Editorial Note: This is a contributed guest post written by Amy Goble, Vice President of AHACareerCenter.org, the online job board of the American Hospital Association (AHA).

It’s hard to keep up with all the changes happening in health care, especially as they relate to talent acquisition and the evolving roles of the health care workforce. To help health care recruiters and HR professionals stay abreast of the latest trends, AHACareerCenter.org has released a comprehensive report using resources from the American Hospital Association and other trusted sources. Here are three insights from the 2015 Health Care Talent Acquisition Environmental Scan:

1.  The age range of health care workers spans more than forty years, creating distinctive challenges and opportunities for both employers and employees, such as:

Organizational hierarchies may be restructured as Gen Xers and Millennials rise to leadership roles. As Gen Xers and Millennials become leaders, health care organizations may need to consider flattening their structure and removing departmental and management hierarchies. Gen Xers and Millennials — future leaders and the bulk of the workforce — consider organizational hierarchies as barriers to creativity and innovation.

Health care organizations may need to modify job requirements to cater to new and emerging roles. This includes adjusting competencies so that the workforce aligns with new population health needs. For example, some jobs will need to be redesigned as technology advances. As jobs are redefined, the workforce may transition and redeploy to different settings, roles and organizational structures.

2.  With changing demographics, communities are becoming increasingly diverse. The unique diversity of a community should be reflected in the leadership and staff of its hospitals and health care systems. However, gaps in diversity still exist, made evident by the following statistics:

Minorities represented 31% of patients nationally in 2013, up from 29% in 2011. However, minorities comprise only 14% of hospital board members, 12% of executive leadership positions, and 17% of first- and mid-level management positions.

Diversity efforts in hospital recruitment and retention are lacking. Just under half of respondents (48%) said their hospital has a documented plan to recruit and retain a diverse workforce that reflects the organization’s patient population. Only 22% of hospital hiring managers have a diversity goal in their performance expectations.

3.  The rate at which physicians are employed directly by hospitals continues to increase. In fact, physician employment by hospitals has risen by more than 54% since 2000. Other statistics gathered in regards to the physician employment market include: 

More than 244,000 physicians have found positions in hospitals, due to a variety of reasons: changes in lifestyle, decreased interest in owning a business, levels of regulation, and more. Meanwhile, hospitals are seeking out physicians as a way to increase coordination and manage costs.

Only 10% of hospital senior leaders are physicians, according to most surveyed CEOs. This is due in part to the fact that most medical schools don’t include formal business training on running a practice, much less a multimillion-dollar health system. With more than half of new physicians entering the field as salaried employees, the potential pool of physician leaders has grown exponentially larger. Soon, having physician leaders will not only will be important, but a mandate. It’s critical that hospitals develop a new wave of physician leaders as business partners on the journey to becoming a successful accountable care organization.

 Are you interested in learning more about the state of health care recruitment? 

Download the 2015 Health Care Talent Acquisition Environmental Scan

This annual AHACareerCenter.org-sponsored report serves as a snapshot of America’s health care employment landscape and offers insight on the challenges and opportunities impacting the industry.  

Amy Goble

About Amy Goble

Amy Goble, Vice President of AHACareerCenter.org is responsible for the overall operations, growth and development of AHACareerCenter.org and manages the American Hospital Association affiliation with the National Healthcare Career Network (NHCN). Amy’s close ties to human resources began with a previous career in retirement plan services, employee benefits and managed care. She is a member of the AHA’s Workforce Committee and the American Society of Healthcare Human Resources Administration (ASHHRA).