Tips for Health Care Professionals During the Holidays

We know that the holidays can be a challenging time for those in the staffing industry. Cold and flu season makes a return, more people are making PTO requests, and kids have school breaks, which can complicate work and childcare.

Here are helpful tips to help you and your team prepare for the holidays and how Arbor Associates can help!

Set Realistic Expectations

Burnout is high in health care. In May of 2022, the Surgeon General went as far as to call the problem of burnout in health care a crisis. Burnout rates vary among health care professions and can be as high as 50-60% in some fields.

The holidays can increase symptoms and factors of burnout to it’s important to set reslistic expectations about how much your team can handle. As much as you might want your team to pick up extra or volunteer to cover each other’s shifts, they may not have the bandwidth to do this and provide quality patient care.

It’s important to engage in open conversations with staff. If you don’t already, schedule regular 1:1s monthly or more frequently if needed. Individual meetings allow you to check in and see how things are going. Are there issues in the department you aren’t aware of? Are there conflicts that should be addressed immediately? What is going well in the department?

This is all information you can you to gauge the health of your team. It will allow you to better understand who can cover open shifts and who is likely unable to right now, and you’ll be able to make a plan for coverage during the holiday season. If you anticipate needing extra help, it’s good to reach out to a staffing agency as soon as possible.

Embrace Outside Help

Balancing the needs of your team, the needs of the patients you care for, and your organization’s goals is challenging. Fortunately, there are resources to help. Whether you have ongoing staffing needs or will require extra staff around the holidays, Arbor Associates can help fill any gaps. With over forty years in the health care staffing industry, we understand how to find the right talent for your needs.

Organizations are often concerned about budgets and the expense of bringing in contracted staff but in reality, this is a move that can often save in the long term. Contracted staff help fill gaps that arise and they take some of the pressure and stress off of your existing staff. It’s also cheaper than recruiting and training a new employee, especially if the need is only around the holiday season.

One study explained how inadequate support, feeling understaffed, and increased workloads contributed to burnout. Bringing in additional staff through an experienced staffing agency like Arbor Associates can buffer burnout for your current staff and save you the time and money involved in last minute damage control, when someone inevitably calls out or burns out.

Bonus: Show Your Thanks

It’s helpful to acknowledge that the holiday season could get tough and that you’re all in this together. By hosting a holiday party, sending out cards or treats, or acknowledging employees who are putting in a lot of extra effort – you show your team that they’re important and that you appreciate them. This tip is a small but mighty action that when combined with the other two, usually leads to a successful holiday season at work for everyone.

If you’re planning ahead for holiday coverage and you’re ready to have the experienced team at Arbor Associates help with your staffing needs, fill out our talent request form to get started today. Things can get busy and holiday coverage is no joke – we’re here to help!