contingent talent management for healthcare

Healthcare staffing agencies have a ton of opportunity ahead of them in 2018.

Not only are jobs in the industry growing at a pace two-and-a-half-times that of the national average, but historic staffing gaps and a wider adoption of contingent talent mean there’s more business to be won than ever before.

Of course, this also means greater competition than ever, so success will hinge on your ability to optimize crucial metrics like your average time-to-fill.

Find out why average time-to-fill is critical to your staffing agency’s success and how understanding and owning the three C’s of contingent talent management — or competency, compliance, and compensation — can help you generate greater ROI.

What Is Average Time-to-Fill and Why Is It Important for Healthcare Staffing Agencies?

As a healthcare staffing agency, you understand how competitive the landscape is. Clients rarely work with one agency alone and, therefore, your ability to win and keep business is dependent on your ability to place qualified talent faster than the others.

This is where average time-to-fill comes into play. Time-to-fill measures the length of time it takes for a staffing agency to receive and intake an order, find a qualified candidate, vet that candidate, have that candidate approved by said client, and to get that candidate onboarded and ready to hit the ground running.

Since healthcare is such a standardized industry, salaries often don’t vary as much as they do in other spaces. It’s harder for healthcare staffing agencies to build gross margin through salary negotiations like, say, a creative staffing agency might. Instead, their opportunity to increase revenue comes from decreasing time-to-fill, thereby also decreasing the amount of time and resources dedicated to each placement.

The lower your average time-to-fill, the more placements you can make in a work day and the greater ROI.

How Mastering the 3 C’s of Contingent Talent Management Can Help Lower Time-to-Fill and Increase ROI

In order to decrease your average time-to-fill, you need to attract and retain quality talent and be able to quickly and efficiently match and place those candidates to the appropriate client.

The three C’s of contingent talent management represent competency, compliance, and compensation — three areas of a healthcare staffing agency’s business that, when improved upon, will help you attract better talent and place them faster


It’s often said that staffing agencies are only as good as their worst recruiter. This is because it falls on the recruiter’s shoulders to evaluate the individual; it’s their responsibility to take a resume, a cover letter, an interview, and proof of competencies to then determine whether or not they can do the job they’ve applied for.

As recruiters in healthcare are aware, the stakes are much higher in this industry, as an incompetent hire could end up costing someone their life.

That’s why best-in-class healthcare staffing agencies leverage competency testing in their hiring process. By using behavioral and clinical assessments, a recruiter can better evaluate a candidate’s competency and more confidently move that candidate through the hiring funnel.

Further, the ability to provide clients with assessment results helps healthcare organizations feel more confident in their hiring and can even expedite placements. Being able to effectively assess a candidate’s competency and relay those results to a client can help lower your average time-to-fill and increase ROI.


Regulations in healthcare help save lives, but they also often lengthen and complicate the hiring process.

And, just like with competency, this is not an area of the business where you can afford to cut corners because it could potentially put patients’ lives at risk.

For staffing agencies, compliance is a headache on two fronts. Not only do they need to make sure their candidates meet the client’s compliance needs at the time of placement, but they also need to make sure the contingent staff they retain and place over and over again keeps up on compliance standards in between assignments.

The best way to optimize compliance is to automate it. Leading healthcare staffing agencies have learned that by leveraging healthcare-specific talent platforms that automatically prompt, serve, and remind contingent talent about compliance testing, they can more effectively keep talent pools up to date.

Further, if the staffing agency is the one initiating the compliance testing, then they are also responsible for the results of those tests. Again, like with competency, these compliance results can be a powerful tool in building client confidence in candidates and expediting placements.

The result is a lower average time-to-fill and a better ROI.


Just like the healthcare organizations they serve, staffing agencies cannot be successful if they aren’t working with great talent. And, as many agencies have learned, a major component of attracting and keeping top talent is compensation.

While competitive compensationis an important piece of the puzzle, we’re talking about the way, and the degree to which, a staffing agency is able to manage their payroll for contingent staff.

Ensuring contingent workers are paid consistently and on-time is critical to keeping them in your talent pool. Some agencies use industry-leading platforms that allow them to administer same-day pay, a true differentiator when providing payroll distribution options to your talent. These same platforms handle the complicated accounting calculations associated with travel nurses who might cross state lines from assignment to assignment.

By going the extra mile with compensation, you’ll create incentive for contingent workers to stay with your agency and increase your retention rates. This is important when we consider time-to-fill, as candidates you’ve placed in the past are often easier to place in the future. As such, better compensation management leads to better retention, which can make placements easier, lowering time-to-fill and increasing ROI.

How HealthcareSource Helps Healthcare Staffing Agencies Master the 3 C’s of Contingent Talent Management

Staffing Industry Analysts (SIA) has estimated that the staffing industry will continue last year’s upward trend and again grow at a 3 percent clip in 2018. When we consider the SIA research in the context of the rapid growth of healthcare employment and rising demand in the space, it’s easy to see the opportunity that lies ahead.

The HealthcareSource Contingent Talent ManagementSM platform combines industry-leading and healthcare-focused ATS technology with tools that can help you master competency, compliance, and compensation. Learn more here.

About Salvatore Trifilio

Salvatore Trifilio is a content marketer and former journalist who has written extensively on talent management and technology. Recently, Sal has focused almost exclusively on topics around recruitment marketing, talent acquisition, and employer branding for a wide range of industries and verticals. When he isn’t hammering away at his keyboard, Sal enjoys brewing beer and watching baseball.