Five Tips to Make Staff Turnover Less Painful

Employee turnover is far more costly to practices than most office managers realize, but it’s a fact of life for most medical practices. However, this fact doesn’t make it any easier to deal with. It is hard to lose people you’ve come to rely on for running your practice and the financial impact can hit hard. Here are a few ideas that can ease the pain and frustrations of staff turnover.

Hire the right candidates.

The best way to avoid potential problems when employees leave is to do a better job of keeping them around. That is easiest if you’ve done your due diligence during the hiring process. Go with your instinct during interviews and be sure to do additional research afterwards with background and reference checks. If you are confident you hired the right person, make sure they feel valued and appreciated while at your practice.

Cross train.

When an employee leaves, they also take their experience and knowledge with them. This is especially true if they are the only team member that had this knowledge. Make this potential problem avoidable by cross training employees. Every few weeks have people trade off on certain duties. Ensure that at least two people know the details of every system and feel comfortable with each role. In addition, it is important to keep a current list of all passwords.

Check in.

To boost your retention rate, you first need to find out where you stand with your staff. It is a good idea to send out periodic employee surveys to get a feel for how employees are feeling on a regular basis.

Conduct exit interviews.

An exit interview is a great opportunity to get some honest feedback about your practice environment. Ask detailed questions to find out more about what work is like for employees. Focus on confidentiality and ask for total honesty. It can be hard to hear negative things, but it is important to really listen and be open to changes that your practice may need. This can help prevent the loss of essential employees in the future.

Keep spirits high.

When a valued employee leaves, it can be extremely hard on the remaining staff. In addition to extra responsibilities falling on the shoulders of those who remain, employees can feel an emotional loss. Work to cultivate a team mindset during these times. Set goals as a team, organize team building activities and be sure reach out to all employees individually to reiterate that they are important to the practice.

Medical practices are constantly subject to factors beyond their control, but a practice’s workforce is vital to its success and it is something that can be somewhat controlled. By taking steps to reduce turnover, medical practices can control their costs, improve morale among existing employees and in the end boost patient satisfaction.

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