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MSP/VMS Dramatically Simplify the Chaos of Dealing With Dozens of Locums Vendors

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By Bob Livonius, President, Strategic Workforce Solutions, AMN Healthcare

(Note: Reprinted from Staffing Industry Review, published Feb. 27, 2014) 

What do Computerland, Blockbuster, Montgomery Ward and many tenured healthcare staffing companies have in common? They lost touch with the needs of their clients. Their products and services remained in demand, but delivery of those products and services underwent disruptive change, and these companies didn’t embrace the transformation.

These companies probably voiced similar assertions to those repeatedly voiced about managed services programs (MSP) and vendor management systems (VMS) in locum tenens: “We will never take part in an MSP”; or “VMS will never work in healthcare. Doomed to fail, period.”

As it turns out, MSP/VMS are working very well in healthcare, just as they have in other industries for decades. Approximately 30 percent of healthcare providers currently utilize MSP and VMS, with another 20 percent planning to implement these services in the next couple of years.

This growth is not hard to understand--if you look through the clients’ eyes. MSP/VMS dramatically simplify the chaos of dealing with dozens of locums vendors, while enforcing uniform quality standards. As the number of locum agencies has exploded, healthcare managers and clinicians are now inundated by a sales and marketing tsunami, which frustrates everybody and creates disarray as more firms battle over dwindling supply to fill growing demand. MSP/VMS end the chaos through “one and done”: One partner managing all staffing vendors.

Finally, and contrary to the assertions of some staffing agencies, vendors that affiliate with an MSP can realize greater revenues by eliminating sales commissions, speeding up collections, protecting existing business and obtaining incremental business.

Efficiency always wins in the end. The history of commerce is built upon disruptive innovations that change the game for clients--and littered with enterprises that ignored change and became irrelevant.

© 2014. AMN Healthcare, Inc. All Rights Reserved.

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