We use data and analytics to identify emerging hiring needs and pockets of turnover to avoid overextending employees and reduce overtime costs. To maintain our pipeline of essential personnel, we:
- Recruit qualified applicants proactively.
- Offer employees incentives to refer others in their networks with the right skills and cultural fit.
- Collaborate with high school and university administrators to educate students about the benefits of a healthcare career.
- Offer scholarships and reimburse tuition.
Once hired, new employees take a cultural assessment to help us place them in roles that align with their professional passions, values and beliefs with Texas Health. We have found that the more aligned employees are, the better they meet our consumers' needs and expectations.
Additionally, we promote from within whenever possible because our employees have already proven themselves. They know our company and culture. This approach boosts morale, increases productivity and shows that we care about their career progression.
Retaining valuable employees is essential to preserving institutional knowledge, maintaining productivity and keeping up our high-performing culture. This also controls hiring and development costs.
To enhance retention, we welcome employees of various cultures and backgrounds, give them opportunities to reach their career potential, recognize their contributions and provide competitive compensation and benefits. We identify improvement opportunities by using data analytics and soliciting continuous feedback.
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In this Together
In March, Texas Health leaders made the difficult decision to suspend all elective surgeries and visits to put the safety of our people first and free up resources to care for those impacted by COVID-19. As a system, some employees were left with few patients.
While other systems were furloughing employees or laying them off, we told our people that was not our plan. We continued their benefits and helped employees fill much-needed roles at hospitals to free up time for caregivers to focus on patient care.
"We felt that this was the right thing to do, not only because our employees need to feed their families, but also because it creates a sense of loyalty," said Carla Dawson, chief people officer. "We want to make sure that when we need them, like when there's a surge, they are there for us. This is a together thing."
It Could Take My Life
As the pandemic rages across the U.S. and some healthcare workers nationwide even rethink their beloved professions, a young respiratory therapist at Texas Health Presbyterian Hospital Dallas heads to the front lines every day despite a chronic, progressive lung disease that places her at high risk for serious illness or even death if she is infected with COVID-19.
"It could easily take my life," said Breanna Pierce, 26, who has cystic fibrosis. "In the beginning, I had thought of taking short-term disability — that's what my doctors advised. But I wanted to help out as much as I could. It's what I signed up for. As an RT with cystic fibrosis, I am able to relate to my patients on a different level. I know what it feels like when you can't catch your breath and the anxiety that comes with that."
Before and after Pierce cares for some of the hospital's sickest patients, she takes breathing treatments — in the car, on the way to work and on the way home. She's had to wear oxygen during shifts a few times. She takes 55 pills a day to combat various aspects of cystic fibrosis. But caring for patients at Texas Health Dallas — where she was born — is where she wants to be despite the risks.
"I've spent far too long in some of my patients' rooms talking to them and trying to bring them hope by sharing my story and empathizing with them when they have felt completely hopeless and scared," she said. "The hospital can be a very lonely place. Nothing makes me happier than being able to make a difference in peoples' lives."