HR Management Careers in Healthcare

What Does an HR Professional in Healthcare Do

“HR” is a short name typically used to refer to human resources management. Human resources management is a vital and dynamic component of many organizations and companies and deals with all aspects of employee relations and administrative affairs. HR Management is involved in all steps of hiring, training, retention, firing, the selection and administration of healthcare and other benefits. Some HR professionals choose to be generalists and assist with all facets of HR, while others choose to be HR specialists and can focus on anything from compensation benefits to healthcare.

HR managers could have the opportunity work in all sorts of companies and organizations, and healthcare facilities are amongst the numerous organizations that now often contain a human resources department. The healthcare field is at the mercy of various unpredictable factors like the uncertain future of the new healthcare regulation in the form of the Affordable Care Act as well as the economic recession the effects of which are still widely being felt nationwide.

Much like HR managers in most organizations, it is the function of human resources to assist in all facets and phases of employee hiring, training and retention process. The HR manager in a healthcare facility or organization is responsible for the entire employment process, including advertising an open position and finding suitable candidates to interview.

One of the biggest challenges that consistently affect the healthcare field is the ability to retain qualified talent. The HR healthcare professional must address this problem head on as part of their job duties and must strive to create and enforce policies and procedures that attract and retain the top talent in the healthcare industry.

The HR healthcare professional is also tasked with the responsibility to make informed suggestions to management regarding salary and benefits for current and prospective employees. Salary and compensation is a vital factor in making the decision of whether to stay at a job and thus has a direct impact on retention.

The HR department in a healthcare organization is also responsible for screening the candidates, ensuring that new and current employees are performing up to grade, handling workplace disagreements, and establishing policies and procedures to ensure that health care services are provided in the most efficacious manner possible. It is the task of the HR department in a healthcare organization to deal with patient complaints in working to establish policies that will lead to better service and a lesser number of patient grievances.

The HR department in a health care organization also has the extremely critical role of staying on top of new laws, regulations, rules and developments and working alongside with the legal department to make sure that policies and procedures are executed in a way to minimize the potential of future litigation. Employee contracts are an integral component of this duty and HR managers must oversee the substance of the contracts to make sure they are not only in line with the policies and procedures of their organization, but that they are also in compliance will applicable laws, rules, and regulations.

Another aspect of legal compliance that the healthcare HR manager is tasked with is abiding by applicable consumer protection regulations having to do with the level of customer service legally mandated to be provided at healthcare organization and facilities. One of the biggest concerns for HR managers in the healthcare industry is meeting safety standards and creating a safe environment for both patients and staff.

According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics also known as the “BLS,” the median annual salary for human resources managers working in healthcare and social assistance in 2012 was $85,870.


About the Author: Svetlana Pham is a New Jersey based freelance writer. She has a BA in English from Rutgers University and an J.D. from New York Law School.

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