Tag Archives: health care industry arizona

AZ hospitals, how to attract top talent, AZ Business Magazine July/August 2011

Arizona Hospitals Share Strategies For Recruiting, Retaining Top Performers

The health care industry in Arizona managed to hold its own during the worst of the recession. But the challenges aren’t over yet.

Human resources experts have been warning companies across industries about the next big wave of change as the economic recovery takes hold: retaining the top talent that helped a company survive.

In good economic times, the health care industry often was faced with shortages of nurses and other professionals, so it’s an old hand at devising ways of attracting and retaining talent. Arizona Business Magazine asked four hospitals and health care systems about how they attract the best.

Abrazo Health Care

Currently, Abrazo Health Care’s website is the No. 1 way candidates are found when applying for an open position. Additionally, Abrazo Health Care utilizes social media sites such as LinkedIn and Facebook to attract and hire future employees. A large number of new hires comes from referrals within the organization.

Other recruitment efforts include the new graduate development program, a unique opportunity available to 100 nursing graduates per year. This competitive program gives new nurses 12 weeks of education and training to become an acute care nurse at an Abrazo Health Care facility. New graduates entering a specialty area also will be part of a bridge program for additional training.

Another opportunity available is the nurse-specialty training program for current nurses, which is offered four times per year. Nurses can apply to receive training to transition to a specialized nursing position in the operating room, emergency room or intensive care unit.

All applicants must complete a web-based interview developed in partnership with the Gallup Organization. The assessment helps to ensure a candidate will align with the cultural environment at Abrazo Health Care.

Abrazo Health Care employs more than 5,000 people. Currently, there are 400 positions available. Abrazo Health Care offers competitive salaries, health benefits and tuition reimbursement.

[stextbox id="grey"]Carmen Hern is regional manager of talent acquisition at Abrazo Health Care, abrazohealth.com. [/stextbox]

Banner Health

Banner Health recruits talent through strategic work force planning such as:

  • Targeted media events
  • Academic relationships
  • Social media
  • Banner Health’s website


Banner’s approach to recruiting top talent aligns with the strategies of the organization by emphasizing Banner’s vision on patient care. Its hiring incentives are centered on total rewards compensation.

The Banner journey begins with a potential employee’s first experience (the website, at an event, videos or even as a patient). Once they have joined Banner, there is an ongoing, one-year, onboarding program. Throughout their time at Banner, there are opportunities for learning, coaching and developing employees’ careers.

There are three main reasons an employee stays at Banner are:

  • The relationship with their manager
  • The people they work with
  • Learning and growth opportunities


In addition, employees have a choice in their selection of benefits. They also get to participate in a 401k plan, life insurance, food discounts, transportation discounts, and childcare at some facilities. We look at each employee’s needs to determine which benefits are best for them

Banner prides itself on having created an environment of innovation and teamwork. It offers opportunities for employees to spread their wings, in addition to pay for performance. There is compensation for all when Banner meets and exceeds goals in the areas of patient satisfaction, financial performance and employee retention.

Recognizing that Banner Health is competing with many other health care systems in Arizona for quality employees, the company tries to stay in tune with the community. Banner may have more hospitals than anyone else, but we have to pay attention because we know there are other good hospitals out there.
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Shyrl Johnston is senior director of talent acquisition at Banner Health, www.bannerhealth.com.[/stextbox]

Phoenix Children’s Hospital

Phoenix Children’s strategy to attract new talent includes expanding space, growing programs and services, and aggressive recruiting.

Phoenix Children’s continues to grow and expand, thus offering exciting new prospects for top talent in the health care industry. An 11-story patient tower, which opened in June, will raise the hospital’s bed count from 345 rooms to 626 private rooms by early 2012. The hospital also added 96 PCIU/CICU rooms, 12 operating rooms, new services and programs, innovative research supported by leading clinical trials, and advanced education/training for clinical providers.

Collaborations and partnerships with Arizona State University, University of Arizona, Mayo Clinic, Banner Good Samaritan, and a Strategic Alliance with St. Joseph’s Hospital & Medical Center also add jobs and opportunities for attracting the best and brightest.

The hospital’s six Centers of Excellence also are growing. Phoenix Children’s is the only Level 1 Pediatric Trauma Center in Arizona; the Children’s Heart Center is recognized as one of the nation’s best; there is the Phoenix Children’s Center for Pediatric Othopaedic Surgery; the Newborn Intensive Care Unit, with 110 licensed beds, is one of the largest NICUs in the country; the Center for Cancer and Blood Disorders is Arizona’s only fully dedicated facility of its kind; and the Children’s Neuroscience Institute provides comprehensive care for children with neurological and behavioral disorders.

For the past four years, Phoenix Children’s Hospital has been steadily and aggressively increasing recruitment of nationally known physicians and superior staff. Medical staff at the hospital has increased to include more than 1,000 pediatric specialists with 40 pediatric specific specialties.

Recent prominent additions, to name a few, include: David Adelson, MD, a renowned neurosurgeon, recruited to lead the Children’s Neuroscience Institute at Phoenix Children’s; Richard Towbin, MD, a top neuro-radiologist who has served at children’s hospitals in Philadelphia, Pittsburgh, Cincinnati and Michigan; Lee Segal, MD, who came from Hershey Children’s to initiate the Center for Pediatric Orthopaedic Surgery; Heidi Dalton, MD, section chief critical care, who was recruited from Children’s Medical Center in Washington, DC; and Tamir Miloh, MD, a hepatologist recruited from Mt. Sinai, NY, who will create and lead Arizona’s first pediatric liver transplant center.

[stextbox id="grey"]Jane Walton is head of media relations at Phoenix Children’s Hospital, www.phoenixchildrens.com.[/stextbox]

UA Healthcare

UA Healthcare is a private, nonprofit health-care entity located in Tucson. It was formed by the merger of two highly respected and well-established organizations: University Medical Center (UMC) and University Physicians Healthcare (UPH). The organization consists of the largest physician practice plan in Arizona, including a Health Plan Division, two academic medical centers and Southern Arizona’s only Level 1 Trauma Center.

UA Healthcare employs more than 6,000 people and is ranked one of the top 10 employers in Southern Arizona. University Medical Center was the first hospital in Arizona to earn the Magnet designation — the American Nurses Association’s highest honor for nursing excellence. The designation recognizes hospitals that provide the best nursing care and a supportive, professional environment. As the only academic medical center in Arizona, UMC offers many opportunities for professional growth, personal enrichment and career development.

UA Healthcare’s 2011 benefits package is designed to promote wellness and encourage healthy lifestyle choices. UA Healthcare considers staff members to be its most valuable resource and it is dedicated to providing a culture that keeps patients healthy.

The system provides managers with the tools required to retain its first-rate staff. It offers learning opportunities that ensure high levels of patient and employee satisfaction, as well as a strong financial position. UA Healthcare gives total rewards that are competitive in the Arizona employment market. UA Healthcare ensures individual and group accountability for performance, rewards and growth through ongoing communication.
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John Marques is vice president for human resources at UA Healthcare, www.azumc.com.[/stextbox]

Arizona Business Magazine July/August 2011

AzHHA Conference - AZ Business Magazine July/August 2011

AzHHA Conference Addresses Challenges Facing Health Care Industry

The health care industry has undergone its fair share of challenges in the past, but 2011 has proven to be an exceptionally tough year. The difficult climate has set the stage for the Arizona Hospital and Healthcare Association’s (AzHHA) Annual Membership Conference, which will tackle the challenges head-on with the all-too appropriate theme, Between a Rock and a Hard Place.

“This year’s conference theme is applicable to many of the challenges facing the health care community today … including the implementation of health care reform, shrinking revenue streams, and the state and national budget woes,” says LeAnn Swanson, vice president of education services for AzHHA. The conference also will cover relevant topics such as advocacy, patient safety and quality, and governance.

The goal of the event, which will take place Oct. 20-21 at the Buttes Resort in Tempe, is to engage AzHHA’s members and keep them educated about pertinent issues affecting the industry. This year’s timely message is sure to make an impact on the audience of chief executive officers, hospital administrators, physician and nurse leaders, hospital trustees, operational leaders and all other members of the hospital family.

“Arizona hospitals and health systems find themselves in a time of both challenge and change,” Swanson says, “and the 2011 annual membership conference is designed to help your organization meet these challenges and changes head-on with instructive knowledge and a hopeful spirit.

“The conference is brimming with energizing and stimulating speakers providing the latest information and insights on the issues you care most about, to ensure your time away from the office is time well spent,” Swanson adds.

The event will begin with a keynote session titled, “From Success to Significance,” presented by Nido Qubein, president of High Point University and chairman of a national retail company. Qubein brings with him a rags-to-riches story of perseverance and business triumph, and will share a powerful message about the fundamentals that contribute to success.

“We are in difficult times and the future is challenging on many levels,” Qubein says. “Today’s health care professional is faced with a myriad of hard decisions that demand tenacity and experience.”

Following Qubein’s keynote will be the conference’s general session titled, “Healthcare Reform: Where are We Now, Where are we Going?” presented by Len Nichols, PhD., the director of the Center for Health Policy Research and Ethics and a professor of health policy at George Mason University.

Joe Tye, CEO and head coach of Values Coach, a consulting, training and leadership coaching company, will lead the informative session “The Florence Prescription (for hospitals and health care)” that will challenge audience members to reignite the spirit of the electrifying Florence Nightingale and her health care pioneers. Tye promises to bring his audience back to basics by reminding them of the importance of focusing on things such as employee engagement and patient satisfaction.

“They will learn specific strategies for building a culture of ownership, which is ultimately the only sustainable source of competitive advantage,” Tye says. He adds that attendees “will be challenged to think as deeply about the cultural blueprints of their hospitals as they do about blueprints for new buildings.”

John Foley, founder and president of CenterPoint Companies, which provides business performance training to Fortune 500 corporations, professional associations and educational organizations around the world, will close out the conference with a presentation on maximizing performance excellence.

There are also a few changes in store for the 2011 event. The conference no longer will feature an awards luncheon and instead will introduce the Honoring Our Professionals of Excellence (HOPE) Award. Deserving members of the health care community will receive recognition for their work, including a Caregiver Award, presented to an individual or care-giving team that has shown commitment to the delivery of quality care; and the Healthcare Leader Award, given to a deserving hospital executive or trustee who has demonstrated a history of noteworthy leadership at the state and/or national level.
The highly informative conference has been a benchmark event for AzHHA, helping to keep members educated and ready to face the challenges ahead.

“Times are difficult and budgets are tight, but your team still needs continuing education to stay current on the latest regulations and trends in the health care industry,” Swanson says.

Fortunately, AzHHA’s educational outreach efforts don’t end with the annual conference. The organization also hosts a multitude of webinars and other events throughout the year to keep their members informed and prepared in the dynamic health care industry.

“I have a depth of admiration for AzHHA and its members and I am most grateful for the continuing valuable work that they do to contribute to a better tomorrow for us all,” Qubein notes.

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AzHHA’s 2011 Annual Membership Conference

Oct. 20-21
The Buttes Resort
2000 Westcourt Way
Tempe, AZ 85282
azhha.org

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Arizona Business Magazine July/August 2011