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    Colleen Luckett
    Colleen Luckett, MA

    The general buzz in the medical industry is that staffing is still a huge challenge. For example, a recent Sept. 26, 2023, MGMA Stat poll found that staffing — previously cited as the top challenge for medical groups leaders in 2021 and 2022 — continues to be the biggest priority for practice leaders as they head into the fall and winter months.  

    Factors such as the increasing appeal of remote work, looming workers’ strikes, lingering effects of the global pandemic, and competition from rival medical practices have made it crucial for organizations to reinvent their onboarding and training mechanisms. A poor onboarding process has a direct correlation with decreased employee retention and job satisfaction.  

    RWJBarnabas Health Medical Group found a solution for that: training academies. Speakers Jill Berger-Fiffy, MHA, FACMPE, Jennifer Smith, APRN, BC, and Mary Cataudella, FACHE, PHR, shared actionable insights from their program at the 2023 Leaders Conference in their session, "Retain Your Team Through Onboarding and Training Academies.”  

    Through focus groups with managers, clinical staff, and patient service representatives (PSRs), RWJBarnabas was able to identify key areas for training to build their program. 

    The group describes their training academies initiative as a “hands-on” training program that enhances learning and bolsters both patient and employee confidence. Their aim was to ensure safe and consistent practices across the board, thus increasing overall employee engagement, and encourage employees to enhance their skill sets and rise within the organization's ranks. 

    In their session, the speakers will share the following: 

    • Step-by-step guidance on setting up a "training academy" tailored to your organization's unique needs 
    • An onboarding checklist to understand and improve current workflows, ensuring comprehensive training of essential tasks for both clinical and front desk staff 
    • A deep dive into the nuances of recruitment, training, engagement and the compensation structures of training staff to maximize efficiency and morale. 

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    Colleen Luckett

    Written By

    Colleen Luckett, MA

    Colleen Luckett has an extensive background in publishing, content development, and marketing communications in various industries, including healthcare, education, law, telecommunications, and energy. Midcareer, she took a break to teach English as a Second Language for four years in Japan, after which she earned her master's degree with honors in multilingual education in 2020. She now writes and edits all kinds of content at MGMA. Have an idea for an MGMA Connections article or whitepaper? E-mail her

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