The pulse on health care hiring for the second half of 2013

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Medical doctor / nurse help wanted signBy Jason Lovelace, president of CareerBuilder Healthcare

During the back half of the year, employers in health care are looking to add on employees in full-time, permanent positions, as well as part-time employees and temporary or contract workers. In CareerBuilder and MiracleWorkers.com’s latest national survey, health care employers indicated that full-time, permanent hiring in the second half of 2013 will show a gradual improvement over 2012, while temporary and contract hiring is expected to increase 15 percentage points over last year.

While projected additions to full-time staffs have improved marginally from last year, temporary and part-time hiring is expected to grow at a more rapid pace. At the same time, there is an increase in health care employers planning on transitioning temporary employees to full-time roles over the next quarter. These trends reflect the hesitation typical of a post-recession market, along with growing optimism that will continue as employers gain confidence in the economic recovery.

Looking forward to the remainder of the year, there will be a continued boost in temporary hiring activity as well as incremental increases in hiring for full-time and part-time positions:

  • 51 percent of health care employers plan to hire full-time, permanent employees, up 2 percentage points from last year
  • 34 percent plan to hire part-time employees, up from 28 percent last year
  • 27 percent plan to hire temporary or contract workers, up from 12 percent last year

Other hot roles in health care
Those who don’t have an M.D. can still find a career in the thriving health care industry. In addition to hiring for health care-specific positions, health care employers are also placing an emphasis on roles involving newer technologies, big data and social media. These hiring trends reflect the growing importance of technology in making patient records, treatment information and other medical data readily available across networks and facilities, as well as the need for strong customer service.

In the remainder of 2013, employers plan to hire in the following areas:

Hiring stable in both big cities & rural areas
When looking at where the health care jobs are, job creation continues in both big cities and outlying towns, where areas are more densely populated and can be accessed by greater numbers of patients. Of health care employers who are hiring in the second half of 2013, 72 percent said they will be hiring for positions in large metropolitan areas, while 42 percent will be hiring in nonmetropolitan, rural areas, similar to last year.

Hiring in the third quarter
Hiring plans for full-time, permanent employees are varied in the health care industry. While the majority of employers (57 percent) anticipate no changes to head count, more than a quarter of employers are looking to add to their staff. Between July and September, 27 percent of employers plan to hire full-time, permanent employees, similar to last year.

While the economy continues to improve, the health care industry remains a strong center of employment and job creation. And as technology grows more essential to job performance and patient care, new roles will be added to meet the industry’s demands.

Jason Lovelace is the president of CareerBuilder Healthcare.

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