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4 Ways to Tweak Your Current Perioperative Recruitment Strategy

Tweaking Your Current Perioperative Recruitment Strategy

In today’s excessively competitive, and constantly changing market, recruiting and retaining top perioperative talent is a challenge for healthcare facilities nationwide. While healthcare is projected to be the fastest-growing industry between 2014 and 20241, there is a growing shortage of perioperative nurses—20% of those currently employed in this specialty are expected to retire in the next five years.2,3,4

This news is enough to make the most prepared OR hiring manager cringe. So what can you do to address this challenge as well as keep your patients safe and your costs down? We’ve come up with a few ways to better your chances of hiring the best nurses and keeping them happy for years to come.

1. It’s about them, not you – make your nurses’ professional development a top priority. From your new nurses to your seasoned nurses, helping them solve their education challenges at each stage of their career will keep them from seeking out greener perioperative pastures. Focus on filling in your team’s various knowledge gaps with Periop 101: A Core Curriculum and Periop Mastery to let your team know their professional development is important.

2. To certify or not to certify – encouraging your team to obtain their CNOR certification not only demonstrates that you value their perioperative career growth but it also conveys to potential employees that you value patient safety. The American Board of Nursing Specialties believes all registered nurses should seek certification in their specialty area of practice. Check out AORN’s Prep for CNOR Live or the online option to help increase their chances of passing the CNOR exam.

3. Make digital technology your friend – in order to recruit the millennial workforce you’ll need to be seen as tech-savvy. Most millennials conduct a majority of their job searches using a mobile device. Confirm that your facility’s website is optimized for mobile and consider using video technology to shorten your hiring cycle and reduce costs by asking candidates to send a short video answering specific screening questions.

4. No hiring manager is an island – rely on the perioperative recruiting experts to help you attract the top talent. In addition to making your website as effective and appealing as possible (it is the store front of your facility to potential employees), take advantage of AORN’s Career Center and easily tap into a pool of thousands of highly qualified candidates. Take advantage of the center’s various marketing opportunities to demonstrate why you’re an employer of choice such as display ads, social media, email, and our job board.

So take a step back. Try adjusting your current strategy and incorporating new ways to recruit and retain the nurses that will keep your patients safer and your facility more efficient. To learn more about how to create your company profile on AORN’s Career Center, visit us at


1. U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, 2015. Occupational Outlook Handbook: Healthcare Occupations. (accessed October 10, 2016).

2. Ball, K.; Doyle, D.; & Oocumma, N.I., 2015. Nursing Shortages in the OR: Solutions for New Models of Education. AORN Journal, 101:1:115-135.

3. Root, S., 2015. Strategies for Building the Perioperative Workplace of the Future: Industry Perspective. Healthstream, Nashville.

4. AORN, 2015. Perioperative Nursing Succession Planning: Theoretical Learning, Clinical Opportunities, and Residencies. AORN, Denver.