The Healthcare Reform That Doesn’t Need D.C.'s Help

Better employee engagement can help solve other issues; a new Korn Ferry report.



Healthcare reform from Washington still seems a ways off; that leaves only a technology revolution, a new business model, increased patient expectations, massive consolidation and a talent shortage in key areas for the industry to deal with.

Each of these challenges requires unique approaches, but a new Korn Ferry report suggests that an enthusiastic workforce may play a bigger role than expected in tackling them. Indeed, there's a strong correlation between engagement of healthcare employees and patient satisfaction levels, readmission rates and staff turnover--not to mention the bottom line. Gone are the days when engagement was a “nice-to-have”—it is now a business imperative.

The report, “Engagement Matters for Healthcare” was co-authored by Shannon Libbert and Brian Noble, both associate client partners in Korn Ferry’s Healthcare Advisory practice. While measuring engagement is important, healthcare organizations must commit to the goal of increasing engagement. “Most healthcare organizations are measuring engagement at least annually, but our experience shows us that these same organizations are not maximizing the insights that can be pulled from that data and translating that information into impactful engagement improvement strategies.” says Noble.

One of the key improvement strategies focuses on the importance of connecting organizational mission to individual purpose. “When people can connect the purpose in their own work to the organization’s mission, a strong engagement bond is formed,” Libbert says. “In an increasingly competitive environment, it is important that healthcare systems cultivate loyalty from their staff and physicians.” Other engagement improvement strategies include the importance of perceived confidence in senior leadership, increasing growth and leadership development opportunities, and building an attractive employer brand and employee value proposition.

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