Flentis Logo
Hospital Staff: Float Pool USA For Engaged & Happy Workforce

Hospital Staff: Float Pool USA for Engaged & Happy Workforce

Healthcare in 2020 saw the worst of staff shortage, low census of nurses, and difficulty in hiring the qualified workforce. However, the first time conceptualized term “Float Pool” in 1981 saved the year of Pandemic by an inch.

What’s Float Pool USA?

Invented during the economic recession of 1981, Flex(ible) Pools were a saving grace for the health care system. Hospitals and academic medical institutions were struggling to keep up with the operational costs that involved adopting new technology at ever-rising interest rates. They soon started to transfer their permanently employed nurses to different departments where the need arose.

Eventually, these travel float pool nurses were a part of the group employed internally and/or externally by a recruitment agency. They work in different departments or units of the hospital or residential house. And they have acquired various skillsets that make them a perfect fit for more than one specialized job.

Why do hospitals and nurses agree to flex pool work ecosystem?

Patient care is a highly sensitive and crucial matter which involves a high degree of legal and ethical practices. However, from the employee perspective, medical staff and nurses have faced the burns of emergencies and overtiring work schedules. Leading to early dropout from the career or changing jobs frequently.

The job satisfaction and overall happiness factor have remained low in this segment of the industry. Despite impressive remuneration, the retention rate remained low for a lot of institutes. That’s when the concept of owning a float pool got attention. Now, the hospitals prefer maintaining such a group of employees to avert the expensive hires, manage the seasonal rise in demand of services and improve the medical work policies. And the nurses prefer the flexibility of the job, the opportunity to work with various hospitals and gain invaluable experience and knowledge. This has also helped them manage work-life balance and enough rejuvenation before they handle another tough day in the ICU!

But how do you manage such a hybrid workforce?:

Healthcare vendor management system

Handling Float Pool Via Healthcare Vendor Management System

Let’s take you through what happened with our client in 2021!

For the sake of writing this article, let us call them “ABC Hospital,” located in North Carolina, USA. We keep the identity of our clients highly protected!

ABC Hospital is specialized in treating patients with genetic diseases due to their highly facilitated research center that earns a reputation from around the world.

However, the interim problems were:

  1. High cost of hiring nurses
  2. Staff with less multi-faceted skills
  3. Due to the nature of this hospital’s routine, urgent need of staff used to arrive and a shortage of on-premise nurses caused regular chaos.

These simple-looking but intrinsic issues caused panic in management and disrupted patient care.

The solution was to build a float pool. But that’s where Flentis entered with a technology solution to save them and expunge the cost of hiring, maintaining, and handling this group.

Initially, the healthcare VMS platform hosted their recruitment process and helped them build a workforce of 70 flex employees in the first month. To understand the cost analysis, the hospital incurred an average of $70,000/nurse every year. ABC Hospital had 204 on-premise nurses amounted to $14.28 Million annually. Then there was additional expenses of $20 Million HR documentation and contract legalities. Add to this, $17.67 Million for overtime and incentive charges per year. These incurred costs mounted the total evaluation of the nursing department to $52 Million annually.

Even though the billing was at the high-end, this didn’t ensure staffing consistency, happy workforce and high retention rate. That’s when, 70 flex nurses entered to bring down the costing to $45 Million as it immediately reduced 45% of the Overtime cost.

Gradually, the hospital is experiencing benefits beyond these commercials like automated mails sent to our all traveling medical staff for open requisition by our hospital vendor management USA application. This has greatly reduced stressful time for their human resource dept to find the credible and eligible candidate within time. Invoice management and filling of timesheet has been a game of a few clicks that created unnecessary stress at both the ends.

What are the general challenges of having a float pool workforce?

While there’s a lot of good in having such a workforce, there are a few challenges one must prepare to handle:

  1. Difference in Governance and Compliance Policies
    The ‘traveling’ medical staff is bound to feel like an outsider as the name suggest. But when hospital policies don’t cover them, that is more likely to create a difference. Also, when they are put under extreme vetting process on a daily basis sends them a sense of being a threat to security.
  2. No Defined Unit
    Float pool staff is usually not assigned a unit as they are required to handle where the contingency arises. This separates them out from the perm employees and fostering a thought of ‘out of place’.

How can you ensure your build a cohesive, engaged and happy workforce?

  1. Community Events
    Hosts from small chit-chat sessions to large events to bring all employees, irrespective of their employment type, under one umbrella to share their insights with each other.
  2. Allotting a Nurse Manager
    Float pool employees must always be assisted and managed by a senior official who helps them navigate their duties and responsibilities seamlessly. Even though they wouldn’t have a defined unit, but a sense of belonging and accountability will develop.
  3. Rewards & Recognition
    Find policies that imitate work ecosystem of a permanent employee. Manager visibility to getting incentivized for a good day at work will act as a motivation to do better and accept future offers at your hospital.
  4. Professional Development Opportunities
    Using our learning management system and by integrating third party LMS, you can easily create a self-learning environment for your workforce. Along with that, these exemplary employees who work in various domains can help your existing workforce to grow. Providing them a platform will be a good decision!
  5. Timesheet and expense sheet management
    It’s tough to keep offline accounts of attendance when you have flexible working hours. Our in-built timesheet manager and invoice keeper is a great tool of convenience.

So, what’s your thought?

Our healthcare vendor management software has a lot more to offer. It’s not just another automation tool for businesses that you must know. If you’re a medical practioner or an MSP who helps hospitals to fill their open temp to perm jobs, you would appreciate this SaaS-based cloud web application.

We suggest a demo, book now!

Request Demo

Our Latest Blogs