The biggest fear for most professionals is their skills, employer, or industry will either slowly or suddenly become irrelevant. A lifetime of hard work and professional accomplishment can suddenly be rendered useless, dimming the prospects for finding new opportunities.
If you work in the field of medical records and health information technicians, this is not an issue you need to be very concerned about. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the field is projected to grow by 15 percent between 2014 and 2024. That rate of growth is much faster than the national average for all professionals. There are currently an estimated 188,600 professionals working in this capacity, but 29,000 new jobs will be created in the near future. The median salary was $37,110 per year or $17.84 per hour in 2014.
So what accounts for this impressive rate of growth? There are a number of factors, not the least of which is the growth of healthcare as a whole. More relevant, however, is the growing integration of healthcare and technology, and the now widespread acknowledgment that electronic medical records and digital information in all forms are capable of lowering costs, improving outcomes, and supporting providers and patients alike.
In order to stay ahead of the rate of change, hospitals, clinics, and provider organizations of all types are adding more medical records professionals and seeking out professionals with new types of skills. The transition to ICD-10 last fall proved to be a wake-up call for many of these organizations, revealing how consequential it can be to have inadequate numbers of unqualified staff. Hiring has already accelerated, but will speed up even more in the coming years.
If you currently work in the field or are pursuing the necessary credentials, it’s important to realize that a healthy rate of job growth is not enough to ensure long-term career success. The number of opportunities may be increasing, but the expectations placed on professionals in these roles are increasing as well. The technicians of the future will need to have a greater fluency with technology, work more productively and efficiently, and keep pace with the broader evolution of healthcare.
The most obvious way to seize the moment is to seek out additional education, certification, and training. But in addition to bolstering their credentials, these professionals will need to enhance their job-search strategies. A better search leads to more opportunities in exciting organizations for higher rates of pay. Don’t let the potential of this unprecedented moment pass you by. Team up with the healthcare career experts at MedPartners.