The healthcare industry is notoriously slow to adopt new technological advancements. This fact is evidenced by the glacial pace of implementation of electronic health records, which the federal government finally had to bring about employing both carrot and stick.
It might stand to reason, therefore, that healthcare staffing companies would lag behind their counterparts that serve more tech-savvy industries in terms of the effectiveness of their online presence. However, just the opposite is true, according to the results of Staffing Industry Analysts’ 2013 Staffing Company Survey, which sampled 496 firms to collect their opinions on the subject.
In the survey, respondents indicated, on a scale of 1 to 10, the degree to which they believe their current website contributes to business success. They were also asked whether their websites were “mostly candidate focused” [24 percent], “mostly client focused” [12 percent], or “evenly mixed (between client and candidate focus)” [64 percent]. The findings indicate a significant degree of correlation between the two factors, with candidate-focused websites tending to drive business success to a greater degree than those that are client focused.
“This was particularly apparent at the segment level,” explained Theo Vadpey, research associate and author of the report “Which Website Design Attribute Drive Staffing Firm Business Success?” “Compared with other temporary staffing segments, healthcare staffing firms stand out as having more candidate-focused websites, and the highest level of average satisfaction. On the other hand, IT staffing firms stand out as having more client-focused websites, and the lowest level of average satisfaction.”
According to Jason Lander, CEO of Staffing Robot, the decision to focus a staffing firm’s website either on clients or candidates is dependent on the segment and factors that are driving their business: “For example, healthcare staffing is very ‘supply’ (candidate) driven. Therefore, having a candidate focused site makes sense. However, other niches of staffing are very ‘demand’ (client) driven so a more client focused site makes sense.”
The other main determinant of satisfaction was the number of features built in to a firm’s website. The survey listed nine common features and asked respondents to indicate which, if any, their website possessed. The most common features were job boards (83 percent) and social feed buttons (73 percent). The number of features that a firm’s website possessed was strongly correlated with average satisfaction up to about five features; beyond that, additional features produced no additional satisfaction. This suggests that active management of websites produces value, but that such value has diminishing returns.
“Unfortunately, many staffing companies still have static brochure websites and are still going with the 'if you build it they will come' strategy,” said Lander. “Meaning, they have basic, brochure type websites focused on client keywords and content, but with few features. They're making the assumption that clients will just search and somehow find them, but that stopped working in the ’90s. Today, if you want to reach clients on the web you have to have a quality, content marketing strategy. Yet, most companies that come to us aren't even blogging.”
Corporate members can access the full report here.