As partners to health systems around the nation, Optimum is seeing a significant shift to health delivery models that focus more on value-based care. However, meeting the demands of that goal, especially for historically marginalized communities, remains a challenge. Our clients are asking how technology and people work together.
As a solutions-focused partner, Optimum believes healthcare IT is at the heart of improving equity access and outcomes across patient populations. IT is more than just a software solution. The people behind the systems and developing those solutions must reflect the diversity landscape in our nation.
Lori Smith, Senior Vice President of Talent at hc1 agrees. She writes: “Making a concerted effort to improve representation for those pursuing careers in healthcare tech not only creates a more inclusive healthcare system, but in turn provides organizations with the opportunity to make an equitable impact on understanding health conditions and provide better patient care as a whole because of their diverse perspectives.”
M any healthcare organizations’ recruiting models fall short of the DEI needs to make a true impact on better patient outcomes. To deliver on our partners’ urgent needs, we developed Optimum CareerPath, a targeted recruiting, training, and placement program. CareerPath approaches recruiting with an emphasis on potential rather than experience so that we bring in new voices into the healthcare profession, resulting in typical class demographics meeting 68% minority and 39% women candidate composition.
But why are CareerPath candidates so successful? Our program goes beyond recruiting to truly prepare candidates for success at health organizations, so their voices can have the long-lasting impact needed in our health systems. Elements of our program include:
Our first CareerPath cohort gained the attention of more than 9,500 applicants. We accepted 95 candidates into our first classroom. By partnering with local universities, we recruited candidates with the right drive and a growth mentality for fulfilling careers in healthcare IT. Our CareerPath class included a significant population of voices traditionally excluded from healthcare IT, and this remains a key priority in our recruiting methodology.
Once accepted into CareerPath, candidates take a CHIME digital health professional certification program that includes a 6-week intensive boot camp of general healthcare fundamentals, IT and project management fundamentals, change management and readiness, clinical informatics, and professional soft skills development. Following the boot camp, we prepare candidates with the needed technical skills and/or certifications to hit the ground running on a project. CareerPath graduates are ready to support clients with this targeted, last-mile training, providing confidence for both candidate and client.
Once placed at a client, CareerPath graduates receive continual mentorship and development from seasoned Optimum consultants. This promotes inclusion and development of our candidates for long-term careers in the healthcare IT industry.
Optimum’s core mission is to help our clients achieve better patient outcomes by acting as trusted advisors. Optimum CareerPath builds a talent pipeline for organizations and mutually supports rising talent in diverse subsets of skilled people. CareerPath graduates have real impact on the organizations they serve, and together we celebrate the importance of HIMSS Global Equity Week.