Does Your MSP put Your Hospital and Patients First?

August 8, 2023
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Managed service providers (MSP) take over the burden of managing multiple healthcare staffing vendors and their contracts. However, the number and quality of services offered by MSPs varies dramatically. In response to the demand for contingent staff, the gap between those that simply deliver candidates and those who truly optimize your recruitment and workforce management processes is widening.

In a 2019 Workforce Solution Buyers Survey from Staffing Industry Analysts (SIA), the net promoter score (NPS) for MSPs was a -3%, indicating there is some serious work needed from MSPs to reduce the number of unhappy clients.

If you are finding that it’s taking longer to fill positions than it used to, that the candidates your MSP sends you don’t match your criteria or the process of working with your MSP has become too complicated, it may be time to evaluate whether you’re getting the service you deserve.

What you need in an MSP partner has changed

Your MSP should serve as your partner, with a strong code of ethics that guides their approach to recruitment and workforce management — putting the needs of your facility and patients first. They should feel like an extension of your department, with the goal of improving patient experience and outcomes while saving your facility time and money. They should also customize their program around your needs, rather than make you adapt to their business model. In other words, they should be in service to you.

In order to ensure you are getting the best return on your investment, consider the following traits of a good MSP when evaluating your own.

1. The quality of candidates is consistently high.

Your MSP always sends you qualified contingent staff because they know what you need. They’ve spent time at your facility to get to know your culture and environment. They meet with you, either online or in person, to evaluate the unique qualifications you require for each position. When you request specific skill sets or personality traits, they know exactly what kind of candidates will fit your needs.

2. Good communication creates a strong working relationship.

Your MSP should be easy to contact and should respond to your requests quickly and efficiently. They should give you the option of communicating in whatever method you prefer — by phone, text, email or video conference.

Some MSPs dedicate an employee to work at your facility as an extension of your own team. They can almost guarantee good communication because that employee is empowered to be your advocate on behalf of the MSP.

3. Your MSP structures their partner relationships,  so they want to serve you.

Your MSP has screened all the vendors working on your vendor panel to ensure they have high quality standards. They promise objectivity and fairness and let vendors hear from you directly, so they understand what is most important to your organization.

The panel may be made up of your chosen vendors, their network of vendor partners and/or their internal recruiters. They consider the vendor panel a strategic asset to ensure quality and the highest fill rate possible. Treating you like a market of one, they focus on prioritizing and filling your jobs first and post each job to all recruiters simultaneously for the fastest results.

4. Your MSP is transparent about pricing and fill rates.

From the start, they determine the billing required to deliver the fill rate that will help you provide appropriate patient care. They don’t promise a fill rate at a much lower bill rate, only to come back three months later with a higher bill rate because they can’t fill your needs at an artificially low rate.

They use cloud-based software that gives you instant visibility of open positions across all your units and the fill rate for each one. They also apply social listening technology, active candidate, staff and partner feedback programs, as well as proprietary job scraping technologies to ensure you know where you stand to win talent.

5. A dedicated clinical team manages contingent staff.

High performing MSPs have an experienced clinical team on staff that works on behalf of your facility. They understand your floor managers’ challenges, and they sit down with them regularly to determine the unique requirements for the positions they need to fill. They support the entire process of screening, interviewing and onboarding contingent and long-term staff to prepare them for success.

In order to relieve you of the burden of staffing, so you can focus on quality patient care, they should be highly trained board-certified clinicians who have worked in hospital leadership roles before.

6. A proactive approach to problem solving.

Your MSP should do more than just manage your workforce or fill job orders. Through a clinically and technology led approach, they should start by understanding the root cause of your challenges to create a better outcome.

When the program is running and the MSP’s clinical team perceives performance or clinical issues with any healthcare professionals, they recommend interventions to help improve performance. This might include additional training or mentorship — which they provide. The clinical team also takes responsibility for ensuring your healthcare staff has appropriate, up-to-date licenses and credentials.

7. Innovation is a priority.

The MSP keeps up with the latest trends in healthcare technology in order to provide insights, improved workflows and transparency. They may utilize your vendor management system technology and improve upon it where needed. Alternatively, they may offer their own platform and provide digital products they’ve developed to improve both recruitment and staff workflow efficiency. They are able to pull relevant data to provide actionable insights to help you schedule and optimize your workforce.

8. They look toward the future.

Contingent staffing may serve an immediate need, but a good MSP will be anticipating future needs with multiple staffing solutions. They offer a mix of visiting nurses, allied professionals and locum tenens providers, on a temporary, temp-to-perm and permanent basis, as well as international applicants to increase your available pool of candidates. Based on your unique needs, they should provide short- and long-term temporary placements that can transition into permanent staff as needed.

If your current MSP is not up to the task of developing and managing a reliable and engaged workforce that improves patient care, it may be time to consider a change. Health Carousel is dedicated to serving you and providing a better experience for healthcare professionals to ensure your organization is always the organization of choice when healthcare jobs are posted.

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About Health Carousel

Health Carousel is committed to partnering with world-class healthcare facilities across the country, providing rewarding assignments for Registered Nurses and Allied Health Professionals, and attracting the best internal talent at all career levels.