Applying meaningful use to IT talent acquisition
Healthcare organizations are immersed in implementing IT systems to meet requirements under provisions of the HITECH Act. However, one thing they may not be anticipating is the surge in the number of healthcare information technology jobs they will need to fill once these systems are in place. In fact, healthcare information technology tops the list of the top 10 “hot careers” for college graduates in 2011, according to a new study from the University of San Diego Extension. For instance, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the need for medical records and health information technicians is expected to grow by 20 percent in just a decade.
This expected overall growth presents a dual challenge for healthcare organizations – the need to attract and evaluate top talent in the field. From the candidate perspective, IT people – particularly the most talented and coveted – place a premium on culture, i.e., is this a “cool” place to work. The first impression is important and it is typically formed in the application process. From an organizational perspective, it is critical to have an application process that can assess and validate talent.
The solution? Meaningful use is the standard by which organizations measure and validate their healthcare IT solutions. It’s also a standard that can be applied to the talent application process to facilitate positive outcomes for candidates and employers. To determine meaningful use, ask yourself this two-part question: Does your current application process promote a meaningful interaction for the candidate and, second, does it provide you with meaningful insight into the candidate’s real potential?
Orchestrating a two-way process
Consider that the recruiting system or process is the first point of contact and exposure a prospective employee has with an organization. And, as demand increases, healthcare IT talent will be evaluating prospective employers as much as employers will be evaluating them. It follows that IT talent is more likely to be attracted to those companies that incorporate forward-thinking and innovative technology in their hiring process, with the candidate experience being a critical component.
For example, a video message or highlights from a conference presentation from the CEO, VP, or IT manager can be loaded at the front-end of an automated application process, providing candidates with a personal introduction to your organization and its culture. A realistic job preview or corporate video can also better articulate the challenges, culture, and opportunities of the position to the candidate in a more engaging and informative format than a traditional job description.