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How can HR contribute to positive patient experiences

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It’s no surprise; engaged employees produce higher satisfaction for patients. So what contributes to positive care experiences from a staffing perspective?

As hospitals and health services operate full steam ahead, both employees and HR are being asked to do more work with fewer resources. So taking time to review and digest feedback can be difficult. Patients are uniquely positioned to provide opinions and comments on their care which is often captured through mediums such as patient satisfaction surveys. Although, when emotions are high, capturing this information can be difficult.

In a review conducted by the Sax Institute on behalf of the Australian Commission, evidence was taken from a decade of patient feedback, grey literature and 39 publications from both public and private hospitals across Australia. From the evidence gathered, several themes occurred that contributed to patient experiences.

Within the report, it was found that factors that contributed to positive care experiences in regards to Human Capital were:

  • Sufficient staff numbers;
  • Appropriate skill mix of staff; and
  • Well-trained staff.

Examples of factors resulting in negative care experiences:

  • Qualified staff not available;
  • Staff are not trained in the use of necessary equipment;
  • Inappropriate staff skill mix; and
  • Lack of staff.

The findings show a strong correlation between engaged employees and patient satisfaction.  So finding, quickly onboarding, and inspiring the best talent to stay and grow with your organisation is of utmost importance.

Consider the employee experience in your workforce and how HR could help improve it


This is often the first introduction a candidate will have to your organisation. Confusing and complicated processes destroy enthusiasm, with enthusiasm being the very thing you want your new talent to maintain. Top candidates, especially millennials, expect a simple application process; one they can do remotely using their mobile phone.


First impressions count! This is where employees start to see what’s really going on in your organisation.  Without a clear onboarding process, the excitement of joining a new company can quickly fade and leave candidates second-guessing themselves if they’ve made the right decision.

Employee Exit Survey


Once you’ve got them on board, how do you keep them happy? Research shows, healthcare workers stay longer when they can see their next role ahead, the Deloitte study surveying the talent paradox from the employee perspective found that promotion job advancement is the most important reason for healthcare employees to stay in their current workplace.


Performance management should be forever evolving. Fostering an ongoing dialogue between healthcare workers and their managers can help both long time and new employees unlock their potential.

HR is the driving force behind human capital management; by addressing these issues we start to see a change in overall patient satisfaction. In a health care organisation, HR can contribute to positive patient experiences by adopting automated, easy-to-do processes, particularly in your hiring, onboarding and performance management.

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