New employees need aid to succeed

Loretta Buisson, director of patient access satellite facilities at Ochsner Health System in New Orleans, LA, looks for applicants who have great customer service skills, are highly motivated and dependable, and adapt well to change.

Buisson isn't the only one in the department who assesses the applicant's skills, however; patient access employees also give their input. "Not only does our manager interview the applicant, but we have department peer interview teams specific to the area in which the applicant will be working, such as the emergency department or patient registration," she says.

After an applicant is hired, Buisson takes these steps to help him or her succeed:

• The new hire is assigned a department mentor.

"The mentor is responsible for navigating the applicant through his or her work space and the functions of our department," says Buisson.

• At 30 days, the manager will meet with the new hire to discuss his or her progress.

• At 90 days, the manager conducts a progress evaluation, and again reviews expectations toward annual performance evaluation.

• Department-specific "information boards" are used to alert employees to successes and opportunities.

"We post our patient satisfaction scores, our monthly metrics report scores, and birthdays or employee announcements," says Buisson.