For Healthcare Workers, It's Not (Just) About Money

John Commins, for HealthLeaders Media , April 4, 2011

There are two kinds of surveys: Those that surprise you and tell you what you didn't know, and those that reaffirm what you already knew. Both have their value.

A survey of healthcare workers by Chicago-based recruiters CareerBuilder definitely falls into the second category and confirms what we already know. Namely, that healthcare workers –- like everyone else –- expect to earn a decent living for their labor. Salary and benefits are not, however, what attracted them to healthcare as a career choice, and they're not what make them happy. Remember that in this era of chronic staff shortages and turnover, and aggressive organized labor campaigns.

"Although salary and benefits are important, lower-cost factors, such as mentoring, career-path planning, training and support also greatly influence healthcare employees to apply to and stay at a job," Sanja Licina, senior director of Talent Intelligence at CareerBuilder, said in media release announcing the survey. "With healthcare organizations battling for top talent and facing high demand for positions, it's important for employers to take the temperature of their staff to best meet their needs, as well as keep a finger on the pulse of job seekers."

The survey -- Health Care Workers Reveal Workplace Challenges and Factors That Influence Turnover –- of 1,104 healthcare workers and 310 healthcare employers involved in hiring decisions was compiled between May 1 and June 30, 2010.

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