Our team of experienced healthcare recruiters play in this space all day.

Check back often for their insights on the industry, hiring, & what’s to come.

Childhood Cancer

Go Gold For Childhood Cancer This Month

Childhood Cancer

As the manager of the healthcare division for Johnson Search Group, I am asked often why we specialize in recruiting in Healthcare and why we are so successful. The answer is simple; it’s because we care about what makes an impact on people and communities. Continuous research, keeping up to date on trends, and more importantly, the people they affect are what gives this department the energy and focus on being simply the best in the industry. One of these subjects is near and dear to my heart because of my own personal experience, childhood cancer.

Now is the perfect time to highlight the tremendous impact our clients and candidates make on those directly affected as September is Childhood Cancer Awareness Month. In the United States, one child is diagnosed with cancer every 3 minutes. And even if you have not been directly affected by a childhood cancer diagnosis, the struggle has unfortunately become all too prevalent in our modern society.

The Facts About Childhood Cancer

According to recent reports from the American Childhood Cancer Organization, 1 in every 285 children in the US will be diagnosed with cancer before their 20th birthday, and 20% will not survive it. This devastating diagnosis is the number one disease killer of children in the United States today. And for those who do survive, the road ahead is not easy. The National Pediatric Cancer Foundation states that “more than 95% of childhood cancer survivors will have a significant health-related issue by the time they are 45 years of age.”

Childhood Cancer

What Can I Do? 

The first and most important step to assist in making a difference is to get informed. Even with advances in medicine over the years, childhood cancer rates have been rising slightly for the past few decades. It is important to discover the known risk factors and understand how an early diagnosis can improve the chances of cure or remission and increase the odds of survival.

Speaking as someone who partners with rural hospitals throughout the United States, a great way to show your support is through your community. Organize a fundraiser, donate to your preferred local organization, or volunteer your time at your community’s healthcare facility.

From Helpless to Hopeful

As a person who has been touched directly by childhood cancer as I tragically lost my nephew at the very young age of 8 from an inoperable malignant brain tumor; I have learned that through his death, his life can still have meaning. Since then, I’ve found that it is how we choose to educate ourselves and continue to honor and celebrate those who have fought so hard. We can continue to pursue better outcomes through knowledge, preparedness, and resolving to make a positive impact in the name of those lost. Together, we need to keep working until the job is done, to one day find the secret to increase the survivability rate to 100%, or better yet, stop childhood cancer entirely.

For my team, it is the knowledge that every single candidate we place could be that difference, and that means everything.

Rural Health

Keeping Rural Heath Alive

Rural Health

When looking at rural health, there is no denying our rural hospitals are suffering. Every day, articles are being posted online on the effects of rural healthcare facilities closing and their communities. But what about all the medical needs of all the farmers, cattle ranchers, and other rural residents? Where are the people looking for peaceful quiet places and fresh air?

They’re leaving in herds

More and more people are moving out of rural areas. As a healthcare recruiter in Kansas, this is my number one selling point to my candidates: Living in a community where everybody knows your name. How nice is it to call Susie down the street to pick up your kids from school if your day has simply gotten away from you? I even know of communities that bus the kids around for free to activities and daycare while their parents work. Isn’t that what we are supposed to be doing as humans? Forming communities, being active within them, and lending a hand? 

I recently read an article where a wife lost her husband. He had fallen, and due to the recent closure of their nearest hospital in Kansas, air Ambulances couldn’t retrieve him. So, he was forced to be driven by an ambulance 90 miles to the nearest neurology center where he sadly succumbed to his fall. The medical and emotional consequences just don’t seem right.

However, living rural is glorious. I would say that over 80 percent of the candidates I talk to are thrilled to move to a place that makes them feel part of a community. It’s honestly the easiest selling point. Rural areas are where friends can meet for coffee before work, have neighborhood BBQs, watch your kids freely ride their bikes, and enjoy a fresh breath of air.

Combatting the decline of rural health

Some rural healthcare facilities do not even have obstetric units (family health doctors). This puts mothers and babies at a higher risk for complications. It is apparent over at Coffeyville Regional Medical Center by their Facebook page that they are proud of their doctor, mommies, babies, and their clinics. Kearny County Hospital recruits early career family physicians and flies in a maternal-fetal medicine specialist once a month to help with high-risk pregnancies. Everyone at Kearny takes such pride in their facility and their community. This is what will keep rural healthcare alive. 

Work with a recruiter who’s passionate about Rural Health

Here at Johnson Search Group, we get rural. In fact, our SVP Perry Paden grew up in Lenora, Kansas so there is a soft spot for Kansas right here in the office. So, we get the challenges rural health is facing and the effect it is having on communities everywhere.

Call me, Stephanie Brown. I will find healthcare professionals that want to contribute to your communities. It’s my passion and my job to support all rural healthcare facilities in Kansas. Reach out to my team and me at 205.588.8075, and we will get you the talent your community needs.

Rural Healthcare, Healthcare Jobs

3 Benefits To Working In Rural Healthcare

Rural Healthcare, Healthcare Jobs

It’s no secret that rural healthcare in America faces a wide set of challenges. However, it remains true that these organizations are a vital contributor to the wellbeing of our greater communities. At Johnson Search Group, we specialize in recruiting for these essential facilities. Along the way, we’ve discovered a long list of why healthcare professionals should consider taking their expertise to rural communities. Here are just a handful of reasons why you should make the move for the next step in your career!

Ability work across disciplines

In smaller facilities, healthcare professionals have the ability to work throughout multiple departments. This allows them not only to gain exposure to different practices and methods but also to share their unique skills and experiences throughout the organization. Furthermore, rural health employees often gain education from experiences unique to such a setting, such as wild animal attacks.

Better work-life balance

Compared with large hospitals, rural health organizations can often offer better work-life balance to their staff. Rural America boasts a lower cost of living. Additionally, you’ll find access to a host of activities like outdoor recreation and community events.

While there may be a greater time commitment, rural health understands and emphasizes the importance of family and community. With a local support system and a dedication to flexibility in caring for patients, many employees in rural health feel that the occupation is extremely rewarding. Ultimately, “healthcare workers who have a higher work-life balance reported a better safety culture and less burnout,” according to a study by BMJ Quality & Safety.

Opportunity to interact with the local community

Speaking of the local community, people who work in rural health have a much greater chance of seeing the impact they make. Additionally, these organizations are absolutely essential to the areas they serve. The medical care that Critical Access Hospitals and other rural healthcare facilities provide is an incredible gift to the community. When small communities have less access to advanced, specialized care, every emergency and medical service available becomes more and more essential.

Partner with our Healthcare Team

Rural healthcare is our passion and we partner with dozens of wonderful healthcare facilities throughout the nation. If you’re looking to make a transition into a rural healthcare organization, reach out to our Healthcare recruiting team. Whether you are a Clinical Coordinator of Care or an RN Case Manager, we have numerous opportunities in great communities. Reach out to us today!

Hiring Urgency In Healthcare

Hiring Urgency In Healthcare

Hiring Urgency In Healthcare

Let me see if I understand this correctly…

Recently we were given a job order for a Director-level role with a rural hospital. (This type of organization and community happens to be a specialty of Johnson Search Group, as we are passionate about hiring in rural health!) The leadership team told us that the position has been open for two years. They have had other firms work on it with no success, and they would love our help.

Using our process, we were able to locate an excellent candidate in just a few days. This qualified candidate was within driving distance of the hospital, so they didn’t require relocation. They had all the skillset and licensure that they were looking for. Additionally, this was precisely the ideal position for which the candidate would change jobs. The candidate was excited, we were excited, and we immediately submitted their resume to their HR department. The response… “Thank you so much, but we have an Interim in place until September, so we are not scheduling interviews for that position yet.” In the infamous words of my Senior Vice President Perry Paden, “…reeeaaallly?”

The Continued Struggle In Hiring

Sadly, this is common. It is no wonder that many critical roles remain open! When the ‘top of the inbox’ drives priorities as opposed to the ‘get ‘em while they’re hot,’ organizations struggle to secure top talent in this current market. According to the Rural Health Organization Hub: “Rural communities often face challenges in maintaining an adequate health workforce, making it difficult to provide needed patient care or to meet staffing requirements for their facilities. Therefore, rural healthcare facilities should be proactive and strategic about recruiting and retaining personnel.”

What’s The Potential Impact?

Consider also the added cost of contract staffing to budgets of already strained rural community hospitals. When critical roles go unfilled, and patient’s lives are in the balance, you resort to hiring interims and travelers. This has a significant effect on the profitability of the organization. A recent study showed that 78% of healthcare leaders said reducing staffing costs was a significant concern. Combining budget shortfalls, staffing shortages, burnout for overworked healthcare workers, lack of local talent, and the increased needs and demands on the services in these rural communities, the overall impact to rural communities is staggering. The unfortunate and all too common result could be closure and lack of access to healthcare for the approximately 60 million people who currently reside in rural communities in the United States.

When there are options to address shortages and costs that can be as simple as responding in a timely fashion, why not take it? If you need a better process or better results, I can help!

healthcare jobs

The Top 3 In-Demand Healthcare Jobs

healthcare jobs

As a Healthcare Recruiter, I witness industry changes every day. We have dozens of great clients that rely on our expertise to fill their most critical positions. With the job market at an all-time high, employers must adjust their hiring processes to attract new candidates. My team and I have noticed several trends in the marketplace concerning the most in-demand positions in the healthcare industry. These are the three hottest healthcare jobs we are seeing currently!

Nurse Managers

From Inpatient Managers to ICU Managers, and even OR Nurse Managers, these are just a couple of nurse leadership roles that will be in high demand shortly. Over the next decade, roughly half a million registered nurses are set to retire. Nurse Managers are experienced professionals who bridge the gap between bedside care and administrative roles. They are also creating a professional environment where they are not only able to contribute to patient outcomes but also grow professionally within their career.

Case Managers/Utilization Review Managers

Most organizations are looking for Case Managers and Utilization Review Managers in all areas from hospital, hospice, and home care, to name a few. Case Managers try and find the most efficient and economical way of meeting the patients’ needs with the available resources. Just as important, the Utilization Review Manager ensures the patient’s health insurance company understands what’s happening during the patient’s treatment and works to prevent claim denials. Which is just as crucial to the provider and the patient. Thus, I believe every HR team needs at least one Case Manager/Utilization Review Manager position for their healthcare organization.

Information Technology

There are so many roles in IT that are in demand from Network Administrators to Sr. Application Analysts and Informaticists… The list goes on and on. Moreover, with the new Executive Order on price transparency, IT positions are just one area that will need to increase manpower. If you have been thinking about an IT career in healthcare, now is a great time to pursue it. If you are an Application Analyst, we are always working on these roles, so get in touch with me and my team if you are looking for your next opportunity!

We have a steady pipeline of candidates ready to transition into a new career path. So, if your Healthcare organization has any critical vacancies, please reach out to my team and me today!

The Key To Success In Rural Health: Positivity

Rural Health, Hospital, Positivity

As a recruiter, I talk to dozens of leaders in rural health every day. One of the things that sets healthcare facilities apart most in a sea of small communities struggling to keep up, is their positive mindset. When I call to learn more about their organization or share a great candidate looking to move to their area, the discussions are different. Their tone and happiness on the other end of the phone are absolutely contagious.

My first experience with the true difference positivity can make was actually in healthcare about 10 years ago. At the time, I was faced with the unthinkable. However, two leaders in childhood cancer taught me that positivity can actually have a significant effect on outcomes. They looked me straight in the face at 8 months pregnant and told me that my two-year-old daughter had a very aggressive form of acute lymphoblastic leukemia. But their next words are ones I’ll never forget: “Stephanie, as long as you stay positive, the outcome will be much more favorable.” So, I put my trust in these doctors with some of the highest success rates in the world. I avoided the statistics and continued to empower a positive mindset. Here I am almost 10 years later with both my girls and I couldn’t be more grateful.

Partnering With Rural Health

This experience completely changed my outlook. Now, I am so excited to come to work every day and have the opportunity to make an impact on the lives of my clients, candidates, and ultimately, their patients. I love connecting with rural health facilities every day and have noticed a direct correlation between how engaging a hospital is over the phone, and how passionate they are about their jobs and local communities. This then makes it easier for me to sell these remote opportunities to the best talent on the market. When I’m able to convey my clients’ positive outlook and happiness at work, candidates can’t wait to work there.

For example, one of the great rural hospitals in Kansas is experiencing tremendous growth. They are beyond delighted about the construction of their new facility and you can even watch a live feed online of their progress. This growth is impressive despite the ongoing struggles that rural healthcare facilities face every day. Moreover, it’s probably due in large part to the entire team’s dedication and passion for their jobs.

The positive mindset in healthcare is real. And it consists of trust, patience, comfort, and kindness. I like to picture myself in one of these rural communities that I recruit for. I imagine their attitude if I lived there when I learned that my daughter was sick. As I prepared for the toughest journey of my life, it would have been the exact reassurance I needed.

If you find that your rural healthcare facility is missing an enthusiastic leader or a passionate team member, contact me and my team! We have the experience to find the talent you need.

healthcare trends

Healthcare Trends to Watch in 2019

healthcare trends

We are officially halfway through the year and the healthcare industry has been scorching with growth. In June 2019 alone, there were 35,000 jobs added to the U.S. healthcare industry. And over the last 12 months, the industry added a staggering 403,000 jobs, making healthcare the largest employer in the country. Now that it’s finally the 3rd quarter of 2019, here are some healthcare trends to watch for in the second half of the year.

Increased healthcare spending

Throughout the last decade, healthcare spending has continued to skyrocket. Between 2013 and 2017, global healthcare spending increased at an annual rate of 2.9 percent. However, over the next four years, global healthcare spending is projected to increase at an annual rate of 5.4 percent between 2018 and 2022, according to Deloitte.

This increase in spending along with shrinking hospital margins are pushing healthcare organizations into mergers and acquisitions. In fact, in 2018, there were 1,182 mergers and acquisitions, up 14.4 percent from 2017. That’s the largest amount of M&A deals in a single year. And in 2019, this trend will not slow down as healthcare organizations continue to consolidate organizations in order to grow with strength.

Rural healthcare continues to struggle

Despite rural communities measuring approximately 62 million Americans, access to healthcare services is becoming increasingly scarce for rural residents. Sadly, more and more rural healthcare facilities continue to close. Since 2010, 107 rural hospitals have closed, according to the University of North Carolina Cecil G. Sheps Center for Health Services Research. And according to a recent report from Navigant, nearly 21 percent of rural hospitals are at high risk of closing.

This is even more troubling when you think about the low physician-to-rural resident ratio. To illustrate, the patient-to-primary care physician ratio in rural areas is only 39.8 physicians per 100,000 rural residents. However, the ratio is much greater in urban areas, measuring in at 53.3 physicians per 100,000 residents. In other words, rural residents have significantly smaller access to healthcare services than those living near cities. As a result, rural residents must make the commute, which in some cases can be hours, to the nearest physicians. Quicker access to medical treatment drastically improves survivability and speed of diagnoses, and thus, saves lives. As more rural healthcare facilities close, more and more rural residents fail to get the medical treatment they need.

How rural healthcare can combat these trends

However, many rural healthcare organizations are finding ways to buck these struggles by finding new leadership that will facilitate growth. A great example of this is Meeker Memorial Hospital in Litchfield, MN. For years, Meeker Memorial struggled with shrinking margins, outdated technologies, and a failure to attract great leadership to the hospital. However, Meeker Memorial’s Board of Directors hired a talented CEO, Mark Madden, who had a growth-oriented mindset with an eye for politics. In Madden’s seven-year tenure, he restored Meeker Memorial back to profitability and generated funding for a massive expansion of the hospital.

In other words, with the right leadership and talent, rural healthcare facilities are overcoming these hurdles. This is one of the many reasons that we are passionate about partnering with rural health systems. Our healthcare team of recruiters specializes in rural health and can help you find talent, like Madden, to help fight the struggles rural health is facing. We understand how essential it is for you to have the best non-clinical staff on the market in order to serve your communities and stay strong.

Get the talent your team needs

These healthcare trends have no signs of slowing down in the second half of 2019. If your organization is feeling the pressure to find new talent, reach out to our expert team of healthcare recruiters. Our team specializes in recruiting for rural healthcare facilities, and we understand your struggles and can help you source the talent you need to keep your operations running smoothly. Contact a recruiter today and let us help you find the candidates you need to keep up with the ever-changing world of healthcare.

data analysts

Why Data Analysts Are Important In Healthcare

data analysts

In today’s modern age, there is an increased focus on the processes and the technology of quality. Many organizations already have data architects and data analysts. In fact, by the end of 2019, 50 percent of healthcare organizations will have dedicated resources for accessing and analyzing data. These roles use powerful analytic technologies to provide insights to decision-makers. As a result, this empowers frontline staff and analysts to collaborate using data that drives value and improves processes.

The overwhelming majority of healthcare workers will never directly write reports or analyze data. They rely on someone else to pull data, analyze it, and produce a report. With all of the changes in Healthcare, it is important to stay on top of patient satisfaction. Leaders of organizations recognize that poor patient satisfaction ratings lead to reduced reimbursements, which inevitably affects the bottom line. Organizations who leverage these professionals and technologies increases patient satisfaction and employee engagement.

Healthcare has experienced phenomenal growth in data

The field for healthcare data analysis only continues to grow. The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) predicts that careers related to data gathering, data interpretation, data storage, and the use of electronic health records are expected to grow by more than 15% through 2024. That’s twice as fast as the overall growth rate estimates for all other professions.

Data analysts get down to the heart of what matters. For example, the healthcare industry now captures demographic data as well as direct and indirect cost of delivering that care. It not only captures how patients feel about their care, but also a host of ancillary data like income, family history, and genetics. However, technology can only do so much. It’s necessary to have critical thinkers to process that data and produce reports detailing the critical information needed to help with a variety of clinical, operations, and financial decisions and how they affect patient outcomes.

If your healthcare organization is one of the hundreds seeking talented data analysts, or are looking to grow your career in this field, reach out to me and my healthcare team. We’re partnering with multiple hospitals to fill critical needs for this flourishing profession.

Timing Is Everything In Healthcare Hiring

Healthcare has an inherent nature of change. It is and always will be a huge platform for change, simply due to the basic tenants and morphology of disease. In addition, breakthroughs in research, population health concerns, new physiological discoveries, and battling terminal illnesses spark continuous change.

Qualified candidates are a huge part of this equation for success. The healthcare industry continues to grow. Growing shortages in trained and certified professionals and turnover rates still drive financial bottom lines significantly in one direction or the other. In the months of March and April alone, the turnover rate in healthcare exceeded 1.1 million! With an average cost of turnover of $50k, that number is a staggering $56,100,000,000 to healthcare organizations over a two-month time period.

What sparks changes in employment?

The most common reasons for a change in employment is often not even career advancement. I often hear it is company culture, new leadership, or changes in state regulations or community environment. The important aspect of all four of these reasons is that they are, for the most part, completely beyond one person’s control. If you experience any of these changes and they are to your liking, great! If not, it’s time to make a change in your career and/or location.

So, you made the decision to make a change. You update your resume and field the first call from a recruiter or hesitantly hit ‘apply’ on a job you see in a great location. The gauntlet has been thrown! The next steps are pretty predictable: First phone interview, second phone or video, and finally an onsite. This final step will determine fit – if you like them, they like you, and the location is ‘all it’s cracked up to be.’

What happens if a wrench gets thrown in your plans?

Unfortunately… life can get in the way. You get a call from a family member that there is a serious health issue, or you have put your house on the market and you don’t get five offers from the first showings as your realtor promised. Maybe you even find out you have an extra month or two on your lease that you did not figure into the cost factor of relocation. Or you have a family member that has a current issue that needs your support, and… Well, you can fill in the blanks.

Now don’t get me wrong, these are all valid concerns and issues that give pause for consideration; after all, family is everything in my book. However, how does that change the nature of the situation that caused you to look in the first place? Will putting off pursuing your career change provide any sort of solution? If you put off an interview or offer, will that change the atmosphere of your current employment situation or community conundrum?

There are some valid reasons to turn down an offer. Although situations outside of your control, that can be managed via telephone or travel on your time off, are not on the list. Bluntly, that’s what airports are for. Fearing change as a reason to postpone what is best for you and your future is not advisable. My advice is to do yourself a favor: When you make the decision that it’s time for a change, see it through. You owe it to yourself and the healthcare industry where you can make a difference. If you made the decision to make a career change, reach out to me or my healthcare team. We can help you make the change you deserve.

job market

How Good is Today’s Job Market?

job market

You’ve read the news and seen the reports. The labor market is competitive. But is today’s job market really as strong as people think it is? The short answer is yes! Here’s a brief overview of today’s job market and how to navigate it if you’re an employer.

According to LinkedIn’s May Workforce Report, gross hiring in the United States was 7.4 percent higher in April 2019 than in the year prior. And we are also experiencing an unemployment rate of 3.6 percent, which is a near 50-year low.

The labor market is really strong, and some industries are more competitive than others. To put this in perspective, the three industries Johnson Search Group specializes in (Mining & Heavy Industrial, Banking, and Healthcare) have all seen tremendous growth over the last 12 months.


The Mining & Energy industry has come back to life in recent years. Over the last year alone, the number of unemployed mining professionals has been cut in half from 39,000 to roughly 17,000 people. Moreover, year-over-year growth in the Mining & Energy industry is 4.9 percent. And over the last two months, the growth has been 2.2 percent, from April to May. In April 2019, the unemployment rate in Mining was just 2.4 percent, well below the nation’s average.

Banking & Finance

In April 2019, there were 12,000 Banking & Finance jobs created. And over the last 12 months, 110,000 jobs were generated in the industry. Average hourly earnings in the industry have also risen over the past year from $34.46 an hour to $35.53. The unemployment rate in this sector is well below the national average at 2.1 percent. The Banking & Finance industry has a 7.7 percent growth year-over-year.


263,000 Healthcare jobs were added in April 2019, overshadowing the average monthly gains of 213,000 for the last 12 months. Not surprisingly, the Healthcare industry has continued to grow rapidly over the year. The industry experienced year-over-year growth of 7.5 percent over the last 12 months. And this growth will keep climbing. Healthcare became the largest U.S. employer in 2018, and by 2026, the industry will add nearly 4.0 million jobs.

How to navigate this market

With how competitive the market is, it can be difficult to find the talent your team needs. It’s a candidate’s market and employers cannot afford to drag their feet when making hiring decisions. You must move quickly to ensure you secure top talent.

Have you ever thought of the costs incurred from a vacancy on your team? There are several hidden costs associated with unfilled positions at your organization. According to SHRM, the average open position takes 42 days to fill at a cost of $4,129. The cost of vacancies can certainly add up as good employees take advantage of this hot job market and move onto other opportunities. Many of our clients are incurring these indirect costs and don’t even realize the financial impact of unfilled positions.

If you find yourself in this same boat, have you thought of partnering with a recruiter? A recruiting company, like Johnson Search Group, will help you find the qualified talent your team needs quickly and help you mitigate these costs. We have a huge network of great candidates ready to make a move and make an immediate impact on your organization. Let’s have a conversation and help you fill some of those vacant positions.