Part 1 of our guest blog post series with Erika Duncan

When it comes to talent acquisition at St. Joseph’s Health, we’ve been undergoing a transformation within the HR organization to increase effectiveness and alignment, both strategically and operationally.

Two priorities soon became apparent:

  1. There were a number of disparate technology solutions in place. Recruiters were bogged down by manual and transactional tasks and not able to spend nearly enough time on efforts that would move us forward in the quality of our hires.
  2. The three areas of hiring – Physicians, Nurses, and Non-Nurses – were completely siloed. There was little sharing of learnings, collaboration, common processes or technology.

The combination of these two factors influenced Phase 1 – to streamline processes and automate wherever possible, thereby freeing recruiter time to focus on what they do best – discovering great candidates. We started by bringing all the recruiters together into one group so that they could start to leverage and learn from each other’s expertise. While hiring for each area has some differences, there are certainly best practices and common processes we can implement for efficiency. As a team, we then mapped out all of our processes, down to the minutes involved in each, to identify areas to automate or shift responsibility.

A top priority for automation was the time-intensive process of reference checking. We deployed SkillSurvey Reference and its Pre-Hire 360® workflow. To help illustrate some of the impact that has been realized in less than 4 months, here is some feedback from our Physician Recruiter, John Cerniglia:

“Online reference checking immediately took away the phone tag traditionally involved in getting three references per physician candidate, which is a big deal. What used to take me 4 – 7 days to collect is now typically completed in less than 48 hours. Not to mention, I used to have to block off 5-7 pm two nights a week to make follow up calls, so my wife is much happier now because I am more present!

“Not only do references come in quicker, but the quality of the information shared is more comprehensive and much more honest. I can make better screening decisions based on the reference feedback. Previously, I provided hiring managers with a list of who the references were and very basic information. Now I can deliver a whole report with quantitative and qualitative details about a candidate’s strengths and weaknesses. This is very powerful in the decision-making process, and also has implications for our longer term development strategy.

“On average, I am conducting 25-30 physician searches each year, and planning 80-90 site visits. Using SkillSurvey Reference allows me to get qualified candidates scheduled more quickly, and ultimately to plan more effective site visits. Overall, I’ve been scheduling more visits, more quickly, and with the best candidates.”

John’s experience is not unique on the team. As time is being freed up, we have been better able to take advantage of the expertise across the group, sharing ideas, mentoring each other, and taking on new projects. I feel more empowered as a leader. The team is less stressed and they feel better about their professional development opportunities. They are more engaged and on track.

Now we are seeing many opportunities to explore areas that are more strategic. These include employee development and satisfaction, enhanced opportunities for candidate placement, sourcing, better reporting, and predictive analytics.

Check out part 2 of this blog post series here.

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