Healthcare Remains Healthy
While the general economy is in a recession, health care professionals are fortunate to be in an industry that is still experiencing job growth.
Advance for Healthcare Professionals
Byline article by Rich Milgram
As the American economy continues to crumble, many professionals are not only worried about the health of the economy, but the security of their own job. Although some industries, such as health care, will likely fair better than others, the reality is that the current economic crisis has the ability to affect every household and industry across the country.
Fortunately, health care has felt little to no impact as a result of the economic recession to date. For example, the health care industry currently holds the No. 1 position for online jobs posted across the Beyond.com Network of career communities and also experienced the largest percentage increase in jobs over the past 12 months with 2.66 percent.
Health care workers can expect their industry to continue to evolve as a result of the economy and new advances in medical technology. It is likely that there will be an increase in demand for physician assistants and nursing aids to help reduce hiring costs, and to keep hospitals and medical organizations running efficiently, especially in light of the current nursing and physician shortage. Also, new technology breakthroughs will help streamline medical care, thereby reducing costs and giving medical professionals the ability to take on an increased number of patients.
So, what do all of these changes mean for health care workers? Here are a few steps that medical students and professionals can take to find their ideal job or advance their career in the health care industry:
- Establish a personal brand. Take the initiative to start building your personal brand, one of the first steps toward effectively marketing yourself to employers. Differentiate yourself among other candidates by effectively communicating your strengths and skill sets to employers. It's also important to know when to ask for help. Consider a career consultant who focuses on the health care industry or engage a professional service to help develop a more effective resume.
- Diversify your job search. Job postings on generic job sites can sometimes span a wide range of geographic locations and industries, which may be a drawback for candidates who are not willing to consider relocation or multiple fields. Broaden your job search to include niche job sites tailored to the health care industry. Job sites tailored to the health care industry provide targeted results to meet individual interests and career aspirations and provide a lot of helpful resources and information.
- Set realistic expectations. Some hospitals and health care organizations may find it difficult to offer high salaries in a recession, especially for new graduates. It will likely take employers a longer time to receive payment for services due to tight finances and an increased number of uninsured patients. As a result, job seekers should set realistic salary expectations and remember to take the entire employment package (including benefits and bonus plans) into consideration when evaluating a job offer.
- Keep up with industry trends. Research and understand the trends affecting the industry. Stay informed by reading medical trade journals, joining local associations and networking with other experts in the medical field. Also, in an industry that is constantly changing, it is important to anticipate technology trends and continue to learn new skills.
While the general economy is in a recession, health care professionals are fortunate to be in an industry that is still experiencing job growth. As health care continues to evolve, workers will need to stay marketable to employers through continuous learning opportunities and certification programs. Professionals who choose to never stop learning stand out from other candidates and have the best chance of leading a successful career.
Mr. Milgram is the founder and CEO of Beyond.com, Inc.