The 2023 Digital Health Leaders Crisis: What You Need to Know

Published March 13, 2023

Despite its revenue growth—16 percent in 2021 and a double-digit increase in R&D spending—the digital health industry is currently experiencing a talent crisis. Many organizations are struggling to find and hire qualified leaders with the necessary skills and experience.

From what we’ve seen, a variety of factors are contributing to this talent shortage, including the rapid pace of advancement in the field, a shortage of healthcare professionals with digital skills, and high demand for leaders across various industries.

So how do you overcome this crisis, find the right leaders, and grow your business? Here’s what you need to know.

Challenges and Opportunities for Leaders in the Digital Health Space

As within any rapidly growing industry, we’re seeing a variety of trends emerge as companies look to scale and grow in the digital health space, from remote work to data privacy. Here’s what we’ve noticed as we keep a thumb on the pulse of this evolving industry.

  • High demand for technical skills: As the industry continues to expand, there is a growing need for leaders with a range of technical expertise, including data analysis, software development, and project management paired with clinical knowledge. 
  • Remote work leadership: With the rise of telemedicine and remote patient monitoring, many digital health companies are offering remote work opportunities. This has actually helped to expand the talent pool but is requiring leaders to get clear on how they’ll manage these employees.
  • Interdisciplinary teams: Digital health companies are increasingly looking for individuals with diverse backgrounds and skill sets, including clinicians, data scientists, software engineers, and designers. These interdisciplinary teams are crucial for developing innovative solutions that meet the complex needs of the healthcare industry.
  • Emphasis on diversity and inclusivity: As we’ve seen across many industries, there is a greater focus on creating a diverse and inclusive workforce. Companies are recognizing the importance of having a leadership team and workforce that reflects the diverse populations they serve and are actively working to increase diversity in their hiring practices.
  • Focus on data privacy and security: With the increasing use of digital technologies in healthcare, there is a growing need for professionals with expertise in data privacy and security. Digital health companies are hiring individuals with expertise in data protection and are implementing robust security measures to protect sensitive patient data.

The Leadership Crisis and What You Can Do

Recruitment, retention, and engagement of qualified leaders have become key issues for companies in the digital health and MedTech space. Ultimately, companies need to address this challenge by building a culture that can deliver against their growth strategies while supporting new types of innovation across data, AI, and connected devices.

We have a few suggestions for how you can do this despite this crisis.

  • Develop comprehensive training programs in-house and focus on creating career pathways for developing in-house leaders. This can include promoting cross-disciplinary education, offering specialized training programs, and creating job opportunities that align with the evolving needs of the industry.
  • Offer incentives to attract and retain top leadership talent. Great options are competitive salaries, flexible work arrangements, and opportunities for career growth and development. 
  • Focus on diversity and inclusivity to ensure that a wider range of perspectives and experiences are represented in important conversations and leadership decisions, leading to more innovative and effective solutions.

As you look to build these initiatives and fill critical leadership roles, it is wise to seek the support and skills of a recruiting firm like Comhar. With a fresh outside perspective and a clear and proven process, you can grow your team with less drag on your internal resources, while also being more effective.

If you’d like more guidance or want to have an open conversation about your talent and hiring needs, please reach out to Comhar Partners. 

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