The healthcare industry is on track to add more jobs in the next ten years than any other occupational group in the United States. In fact, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics predicts that from 2020 to 2030, the healthcare industry will provide over 2.6 million jobs. This equates to a growth rate of 16%, making the healthcare industry the fastest growing job supplier in the nation.
However, a study from HIMSS in 2019 found 63% of hospitals had open positions specifically targeted toward healthcare professionals with technological efficiencies, and we know that because of technological advancements, new regulations and the general evolution of the industry, that number has grown. It’s become increasingly clearer that tech skills are an incredibly valuable—and limited—asset to have as a healthcare professional. Accordingly, any employer with a need to fill a position that requires medical staff to have some rudimentary tech expertise will need to be prepared to do so against a backdrop of a national shortage of potentially qualified candidates.
Whether you’re looking to fill a position for an RN, LPN, Pharmacists or Pharmacy Tech, it’s crucial for employers to be able to identify key tech skills for all new hires. Further, knowledge of these key tech skills helps employers quickly identify a valuable recruit, providing a critical advantage over competitors when hiring from such a limited pool of qualified candidates.
This is where we can help. Based on our expertise surrounding current industry trends, we have the top tech skills to look for when hiring qualified healthcare professionals.
Tech Skills for an RN or LPN
EHR/EMR Technology: These professionals need to be able to navigate a computer system because patient information now comes in the form of Electronic Health Records. RNs and LPNs must know how to properly maintain medical records, run reports, and collect/input data. An RN or LPN who is experienced with the programs associated with this technology can easily troubleshoot any errors and get back to focusing on patient care.
Administrative Digital Filing: Now, with lean teams, RNs and LPNs often find themselves handling a bit more of the administrative duties. Technology helps keep that efficient but an RN or LPN who knows the ins and outs of scheduling, finance and/or budget management tools will be a huge asset to the team.
Video Conferencing: This is a newer requirement as telehealth becomes an increasingly more utilized offering. If your RN or LPN has experience with video conferencing software, they’ll be able to help keep things running smoothly and possibly help take on more patients.
Portable Monitor: Portable monitor equipment allows RNs and LPNs to monitor vital signs like ECG, respiratory rates, and oxygen saturations while transmitting the information back to a central monitor. This means that nurses will get an alarm notification if there’s an emergency. LPNs and RNs need to know how to operate the machinery, but also troubleshoot if there’s an error and know who to call in/what to do when an alarm goes off.
Tech Skills for a Pharmacist
Robotic prescription dispensing system: This technological tool identifies and batches all prescriptions so that the delivery of proper medication takes place. You’ll also need to be able to read the reports, understanding the detailed insight they provide into how many prescriptions are being filled each day and who filled them, among others.
EHR Technology: Many pharmacies now offer onsite medical appointments which means that a majority of pharmacists are receiving information through an EHR program. Pharmacists use the EHR to compare and contrast medication lists, link medications to patient problems, evaluate effectiveness and adverse drug events (ADEs), and make documentation recommendations to provide a complete history of the patient's medications.
Accounts Receivable Software: A pharmacist also should have a working knowledge of any accounts receivable software his or her retail pharmacy may use. Such software systems provide pharmacies control over their cash flow, as well as workflow.
Automatic price updating software: This is another technological tool a pharmacist should familiarize him/herself with. These systems update price schedules based on competitive prices for a pharmacy’s particular region.
Tech Skills for a Pharmacy Tech
Automated prescription fulfillment programs: From robotics to computer software, a pharmacy technician is expected to oversee the automation process. Technology doesn’t always get it right. While it certainly makes our lives easier, in a pharmacy environment, the pharmacy tech must be able to not only operate the program, but double-check it for accuracy as well.
Inventory management programs: With pharmacists stepping into more patient care roles, pharmacy techs have been stepping in to handle more of the back-end tasks such as inventory management. This includes keeping a digital record of what’s in stock, what’s on the way and what’s soon to be expired.
EHR Technology: Patient records are mostly digital these days. This means someone has to keep those records updated and clean, and while the pharmacist is moving into a more patient-centered role, managing the electronic health records now falls mostly on pharmacy techs.
TGG Packaging Software: This is the packaging technology that benefits patients in terms of receiving medicines in pouches that are organized according to dosages. It helps the pharmacies too as they can increase the number of filing of prescriptions per patient. You are required to learn how to use this simple automated packaging technology and be on hand to help rectify any hiccups that might occur.
Soft Skills to Consider in Healthcare Professionals
Whether you’re hiring an RN, LPN, or work in the Pharmacy, how they interact with colleagues, patients and community around them matters immensely. People have changed over the years and they now seek a very specific kind of experience when it comes to medical care and support. Medical professionals must adopt “soft skills” to answer this demand. Here are 10 soft skills to look for in your candidate:
Critical Thinking/Problem Solving
Attention to Detail
Compassion and Empathy
Proactive Work Ethic
Constant updating of knowledge
As healthcare is an ever-advancing industry, employees with tech skills play a fundamental role and will only become more desirable over time. Therefore, employers must invest in their future by not only finding the right professionals to add to their team but offer continuing education support. Technology is always evolving, so employers can help their staff by investing in training and education for any new tech programs or processes that come up. Not only will this ensure your team is up to date on the latest and greatest, but it also communicates that you see them as an important part of the team. This creates sustainable retention strategies and directly impacts the organization’s bottom line.
How can we help?
Tech skills are extremely tough to qualify, especially when you have tight hiring timelines, but with our expertise, we can help! Not only do we know what’s happening industry-wide, we also have expertise with your local market specifically. This means we can quickly identify exactly what you’re looking for, the skills required and help connect you with the very best talent out there. Even if that means extending our search outside of a specific area. Because of our global reach, we have greater access to top-level healthcare professionals and a much larger candidate pool to pull from. Partner with us today so you don’t have to walk the hiring journey alone!