertise to small, medium, and large organizations nationwide.

StayStaffed workforce management software accesses The Candidate Direct Marketplace ® offering industry an all-encompassing contingent staffing solution. Contact a StayStaffed representative today, online or at 800-585-1710, to arrange a free, no-obligation online VMS product demonstration.


Date posted: July 11, 2013 in Construction Industry | contingent staffing | Extraction Industry | Financial Industry | Healthcare Industry | Information Technology | Oil and Gas Industry | recruitment process outsourcing | vendor management systems | workforce management | BLS | construction industry | contingent workers | Extraction Industry | Healthcare Industry | Information Technology Industry | Labor Force | rising employment | staffing solutions | Temporary Workers | Workforce |

67% of Healthcare Providers Struggle with IT Recruiting

Sixty-seven percent is a large number and it jumps to 73% for healthcare employers that are recruiting Epic-certified healthcare IT professionals in order to comply with EMR requirements.

The survey, “Closing the IT Talent Gap in Health Care” by consulting firm Towers Watson, profiled more than 100 healthcare employers and found that the majority are having problems with both the retention and recruitment of healthcare IT workers. Of the respondents, 52 percent are hospital systems and 67 percent have more than 5,000 employees.

Closing IT Talent Gaps for Healthcare Recruitment

In the short term, health systems and medical providers need information technology professionals in order to comply with EHR “meaningful use” requirements which take effect in 2014. But in the long term and according to the study, “the real payoff of an effective and fully compliant IT system is its role in aiding clinical decision making. Many healthcare leaders are already seeing how real savings can accrue from using evidence-based medicine to help redesign the way services are delivered. And IT systems, instead of only supporting clinical services, can now help determine what clinical services will be provided.”

The challenge for hospital IT recruiters is to better understand the current state of talent gaps and balance both short- and long-term challenges in healthcare into an effective information technology workforce recruitment solution. Health systems that are better able to balance the practical needs of healthcare IT workers – such as competitive pay and job security – with the long-term goal of helping an industry transform technologically, will win out going forward.

In order to effectively staff their IT departments, healthcare recruiters need to close the gap between what they think is important to IT professionals and what is actually important to them. After a thorough analysis, you can then tailor your incentive package and employee value proposition to attract top-quality healthcare IT personnel for both the short- and long-term.

Healthcare information technology staffing can be resolved with workforce management system and an enhanced job-to-candidate skill-matching process. With a full range of recruitment services including our Candidate Direct Marketplace® Vendor Management Systems (VMS), Managed Service Provider (MSP), and Recruitment Process Outsourcing (RPO), employers have the ability to optimize their IT staffing in partnership with a dedicated StayStaffed Client Account Manager. Our contingent IT workforce management systems combined with our reputable staffing agencies nationwide, will help you to source, recruit, hire or optimize your contingent IT industry jobs quickly and efficiently.

By providing IT staffing agencies with detailed information about the job, skills required, long term career path and benefits, they will be able to source the most qualified person that matches what employers need as well as matching the candidate’s expectations. Our Client Account Managers are skilled at analyzing your needs and getting it to the right agencies using our comprehensive Vendor Management System to simplify and expedite the entire process.“ Said Sue Higgins, Stay Staffed Director of Product Development.

Contact a StayStaffed representative now for a 20-minute VMS demonstration to learn how we can streamline your IT staffing. Phone (800) 585-1710 to talk to learn more.

Source: Closing the IT Talent Gap in Health Care

Date posted: July 1, 2013 in contingent staffing | Information Technology | recruitment process outsourcing | vendor management systems | workforce management | EHR | Healthcare Recruitment | IT industry jobs | IT Recruiting | IT talent gap | Managed Service Provider | Recruitment Process Outsourcing | Vendor Management Systems | VMS solutions for healthcare employers | workforce recruitment solution |

Five Workforce Management Tips for a Successful Internship Program

Summer — it’s prime season for student internships in many industries, from finance to legal to business services.

While some employers may view internships as an efficient way to hire temporary staff and catch up on clerical work, seasoned workforce management professionals know that interns can do so much more.

How to Turn Interns into “Real” Workers:

  1. Cast a Wide Net
    Interview as many candidates as you can. Post your internships on university job boards and attend job fairs at nearby schools to let students know what you’re looking for in an intern and what opportunities you’re offering. Reach out to professors or department heads to find out if they have students who might be a good fit for your company. But exercise good sense when recruiting interns, too. Don’t recruit for public relations interns at an engineering school. You get the idea.
  2. Pay Them What They’re Worth
    Unpaid internships may sound like a good idea, But… meeting the legal requirements for unpaid interns is tough. Check with a local employment attorney or government office  to find out the regulations that apply in your state, county or municipality.  It is likely that if you’re benefiting in any way from your interns’ work, you’ll need to pay them at least minimum wage — and, realistically, you’ll probably want to go beyond that. The compensation you offer will vary with demand for the position. For example, to attract an IT or finance intern whose skills may be in demand, it may be appropriate to pay them what you would pay an entry level full-time hire. One of the more common challenges with interns is attendance and promptness; not surprisingly, adequate compensation correlates strongly with attendance.
  3. Provide Meaningful Training and Work
    Use interns for more than routine clerical tasks. Provide training in the real functions of your business, just as you would for full-time employees. Most interns understand — and you should spell it out during the interview — that there will be a certain amount of administrative work in their job description. But if that’s all there is, both you and they will miss an opportunity. Ensure that interns work on projects that are fun, challenging, and align with a business objective — something they’ll be proud to list on a resume or in a portfolio. Expose interns to some of the best performers in your company, shadowing or being mentored by a top performer can be invaluable.
  4. Be Patient
    It can be challenging to manage young staffers who in many cases have never had a “real” job. You’ll have to be clear about many workplace rules, even those that for more seasoned workers would go without saying. You’ll also have to be detailed about your expectations for your interns’ work and explain how they will be evaluated. You’ll want to show them how their output is used within your organization and why their contributions matter. On the flip side, you’ll need to be aware that a college intern’s goals and values may not be the same as those of your more experienced staff. And keep an eye out for things that they’re good at — which your more seasoned workers may not be so familiar with (social media, anyone?) Check out this interesting article from Forbes on working with “millennials” (born between 1980 and 2000). Live up to your end of the bargain, and see that your interns live up to theirs!
  5. Keep the Long Game in Mind
    Interns are more than just contingent staff that disappears at the end of the season. What’s more satisfying than having that sophomore-year student return for a junior-year internship and get hired after senior year? Not much! Now you’ve got an “entry level” hire with years of experience in your organization. If you were a patient trainer and coach, your workforce management decisions paid off. Plus, you’ve also hired someone who’s been spreading the good word about your company among fellow students and in the community.

Bottom line: recruiting, training and managing interns isn’t that different from how you recruit, train and manage your regular workforce. It may take a little more time, but it can definitely be a staffing decision that pays off.

Looking to enhance every aspect of your recruiting, hiring and staffing processes, including internships? Consider a managed service provider.

Date posted: April 23, 2013 in contingent staffing | workforce management | hiring interns | interns | internship | staffing management |