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Ann Arbor Spark

July 2, 2019

Recruiting Healthcare Talent in Livingston County

In the industry-agnostic “race for talent,” companies are pushed to creative recruiting approaches to make competitive hiring decisions and fill open positions. This trend is particularly evident in the healthcare industry, as services continue to grow in demand and changes in technology require up-to-date training and adaptive workers. Data and research on the demographics of talent and future employment projections help human resources professionals and administrative staff determine where and how recruiting efforts should be focused. The following analysis uses data to provide guidance practitioners can use to address the talent shortage in healthcare workers.

Who works in healthcare in Livingston County?

The healthcare industry consists of hundreds of potential occupations, many of which require certifications or advanced degrees.

83% of healthcare workers in Livingston County are women.

Eighty-three percent of healthcare workers in Livingston County are female; of the top fifteen healthcare occupations, the number of men exceeded women in only two categories: Dentists and Physicians and Surgeons.

Sixty-seven percent of healthcare workers are between the ages of 25 – 54, with the highest concentration of employees between the ages of 25 – 34. There is a large variation in the average age of healthcare workers depending on the occupation. This is likely due to the different training and credentials required for different occupations.

While 96 percent of Livingston County residents are white, 82 percent of healthcare workers in Livingston County are white, indicating that healthcare is a field that attracts diverse candidates.

What are the most in-demand occupations and industries in healthcare?

An analysis of job posting data reveals the top in-demand healthcare occupations and sub-industries. This information is helpful for recruiters to understand what level of market competition they are facing.

In Livingston County, the top in-demand healthcare occupations (based on the number of job postings) are registered nurses, medical assistants, pharmacy technicians, nursing assistants, and home health aids. These five occupations make up 56 percent of all healthcare related job postings in Livingston County.

Using job posting data, an analysis of the top sub-industries in healthcare reveals that general medical and surgical hospitals, home health care services, employment placement agencies, office administrative services, and colleges, universities, and professional schools. These five sub-industry categories make up 48 percent of all job postings in the healthcare industry

How many graduates are part of Livingston County’s healthcare talent pool?

Job posting data and current employment data helps to reveal what skills and credentials are needed in Livingston County. This information is valuable to human resources professionals who invest in workforce training and recruit from local colleges and universities.

Home health aides is one of the top occupations by number of job postings, and also one of the top occupations by number of current employees. Often, jobs as home health care aides do not require a certification and recruiting can be done using a broader range of potential candidates.

However, other top occupations from this analysis do reveal a need to work with local training providers to ensure a consistent talent pipeline. Given demand for Registered Nurses, Physical Therapists, Medical Assistants, Pharmacy Technicians, Licensed Practical Nurses, and Nursing Assistants, local training for these programs is critical.

Understanding the talent pipeline that exists will help to determine recruitment targets and workforce availability for Human Resource Professionals.

Within a 50-mile radius of Livingston County, there were 158 Physical Therapy graduates, of which 88 graduated from the University of Michigan Flint, 37 graduated from Oakland University, and 33 graduated from Wayne State University.

In the same geographical area, there were 3,410 graduates of Registered Nursing programs. Of these graduates, 1,176 completed an associate degree and 2,085 completed a bachelor’s degree (the remaining 149 students finished their education with a graduate degree or higher). Of the schools offering programs for registered nurses, the most graduates came from Oakland University (392 graduates), University of Michigan-Flint (343 graduates), University of Detroit Mercy (342 graduates), Michigan State University (278 graduates), and Eastern Michigan University (262 graduates). Henry Ford College graduated the largest number of registered nurses with an associate degree (232 graduates).

For pharmacy technicians, there were only 39 graduates within a 50-mile radius of Livingston County — indicating that there is likely high demand for additional pharmacy technician training locally (there were 142 job postings for pharmacy technicians in 2018). Of the 39 Pharmacy technician graduates, 36 graduated from Baker College, two graduated from Oakland Community College, and one student graduated from Jackson College.

There were 166 graduates with medical assistant certifications from colleges/universities within a 50-mile radius of Livingston County. This data does not include medical assistant certifications through training centers, such as Ross Medical Education. Of the 166 graduates, 114 are alumni of Baker College, 31 attended Macomb Community College, 16 attended Jackson College, and two graduates were from Oakland Community College.

(Data is not available for licensed practical nurses and nursing assistants.)

Conclusion

Healthcare continues to be one of Livingston County’s most in-demand industries, even as employers face challenges with burnout, retention, and recruitment. While there were 1,779 job postings for healthcare workers in 2018, many specific occupational categories did not produce enough talent to fill local vacancies. It is important for employers to take a proactive, data-driven approach in their recruitment strategies to find the best talent to work for them.