Hiring and retaining top talent is a struggle most clinical research sites encounter. Turnover can cost as much as $25,000, and a bad hire can lose a site up to 40 percent of productivity. The everyday struggles to recruit trial subjects, conduct quality trials and maintain a balanced streamlined process can put undue stress on a site’s team and culture, causing burnout, low morale and, eventually, turnover. Low morale can be contagious, leading to the destruction of a team and an overall decrease in production and revenue.
On-boarding new staff and training existing staff on protocols can be time consuming, and many sites simply do not have the dedicated resources to maintain an internal trainer. Thus, sites are relying on their top employees and revenue producers to mentor and train. So, the question is, how do we avoid and lessen the effects of turnover?
Assess your hiring practices
Looking into your current hiring process can be the first step in hiring the right talent. Most sites have a traditional hiring process of recruiting talent from their websites and career search engines, followed by a review of the candidate’s previous employers, roles and responsibilities and education. But, does this really give you an idea of how well the candidate works and fits your team? Does 20 years of experience really mean they are the best candidate over someone with three years of experience? What if you have a team of experienced staff that could train a newer CRC that has the drive and desire to dig in and learn?
Thinking outside of the box and using behavioral interviewing techniques can help identify talent that fits your team and your current needs. Focusing on a few key competencies could help you identify the right fit; previous behaviors are an excellent indicator of future behavior and, thus, help to assess if the candidate may be able to work within the need you are looking for.
Engage current employees
In order to retain top talent, a site must continuously engage their employees to ensure they are challenging them, providing opportunities for professional growth, and motivating them to work at the top of their scope. Mentoring and team building opportunities can be effective ways to keep talent engaged. Imagine your team coming to work every day happy and empowered—this can happen if you build the right team first. There will always be ups and downs in the workplace; the key is to minimize the downs in order to keep employees engaged and support the success of each other and the site.
Watch this free, on-demand webinar to learn even more best practices for finding and retaining capable clinical research staff members. During her presentation, our expert webinar presenter explored the theory and practice of competency-based approaches for hiring, retaining and helping staff advance through more systematic, structured and objective-based approaches.