Early Talent Strategy for Healthcare

According to the BLS, demand for healthcare occupations is slated to increase by 2.6 million jobs between 2020 and 2030. America is an aging nation, and the healthcare sector is the fastest-growing, most in-demand employment sector out there.

But today, we are in the midst of a long-term labor shortage, which means that there are far too few people for all the work that needs to be done. Healthcare providers are and will be hard-pressed to fill all of their open positions, and the problem is only getting worse. By 2025, Mercer predicts massive shortages across many important healthcare roles.

To deal with this difficult issue, healthcare providers will increasingly need to turn their attention to developing a new generation of talent (instead of just trying to snag available talent or people who are currently employed at other companies). Every large, medium, and small healthcare business should be developing a “farm system” to ensure that a steady crop of talent is available to fill critical care positions in the coming years. In order to accomplish this, healthcare providers will need to reach high school and college-age students.

Industries that reach out early reap great rewards. Some 70% of the students we have surveyed say that they tend to pick who they want to work for while they’re still in high school. When we asked students if they believe it is important to connect with a future employer before they work there (and regardless of whether or not they have open positions), 99% said yes! And 72% said they would be more inclined to work for a company that connected with them before they applied. Watch the video >>> 

If a student chooses a field and starts to pursue the relevant educational and work path, it can be hard and costly to get them to change course later. Tallo has been working with companies in a variety of industries to create early talent strategies aimed at reaching high school and college-age students before they decide on a field. If healthcare providers adopt this strategy and aim to connect with a new generation of talent while they’re still in high school, it will ensure that more of those students get on the path to an impactful healthcare career.

How can healthcare providers help a new generation of talent learn about healthcare careers?

We’ve compiled a list of the key tactics healthcare companies can implement to build an early talent strategy and reach early talent before they choose other industries. These tactics combine past Tallo research with new insights captured by surveying over 530,000 Tallo users who are interested in healthcare.

#1 Get to know your audience

First things first: get to know early talent before you develop a strategy to recruit them. Any time you’re trying to reach a new audience, you will want to do some market research. To help you get started, we’ve compiled a list of key stats from over 530K Tallo users interested in pursuing healthcare and healthcare-related career and educational pathways:

6% of high school and college students surveyed chose nursing as their top healthcare career choice. Because healthcare is such a broad field, we made a list of the specific roles these students are most familiar with. The above data shows top titles (in order) that they are most interested in. If your role is not on this list, it’s likely time to get more information out there so they can start to learn about it.


When given a list of healthcare providers, 34% of the Tallo users (interested in healthcare) said that CVS is the healthcare company they are most familiar with and interested in.


Because many healthcare providers are regionally based, we decided to ask which places Tallo users interested in healthcare are currently located. What we found: Tallo users with an interest in healthcare are most concentrated in the Southeast, Midwest, and Southwest.


In addition to where they want to live, many young people frequently tell us about where they might want to live. Above are the top states that healthcare-interested students want to live in.


The Demographics of Tallo users who are interested in careers in healthcare

Any market research needs to really dig into the demographics of your audience. When it comes to healthcare, 78% of the Tallo users interested in the field are female. Nearly 40% are white, 16% are black, and 15% are Hispanic. What is also notable is that 55% of total interest comes from users who identify as a racial and ethnic minority.

#2 Workplace attraction and retention

Young people are often thought of as non-committal or prone to job-hopping. But what we found here is that 54% of the students interested in healthcare would like to stay in their first full-time job for at least three years. That’s impressive and important because it means that this new generation is interested in sticking it out more than you might think. This generation could be one that is easier to hold onto, especially if you can nail the work environment that will help them stay longer.

And what type of work environment might that be? Well, when we asked students, 74% said that work-life balance was the most important aspect they look for in an employer. After that, 67% said how well a job fits their skills, and 60% said company culture. Watch the video >>>

#3 Make sure your website and professional sites are speaking to them

Once students start to hear about you, they’ll do their homework. So your brand, appearance, and communication with them play no small part in convincing them to work for you.

First, 78% of the students we surveyed said that they would be more inclined to work for a future employer if they were familiar with their brand. You don’t need to come up with gimmicks or work hard to look relevant and “with it” to attract students. America’s high school and college students know that healthcare is important, and they’re more likely intimidated by it. A good way to start engaging them with your brand is to offer opportunities for them to learn about your company and the industry.

Second, when they do their research, 85% use Google to find you, 79% search your company website to learn more, and 58% explore professional social sites (places like Glassdoor and LinkedIn) to get a better sense of your reputation. Perhaps surprisingly to many in corporate America, only 9% look at a company’s TikTok account. Just 12% look at Facebook, and 22% look at Instagram. High school students know and appreciate that work and the social networks they use to connect to their friends and other influencers are not the same.

So, what do they look at when they research your company? About 88% look at your careers page to better understand your job opportunities, 80% try to learn more about salary and benefits, and 74% look up your reputation. These would be good places to start if you want to make sure that your websites, social channels, and other resources are optimized for attracting early talent. As students search your career pages, be sure to include information that helps them, especially anything that talks about the “ships” (see the next section). If you create resources and guides specifically for them about your industry, it will really help you win this new group. These can be things like videos, articles, and other educational materials that help a new generation of talent get a sense of the work and what it takes to get in the industry.

Perhaps the most important point here is that high school and college-age students will notice all this effort and really appreciate that you’re taking the time to invest in them. By expressing interest in them early and doing it often, it will help a new generation head in your direction. Watch the video >>>

#4 Focus on the “ships”

We’ve talked a lot about this one in the past and it is worth repeating here. Students respond to the “ships”: scholarships, mentorships, internships, and apprenticeships.

94% of students believe they need an internship or apprenticeship before they take their first job. And when we asked students what would help them change their mind about a future employer, 27% said hands-on experience through work study programs, apprenticeships, or internships.

93% of students are concerned about the cost of education and going into debt, so scholarships are a really nice way to build connections.

If you’re willing to offer work experience, mentoring, and educational funding, students will flock to you, and you’ll be able to engage them in a more meaningful way. Watch the video >>>

#5 Use virtual field trips and classic methods of communication

Students these days are pretty used to Zoom calls, webinars, and video conferencing, so it should be no surprise that 64% of them would be open to learning about future employers through such platforms. We found that they’re very open to engaging in virtual interviews with someone at your company who can talk them through a “day in the life” at your company or in a Q&A session with your employees about what they do. Another 49% said they would actually like to connect with a mentor at your firm.

When we asked students how they would want companies to reach out to them, 76% said email is their preferred option. After that, 67% said that they like the idea of using professional networking sites like Tallo or LinkedIn. While students spend a great deal of time on social media, they aren’t necessarily there to connect with schools or employers. In fact, students would still prefer to continue communication via email (84%) and phone (65%). Watch the video >>>

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Ready to get your brand in front of a new and diverse audience and start recruiting qualified talent for the great opportunities you have?

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Sign up for Healthcare Month!

Join nearly 2 million students, young professionals, colleges, companies, organizations and more during Healthcare Month, an annual month-long event of promotion, content, events, scholarships, and more all focused on connecting healthcare companies with a new generation of talent headed their way. Learn more by filling out the form below or click here to get involved.


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