CareerSTAT Academy Member Spotlight: Methodist Healthcare System of San Antonio

CareerSTAT Healthcare Workforce Development Academy

Beginning in November 2017, CareerSTAT brought together 11 healthcare organizations for the CareerSTAT Healthcare Workforce Development Academy. This year-long learning experience helps healthcare organizations develop more diverse talent pipelines, better retain and advance their entry-level staff, and proactively fill critical healthcare positions. An initiative of the National Fund for Workforce Solutions, CareerSTAT is a network of nearly 300 healthcare professionals who are committed to advancing healthcare’s frontline workers. The Academy supports CareerSTAT’s goal to accelerate the adoption of business practices that support frontline worker education, training, and advancement. Over the coming months, we are profiling each of the Academy participants and their progress. Read profiles of other CareerSTAT Academy Members here

Methodist Healthcare System of San Antonio

Providing Opportunities for Workers to Prosper

The Overview

For 50 years, Methodist Healthcare System of San Antonio has evolved to meet the needs of a growing community—and that includes their own workforce. Today, by offering better wages and career advancement opportunities, Methodist Healthcare System of San Antonio is helping staff grow personally and professionally while preparing them with the training and skills they need to address the health and wellness needs of community members.

The Work

Methodist Healthcare System is moving frontline staff beyond the minimum wage. They want to provide opportunities for their people to build skills and capabilities that will move them into higher-paying positions with career paths. These opportunities for better wages allow employees to thrive professionally and take care of their families.

To turn this goal into a reality, the healthcare system began mapping out what career development looks like for their frontline workers. They are building from within and creating pathways for clinical and nonclinical staff to advance to and hold leadership roles. With this new structure in place, everyone interested in advancing may pursue opportunities across disciplines – including an executive track. Additionally, with a focus on nursing recruitment, patient care assistants now have a path to transition into nursing careers.

Nurses are also getting additional support and opportunities to take on more responsibility. Nurses may now participate in an internal training program to become team leaders, and a mentorship program is underway. During their first year at Methodist, a new nurse is paired with a registered nurse to provide added support for those new to the field and to Methodist. As demand for nurses continues to rise, they want to retain and recruit them.

The work isn’t just developing a career ladder. The Methodist Leadership University and the Charge Nurse Leadership Academy were developed to build leadership skills among critical staff, wherever they are on the ladder.

Workforce development planning walks a thin line between supporting workers and ensuring an organization is profitable. Methodist Healthcare System has taken concrete steps to understand how these programs are performing across the health system, with some staff members attended ROI Certification® Program to better track and explain the business impact of workforce development programs.

The Results

While the programming is still new, results have begun to emerge. An average of 86% of those who participate in the leadership programs continue to work at the organization. Of those, about 15% have received promotions. The mentorship program has also been fruitful with retention among nursing mentees increasing.

 The Future

This is a plan designed to continue to support the workers and eventually sustain itself. Methodist Healthcare System of San Antonio has piloted this work across three hospitals and is looking to institute changes system-wide, for example, the mentorship program, which was so successful in improving retention that the organization is now establishing it in fields other than nursing. Knowing this work—and the results—don’t happen overnight, Methodist Healthcare System of San Antonio is committed to continuing to develop, refine, and expand the work across the system.