January 26, 2023

5 Clinical Research Resourcing Trends to Watch in 2023

As we head into 2023, the clinical research resourcing experts at Vitalief expect continued disruptions in traditional workforce strategies. Several industry trends will significantly impact research and clinical trial organizations’ recruiting, hiring, and retention practices.

Today, we’re diving into the top five trends and how they may impact your workforce efforts.

Trend #1: The Healthcare Human Capital Epidemic

In 2023, the industry will continue to face resourcing and performance challenges. Leaders and hiring managers must think differently about how they attract, engage, and retain team members.

The impact of the healthcare human capital epidemic on research and clinical trial teams is complicated. Even potential strategies to address it can be complicated. Stay tuned for an upcoming deep dive into this issue in future articles.

Trend #2: Remote Work Will Continue to be Popular

Many companies have already seen the benefits of remote work in terms of cost savings and productivity. Job candidates also express interest in these opportunities. So, the remote work trend will continue in the research and clinical trial space this year.

The COVID-19 pandemic accelerated the trend toward remote work. As many organizations work through digital transformations, remote work becomes a more viable option.

However, remote work also brings challenges, such as maintaining team cohesion and ensuring equitable access to resources.

Challenges in Maintaining Team Cohesion

Maintaining team cohesion can be challenging when employees are not physically together.

Companies may need to invest in additional technologies and practices to facilitate remote collaboration, such as:

  • Video conferencing
  • Project management tools
  • Virtual team-building activities
  • And more

Need for Digital Skills

There is also an increasing demand for employees with strong digital skills, such as the ability to:

  • Use collaboration and productivity tools
  • Navigate virtual communication platforms
  • Work effectively in a remote environment

Equity and Accessibility Concerns

Remote work can be challenging for some employees, particularly those who need access to reliable internet connectivity or a suitable home workspace.

Companies may need to consider these equity and accessibility issues when implementing remote work policies and procedures.

Potential Impact on Employment

As more companies adopt remote work, there may be a shift in the available jobs and locations in which they are based. This could lead to changes in the job market and the availability of employment opportunities.

Trend #3: Shifting Talent Acquisition and Retention Strategies

Retention strategies vary significantly from one organization to another. However, companies must adapt to the rise of remote work and the increasing importance of digital skills.

Companies may need to enhance their talent acquisition and retention strategies by:

  • Offering competitive salaries and benefits
  • Offering more flexible work arrangements
  • Providing opportunities for professional development
  • Creating a positive work culture and environment
  • Investing in technologies that facilitate remote collaboration

These aspects of the employee experience help research and clinical trial workers find purpose in their work. They are essential investments in a stronger, more skilled, and professionally satisfied workforce. If done correctly, they can reduce attrition and reduce recruiting costs. 

Trend #4: Artificial Intelligence and Automation

AI and automation will play an increasingly important role in the workplace in 2023. Companies that embrace these technologies can increase efficiency and productivity in conducting research and clinical trials.

Still, they will also need to consider the potential impact on employment and the need for reskilling and upskilling their workforce.

Benefits of AI in The Workplace

On the positive side, AI can automate specific tasks and processes. This frees employees to focus on more complex and rewarding work. It can increase job satisfaction and motivation, potentially leading to higher retention rates.

AI can also improve the accuracy and efficiency of specific HR processes, such as performance evaluations and goal setting. This can create a more positive and supportive work environment.

Potential Downsides of AI

The impact of AI on employee retention will depend on how it is implemented and used within an organization.

Suppose AI is used to replace human workers or automate jobs without considering employees’ needs and concerns. In that case, it could lead to reduced job satisfaction and potentially higher turnover.

It is essential for organizations to consider the potential impacts of AI on their workforce and to implement it ethically and in a way that supports employee well-being.

Trend #5: Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion (DEI)

Companies increasingly recognize the importance of diversity, equity, and inclusion in the workplace. In 2023, we will see more companies implementing DEI initiatives such as:

  • Unconscious bias training
  • Diversity hiring goals
  • Inclusive policies and practices

Diversity, equity, and inclusion (DEI) can significantly impact staffing efforts in several ways. Adopting a DEI approach to staffing can help organizations attract and retain a more diverse workforce.

A more diverse workforce brings many benefits, including:

  • Improved decision-making
  • Increased creativity and innovation
  • Better representation of customers and stakeholders

Implementing DEI practices in staffing can also help create a more inclusive and supportive work environment, leading to increased job satisfaction and employee retention. This can be particularly important for underrepresented groups who may face unique challenges in the workplace.

Diversity is particularly critical in clinical research, where representation impacts the conduct of clinical trials.  

2023 In a Nutshell

As 2023 ramps up, we expect competitive organizations to employ numerous creative techniques to attract and retain research and clinical trial professionals. New strategies, methodologies, and operating models will likely emerge to address the new workforce requirements. Their success will only be limited by their breadth of perspective, the measure of creativity employed, and their commitment to continuous innovation. If you’re looking for staffing or opportunities in the clinical research industry, contact Vitalief today.