Recruitment Challenges – Where to Find the Right Health Tech Professional?


Recruitment Challenges – Where to Find the Right Health Tech Professional?

Health technology is a rapidly growing industry and while growth is undisputedly a positive thing, companies in the business struggle to find professionals to meet their specific needs. In order to sustain the industry’s growth and help promising startups develop into successful growing companies, the industry as a whole needs to find new ways to ensure the availability of skilled labor.     

In a survey conducted in 2015 by Saranen Consulting and The Finnish Health Technology Association (FiHTA) companies in the health technology industry stated that the recruitment needs for 2016 would reach up to a thousand new positions. Though vacancies vary from technical experts to sales and marketing professionals, what most positions have in common is that they often require a wide set of skills. Desired competencies include for example extensive technical expertise, understanding the possibilities and challenges of digitalization, knowledge of industry regulations, fluency in applicable clinical terms and industry language as well as convincing pitching skills. A glance at this list makes it easy to see why applicable candidates are often hard to find.

A finite pool of professionals often results in companies competing for the same set of people. At the current pace of industry growth the situation is only going to get more intense as the demand for qualified new employees increases.

 Traditional recruitment requires substantial effort

The recruitment process is always an investment, as time and money must be sacrificed for a successful end result, both during and after the hire. In the survey mentioned above, companies stated that the biggest challenges in recruiting are first and foremost finding suitable candidates and the financial effort the process requires. The financial investment includes not only the wage costs of a new employee or the cost of a well thought out and executed recruitment campaign, but also the time current personnel must spend on wading through the applications and interviews – not to mention the time and resource consuming orientation process. Despite the effort and resources invested in recruitment processes, many companies still struggle to find candidates that both meet all the desired criteria and are a good fit for the company culture.

For a small company or a start-up the risk related to a new hire is even higher than for an established corporation in terms of both the financial and business aspect. In addition, it is often difficult for them to compete for top candidates with more established and well-known companies in the industry.

Helping companies develop the experts they need

 So how can health tech companies find expert candidates suitable for their needs? The growing industry isn’t lacking interest amongst potential applicants for many reasons, including the meaningfulness of the work and the growing and international nature of the industry, but its elevated level of standards sets the bar for employment quite high.

A fresh graduate, even with an impressive diploma, often lacks the invaluable asset of practical experience. Other more experienced professional with high technical competence might in turn lack the necessary industry understanding (for example regulative or clinical knowledge). The need for ways to facilitate new top experts to the industry, thus enabling continuous growth for both companies and the whole health tech field, is indeed prevalent. That’s why companies should be given not only opportunities but also incentives to actively develop and educate future high-skilled employees in the workplace for their own (and the industry’s) needs.

One channel where both opportunity and incentive is provided to companies is recruitment training programs, which present an easy, economical and less risky alternative to the traditional hiring process.

Saranen Consulting collaborates with FiHTA and leading industry professionals and companies to provide a safe and cost-effective way for health tech companies to produce the top experts of tomorrow themselves. A state-sponsored six month training period gives ample time for orientation and evaluation while significantly reducing financial pressure on the company. For professionals with a suitable background and proper motivation recruitment training programs offer a unique and valuable opportunity to advance in their career and find employment in a truly compelling industry.

 Measurable benefits for participating companies

HealthTechPro is a recruitment training program designed specifically for the needs of health technology companies. One of the companies that has taken part and benefited from the program is RemoteA, a globalizing start-up specialized in remote medical analysis.

– We first participated in the HealthTechPro program in 2014, resulting in a successful hire. The person we ended up hiring was someone we were familiar with, but who had no previous experience in our particular field of business. The training included in the program allowed him to quickly become acquainted with the industry and therefore helped us gain a valuable asset to our workforce, says CEO Timo Hakkarainen.

As the first experience was a positive one, RemoteA joined HealthTechPro for a second round in January 2016.

The recruitment training program offers significant advantages compared to the traditional recruitment process including for example the reduced financial risk and the easiness of the process with a prescreened candidate pool. However, to us the biggest advantage is the opportunity for both employee and employer to get to know each other for 6 months in a training and working environment and ensure for both parties that we are making the right recruitment decision. To a small company, the costs of a wrong hire can be detrimental, Hakkarainen concludes.

Saranen Consulting is participating in Upgraded Life Festival, the biggest health startup event in Nordics, uniting some 1000+ attendees. The festival brings the Nordic health and wellness innovators together for insights, learning, sharing and networking experiences. Meet Saranen Consulting at the event on May 31st in Biomedicum, Helsinki

Looking to recruit health/IT/business professional or looking for a new opportunities in health? Make the first step now – fill the application and get a chance to connect with a potential employer/employee already before the event.

About the author: Jannica is a Team Leader for Recruitment Programs at Saranen Consulting. She was the Program Director for both the pilot HealthTechPro recruitment program in 2014 and the second consecutive program in 2015-2016. Saranen Consulting is looking to continue and expand its cooperation with growing companies in the health tech industry and together find new innovative ways to ensure continued growth.

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