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Transforming Your Staffing Business Into A Self-Service Marketplace

Traditional staffing processes have become increasingly insufficient, leading to inefficiencies and missed opportunities to accelerate (and even sustain) growth. Many staffing firms have even reported a loss of business to competitors that have adopted mobile self-service marketplace technology – up to 40% in some instances. Staffing platforms have emerged as the ultimate solution, transforming how staffing businesses operate and interact with clients and candidates.

In a recent webinar, Nicolina Durfee, the founder and CEO of Zeal Clinical Staffing (a per diem healthcare staffing agency and ActivateStaff customer), shared insights into adopting a mobile staffing platform. She details how it successfully enhanced their efficiency, engagement and overall growth of their business, highlighting:

  • A 35% increase in onboarding workers each week
  • 60% of clients now use the client portal, with 67% reporting an increase in shifts filled
  • 100% of clients say it’s improved communication

A case study in improving efficiency

When Zeal first started out, their staffing operations were mostly manual and semi-manual processes that led to significant challenges, particularly in tracking and managing credentials and schedules. Although they had some technology in place, such as a scheduling platform, none of the systems spoke to each other. This approach resulted in slow onboarding, communication hurdles and difficulties in shift management. 

“Segmenting the process definitely slowed down onboarding and [we] sometimes lost candidates,” Nicolina said. “And at times it was also difficult for our clients because they couldn’t just quickly see what they had available to them or coming to them.”

This had not only slowed down Zeal’s operations but also affected their ability to quickly meet their clients’ demands. This emphasized the need to find a more integratable solution that would streamline their business and empower their candidates and clients to have more visibility and control over their schedules. 

Zeal’s change management journey

Transitioning to the ActivateStaff platform involved proactive planning, team engagement and phased implementation. From the very beginning, they knew they wanted to involve their entire team in the process to ensure that the new system would address everyone’s needs and concerns. 


Some of the approaches they took were:


1. Collaborative Decision-Making

Ensured all team members had a say in the transition process, fostering a sense of ownership and acceptance of the new platform.


2. Feedback Collection and Open Communication

Actively gathered input from staff to identify current issues and barriers, maintaining transparent communication throughout the process to keep everyone informed and engaged.


3. Strategic Planning

Developed an implementation plan, outlining each step of the transition to prepare all members of the team.


4. Data Migration and Cleanup

Used the transition as an opportunity to clean and reorganize existing data to facilitate a smoother shift to the new system.


5. Phased Rollout

Implemented the new platform in waves, starting with a small group of more tech-savvy nurses to test and provide feedback before rolling out to the entire staff.


6. Training and Support

Created training materials and conducted sessions to educate staff on the new platform, ensuring they felt confident and competent.

The impact of change

Within a year of implementing a self-service model, Zeal has experienced enhanced scheduling efficiency, better job fill rates and expanded access to qualified net new candidates. On top of that, the deployment of their branded app streamlined communication and improved the referral process, contributing to a substantial increase in onboarding new hires.

Nicolina shared, “We’re ultimately just bringing more people on because we’ve really streamlined the process… we have seen that we have 35% more people onboard each week.”

Perhaps most notably, the client portal fostered a new level of transparency and collaboration between Zeal and its clients, enhancing satisfaction on both ends. “We have 60% of our clients using the client portal… 67% said they feel like they’re getting more shifts filled because they can access our schedule themselves. And 100% of them said that it improved communication with Zeal.”

Nicolina notes that Zeal’s move to a mobile platform strategy has also led to organic growth, where net new candidates are finding them directly through the App Store. Nurses looking for flexible shifts now easily find and engage with their staffers without any help, simplifying the recruitment process.

Zeal’ advice to staffing agencies

Adapting to digital platforms is no longer optional but a necessity for growth, efficiency and for staying competitive. Agencies must be proactive in identifying areas of improvement and in integrating technology where needed to address those challenges.

Many agencies continue to harbour reservations about adopting new technologies due to concerns there will be a lack of acceptance from candidates and clients. But as Nicolina advised, “You have to get on board with technology…. I got more clients on board than I thought I would right out of the gate… some of our clients are coming from that very techie generation, and they’ve been wanting this.”

If you’re looking to learn more about how mobile staffing platforms can accelerate and sustain the growth of your staffing business, be sure to check out the on webinar on-demand, “How to Transform Your Staffing Business Into A Self-Service Marketplace” or book a demo with an expert on our team.

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