The Landscape of Healthcare Recruitment in 2023

24 October  •  Framework
The Landscape of Healthcare Recruitment in 2023

In recent years, the UK's healthcare recruitment landscape has undergone significant transformations, influenced by changing demographics, technological advancements, and the aftermath of global events. As we find ourselves in 2023, understanding the current challenges of this landscape is essential for both employers and healthcare professionals. This article aims to shed light on the key trends, challenges, and opportunities that shape the healthcare recruitment environment in the UK today.

What is the Current Landscape of Healthcare Recruitment in 2023?

From innovative new technology making recruitment more personalised to changes in the work-life balance, the world of healthcare has changed significantly over the past few years. To help you navigate these changes effectively, let’s take a look at the current landscape of healthcare recruitment in 2023:

Rising Demand and Ongoing Shortages

The National Health Service (NHS) has been under considerable pressure for years, with an ageing population demanding more services and the effects of the global pandemic stretching resources thinner than ever before. This has led to an unprecedented demand for healthcare professionals across various specialities ranging from radiography to psychological therapies. Despite increasing recruitment drives, there still exists a notable gap between the supply and demand of healthcare personnel.

While there is a general shortage across the board, specific roles like general practitioners, nurses specialising in intensive care, and mental health professionals are in particularly high demand. This specialised shortage means that these professionals often find themselves with numerous job opportunities and offers.

A Push for Locum Healthcare Workers to Address Staff Shortages

The significant shortage of workers in healthcare for a number of years in the UK has created a backlog. This issue has impacted multiple areas of healthcare, from biomedical sciences to general practitioners. To combat this, there has been a big push to use locum healthcare workers to support the industry and plug the gaps.

Now, more than ever, specialist locum agencies are being used to support the healthcare industry across a multitude of sectors. Healthcare institutions benefit from this by addressing their staff shortages and keeping a consistent level of patient care. It’s also presented a viable way for those who work in healthcare to enjoy a more dynamic way of working, filled with fresh opportunities to develop and specialise.

Technological Advancements and Digital Recruitment

The digital revolution in recruitment that started a few years ago has now become the norm. In 2023, virtual interviews and online job fairs are now quite commonplace, allowing healthcare institutions to reach a broader audience and candidates to explore opportunities without geographical constraints.

Artificial Intelligence is another area where technology can improve recruitment in healthcare. Many healthcare institutions now employ AI-driven tools to sift through applications, match candidates with suitable roles, and even predict which candidates are more likely to stay long-term. This not only streamlines the recruitment process but also ensures a higher success rate in candidate placement.

Innovations in Retention and Employee Engagement

In the competitive healthcare recruitment landscape of 2023, it's not just about attracting top talent, but also about retaining them. Institutions have realised that while a competitive salary is essential, it's not the only determining factor for job satisfaction. As a result, a myriad of non-traditional benefits are emerging. From on-site childcare facilities and pet-friendly policies to mental health days and expanded parental leave, institutions are thinking outside the box to ensure their employees feel valued and taken care of.

Changing Expectations of Healthcare Professionals

The COVID-19 pandemic brought to light the intense pressures faced by healthcare professionals. Although community-driven events like ‘Clap for Our Carers’ helped demonstrate how important those who work in healthcare are to society, their work is still challenging. Now, more than ever, these professionals are seeking roles that offer a better work-life balance. This has led to an increase in part-time positions, flexible working arrangements, and an emphasis on mental well-being in the workplace.

Continuous professional development is also a growing trend in healthcare that should be noted. Healthcare professionals in 2023 are keen to keep updating their skills and knowledge to suit their career goals. Institutions that offer regular training sessions, courses, and opportunities for growth are particularly attractive to potential employees.

The Role of Brexit and International Recruitment

The UK's decision to leave the European Union has had a notable impact on healthcare recruitment. The immediate aftermath saw a reduction in the number of EU nationals applying for roles within the NHS and other healthcare institutions. While the government has introduced measures to mitigate this, the effects are still felt in 2023.

To address the ongoing shortages, the UK has been actively promoting international recruitment drives. Countries like India, the Philippines, and Australia have become primary targets for sourcing healthcare professionals. The government has also streamlined visa processes to facilitate and encourage more international healthcare professionals to consider the UK as their working destination. This is particularly prevalent with the extension of the working holiday visa age brackets for New Zealand and Australia.

Emphasis on Diversity and Inclusion

There's a growing recognition that healthcare institutions need to reflect the diverse communities they serve. In 2023, there's a stronger push than ever for diversity in recruitment, ensuring that all backgrounds, ethnicities, and genders are well-represented in the healthcare workforce.

While there is a drive for diversity, challenges remain. Systemic issues, biases in recruitment, and lack of representation in leadership roles are issues still being tackled. However, awareness and proactive measures are in place, making it a focal point of recruitment strategies in 2023.

Remote Work and Recruitment

The possibility of remote and hybrid working has broadened the recruitment pool in healthcare. Institutions can now tap into talent that might be geographically distant but are still within the country. This means a professional living in Manchester could potentially work for a healthcare facility in London without the need to relocate. It's an enticing proposition for many, especially those who prioritise flexibility in their roles.

While remote work offers numerous benefits, it also presents challenges, especially in areas like training and onboarding. Virtual training sessions, though effective, can't entirely replicate the hands-on experience of on-site training, particularly crucial for many healthcare roles. Institutions have had to be innovative, blending online training with periodic in-person intensive sessions.

The Future of Healthcare Recruitment Holds Hope

The landscape of healthcare recruitment in the UK in 2023 is a blend of challenges and opportunities. While the demand for healthcare professionals remains high, advancements in technology and changes in professional expectations are reshaping the way recruitment is approached. Moreover, the emphasis on diversity, international recruitment, and the effects of Brexit present both hurdles and avenues for growth. As the sector continues to evolve, adaptability and forward-thinking will be key to ensuring the UK's healthcare system is staffed by skilled, dedicated, and diverse professionals.

If you’re looking for your next role in healthcare, take a look at our latest vacancies at Globe Locums today. Alternatively, if you're looking to grow your team, you can learn more about our workforce solutions, here.

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