The Negative Impact of a Vacant Senior Living Executive Position

Due to the booming economy, job candidates are turning down more job offers now than they did one year ago. What once seemed like an enticing offer then, may now seem average. This trend is expected to continue into the foreseeable future. Combining this dilemma with the fact that 10,000 Baby Boomers are retiring each day, means we could see a number of open positions that could remain vacant for an extended period of time.

Industries that deal with people’s health are in a more precarious position. Vacancies of senior health care executives and providers within the senior living industry could adversely affect the quality of care that a facility provides. However, that’s not the only negative impact of a vacant position. One or more of the following may also happen:

Team Impact:

  • Vacancies may cause overworked employees to tire, which may adversely affect not only the quality of patient care but also the patient experience
  • Increased stress on overworked current employees may cause increased absenteeism and tardiness
  • Vacancies may cause staff to seek employment elsewhere, at facilities that have been able to retain full support team

Leadership Impact:

  • Facilities and teams with vacancies require more management attention
  • Leadership often has to skip their normal management planning and responsibilities to pitch in and fill the void
  • Vacancies may make leadership reluctant to terminate poor performing employees

Image & Reputation Impact:

  • Excessive vacancies make your facility perceived as weak and going down hill
  • A poor reputation will encourage residents to look elsewhere for their housing
  • Vacancies may impact new recruiting efforts since most industry workers want to be employed by an “Employer of Choice” having a high star rating

Here are a few suggestions for filling your vacancies in a job market where candidates are in the driver’s seat:

  • Speed-Up Your Hiring Process:
    Unfortunacalltoy, the average time it takes to fill an open role continues to climb. That means it’s imperative to streamline your hiring process and delete any unnecessary steps and countless people involved in the interviewing process.  Currently, top industry talent receives multiple offers and only last in the job market for about 10 days before being snatched up.  If your gut calltols you that a candidate is a good fit, pull the trigger and make an attractive offer the same day.
  • Brand Your Organization as an “Employer of Choice:”
    An Employer of Choice means that your Senior Living organization is a great place to work. Position your work environment as extraordinary and people will desire to work for you. They are also most likely to stay with you even when they are courted by other employers.
  • Raise Your Wages:
    Operators can no longer ignore the fact the it’s time to raise wages. Wages have remained low and stagnant for a number of years but now a bidding war for talent has emerged. If a new provider enters the market at higher pay rates, they will undoubtedly take talent away.
  • Hire a Search Firm:
    Search and recruiting firms specializing in the Senior Living Industry can help you fill key positions in a timely manner, weed out candidates to prevent costly hiring mistakes, connect you with hard-to-find talent, negotiate hiring terms and competitive remuneration, and keep all information in the strictest of confidence.

The candidate-driven market is expected to continue into the foreseeable future and there’s a negative impact of leaving a role vacant especially for a long period of time. Don’t develop a “we’ll make do” attitude as it is detrimental to your team, leadership, and reputation.  Instead, when you’re looking to acquire a new hire, it’s essential that your organization has a well-developed plan and strategy for recruitment and retention.



Julie RupenskiJulie Rupenski is the Founder, President and CEO of MedBest, opening the doors in 2001. Since that time, Julie has gained national recognition for providing top talent solutions exclusively for the Senior Living Industry. Julie is a Succession Planning specialist and also a seasoned recruiter at filling C-Suite, Vice President, Regional, and Property level positions.

Julie has an in-depth knowledge of the Senior Living Industry since she worked in operations for many years in both Senior Housing and Senior Living. Today, Julie makes it her personal and professional mission to place qualified people in health care positions where they have the greatest impact.

Julie earned her degree in Gerontology at the University of South Florida, Tampa, Florida and continues to cultivate her career through additional education and training.

Contact Julie Rupenski at 727 526-1294 /



MedBest is a nationwide senior living executive recruiting firm that was established in 2001.
We specialize in recruiting quality executive talent for all types of senior living facilities across the US including Assisted Living, Continuing Care Retirement Communities, Memory Care, Independent Living, and Skilled Nursing Homes.

For more information, visit and or contact us as at 727-526-1294 /

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