The nature of staffing for an always-on-call emergency assistance provider in the American Red Cross makes finding the right talent at the right time inherently difficult. Costs were increasing and the need to staff a wide range of roles, from nurses and call center reps to eventually, a full-service IT department meant that its existing process would no longer cut it. With a less-than-stellar MSP partner managing its workforce, the Red Cross knew it was time for a change.
After years in an ineffective program that a previous MSP regime had installed, the Red Cross required a full staffing reboot. In a matter of months, Yoh transitioned the entire workforce and supplier system and installed a real-deal, Yoh-managed MSP program. In short order, Yoh went from a shallow supplier pool of just a handful to more than 25 external staffing suppliers accounting for 50 percent of the supplier spend. This increased competition exponentially and allowed for significant costs savings. Plus, Yoh’s hands-on approach and out-of-the-box thinking helped bring stability to a set of roles that had previously seen significant turnover with past suppliers.
With the installation of the Yoh-managed MSP, our team was able to dramatically reduce costs from the get-go, knocking down average bill rate by nearly $500,000 versus the prior program in a matter of one quarter. By increasing competition, Yoh reduced markups by up to 50 percent. We brought structure, scalability, and visibility into a once-murky workforce program.
The Red Cross responds to an average of more than 62,000 disasters every year 1
3.9 million nurses in the U.S. in 2019 2
$73,550 annual salary for U.S. nurse in 2018 3
$40,350 median salary for health IT professional 4
$35,211 average base salary for customer service rep 5
For more than 100 years, the American Red Cross has been providing emergency services, disaster relief, lifesaving blood and more to communities across the country. Making all that important work possible are the people who serve those communities – the countless nurses, volunteers, call center representatives, executives, engineers, IT professionals and more.
But what happens when finding those people becomes an issue? Identifying, filling, tracking and deploying thousands of different people in multiple types of roles all across the country is understandably difficult. It’s only become increasingly challenging as the talent marketplace has stiffened.
Years ago, the Red Cross recognized that it was an expert in responding to and preparing for weather emergencies, not staffing ones. They identified a partner who could help and stuck with them. But after a while, they began to see that this staffing partner wasn’t providing the level of workforce management and visibility they needed. Their staffing supply chain wasn’t diverse, and as a result, the Red Cross was paying exorbitant markups on some of their talent and seeing significant turnover elsewhere.
So, they made the call to Yoh.
Typical for organizations the size of the Red Cross, installing this MSP program needed to be done in a short timeframe – in this case, a 12-week implementation process. However, the Yoh process began long before that. Well ahead of the project go-live date, the Yoh team was already evaluating the Red Cross’s existing supplier system and designing a custom plan with areas that needed refinement, streamlining and organization.
Once the MSP program was in place, Yoh turned what was primarily internally supplied workforce into one that now boasts 25 external suppliers filling 50 percent of the supplier spend – far exceeding the 15 percent contractual requirement. In part, these suppliers are filling the typical corporate roles – IT professionals, engineers, developers, analysts, collectors, corporate executives, administrative assistants, human resources, and light industrial positions. But the Red Cross isn’t a typical organization. It requires not just a geographically diverse supplier base but an MSP provider who has relationships with suppliers that can provide emergency response roles all over the country in a matter of days. Roles include blood donor care providers, registered nurses, aids, and patient care assistants.
Even call center roles aren’t the usual customer service-style positions for the Red Cross. When Yoh was told the Red Cross was seeing significant turnover in its call center positions, Yoh wanted to see for themselves - the team flew to the call center, listened to a handful of calls, and made a quick discovery. These call center reps were in charge of asking previous blood donors to give again – essentially, they were performing the role of a sales rep in a call center position. Now, Yoh is hiring individuals with a sales-focus and seeing substantially less turnover than before.
Without an MSP program or one that brings a diverse staffing supply chain to the table, organizations run the risk of overspending on their workforce without the visibility to even know it’s happening. That’s exactly what happened to the Red Cross before Yoh came along.
With a vendor-neutral MSP program, Yoh evaluated each existing supplier relationship and worked to either reduce their costs or find a better supplier who would. Just three months into the relationship, this new supplier competition allowed Yoh to shrink the average bill rate by $3.88 per hour for a total savings of nearly $500,000 versus the prior program. For transitioned workers, that number jumps to $5.25 per worker, totaling more than $284,000 in savings. In many instances, Yoh reduced supplier markups by up to 50 percent. Because few other MSP vendors can claim this deep of a roster of suppliers all over the country, Yoh was uniquely equipped to bring these savings to the table without sacrificing any quality or speed of hiring.
Today, Yoh manages suppliers, onboarding, reporting and tracking, and off-boarding of nearly all of the Red Cross’s contract workers. The Yoh team brings full visibility into the organization’s workforce spend and can give instant clarity into where inefficiencies may lie and where new savings can be found.
The people of the Red Cross still deliver vital services to Americans in need all year round. Yoh helps them do that quicker, easier, and more efficiently than they ever have before.