Illustration of four people talking and standing around board with notes and ideas on it
Strategies & solutions to help retain a skilled workforce
by Sarah Hanna

The health care industry has been grappling with significant staffing challenges affecting its ability to gain and retain a skilled workforce. These challenges are not limited to any single aspect of the services homecare and home medical equipment (HME) companies provide, but rather represent a broader industry issue.

In an era of increasing demand for home-based solutions and technological advancements, recruiting and retaining qualified team members has become a daunting task. This article delves into the multifaceted challenges faced by the industry and explores strategies to address the issues.

1. Recruiting Talent

Recruiting skilled employees is an overwhelming task. Homecare and HME companies require a diverse workforce within the revenue cycle and clinical areas. Finding those with the right characteristics, qualifications, experience and great attitude for delivering quality care can be time-consuming and costly.

2. High Turnover Rates

High turnover rates are a common challenge. Factors such as demanding workloads, lack of training and development, understanding the compliance and regulations set by the government and third-party payers, the physical and mental demands of the job, a lack of support from superiors and co-workers and lower rates of pay for certain job categories can lead to burnout and discontent among employees—which in turns leads to staff leaving for positions they believe better meet their personal and professional needs.

3. Quiet Quitting vs. Loud Quitting

“Quiet quitting” refers to a situation where employees disengage from their work and organization without explicitly resigning. This phenomenon often goes unnoticed by employers until it’s too late, resulting in decreased morale and productivity. Quiet quitters usually do the bare minimum required to keep their job, stop volunteering for tasks, refuse overtime, are absentee or tardy and refrain from speaking up in meetings.

“Loud quitting” refers to employees who are open about their disenchantment and disengagement. They explicitly express their unhappiness and desire for change and their intention to leave. The best way to reduce loud quitting is to gain information from those departing during exit interviews. These interviews can reveal valuable insights into issues that may have led to resignation and discontent that employers can take and improve upon in the future. However, there is more opportunity to affect the quiet quitters.

4. Combating Quiet Quitting

When people reach burnout and pull away from their responsibilities there are ways to reinvigorate team members and retain the talent that has been cultivated over their term with the organization. Here are a few to consider:

Create an environment where employees feel comfortable sharing concerns, suggestions and ideas. Encourage open dialogue and address issues promptly to show their voices are heard. Give clear and concise information about new initiatives and the direction of the company overall.

Offer opportunities for skill and career development. Encourage team members to set and pursue professional goals within the organization, showing a clear path for growth.

Provide continuous feedback and recognize employees’ contributions. Constructive feedback helps them understand their strengths and areas for improvement, while recognition motivates and reinforces their positive contributions.

Regularly conduct employee engagement surveys to gauge satisfaction and identify areas for improvement throughout the organization and leadership. Use the feedback to tailor retention strategies to specific needs. 

5. Outsourcing Options

Outsourcing areas such as revenue cycle management (RCM) responsibilities can be another strategy for dealing with staffing challenges. When organizations affiliate with the right partner, tasks such as intake, eligibility verification, documentation/authorization procurement, billing, accounts receivable collections and payment application can be handled by dedicated experts who are well-versed in the complexities of the revenue cycle. Some of the benefits of using an outsource solution include:

Outsourcing allows providers to maximize their revenue potential by ensuring accurate and timely billing, reducing claim denials and optimizing reimbursement rates. This not only boosts financial performance but also gives greater predictability and stability in revenue streams.

Navigating the ever-changing landscape of regulations and payer requirements can be a daunting task. RCM services are equipped to stay abreast of the latest compliance standards, ensuring that providers remain in compliance with industry regulations.

Outsourcing partners leverage cutting-edge technology and software solutions for RCM. By tapping into these resources, companies can benefit from efficient workflows, real-time reporting and advanced analytics. This approach enables better decision-making and performance monitoring. 

In conclusion, the health care industry faces a multitude of staffing challenges, including recruiting and retaining talent. These challenges can strain resources and impact the morale and culture of an organization. By understanding the dynamics of the quiet quitting phenomenon and taking appropriate measures to retain talent, companies can build a stronger and more resilient workforce.

As the industry continues to evolve, changes in leadership techniques and/or using outsourcing partners to combat the staffing crisis need to be explored. Outsourcing can be the catalyst where providers can access expertise, achieve scalability, reduce costs, enhance compliance and ultimately focus on what matters most—delivering high-quality of care, financial growth and differentiation from the competition.

Sarah Hanna is the vice president of consulting services at ACU-Serve Corp. She can be reached at or at (800) 887-8965 ext. 102.