Guided by Principles

Open culture encourages accountability and trust

Integrity, teamwork, quality, gratitude and professionalism. Health Providers Choice centers its mission around these core values, creating a family-like atmosphere that encourages staff to communicate with each other and helps them reach their highest potential — bringing the company’s bottom line along with them.

Founded in 2003 by President and CEO Rose Torrento, HPC specializes in nurse staffing but also places other healthcare professionals, such as medical assistants, technicians and nurse assistants. As a nurse herself, Torrento understands the clinical aspect of the business — and that helps the internal staff at the Rochester Hills, Mich.-based company add a personal edge to their interactions with the potential and existing talent on their rosters.

It was HPC’s vision and mission statement that attracted Natalie Look to the company when she was seeking to enter the staffing industry. “It was just so appealing to me,” says Look, who joined HPC as a college intern and worked her way up the corporate ladder. Since 2016, she has served as administrative manager as well as director of the quality administration team, overseeing the credentials of all HPC’s nurses and allied professionals. “The company’s purpose definitely drew me,” she explains. “Ultimately, we want to provide great quality patient care. And after doing my interview and speaking with Rose, her mission and vision including her whole story and background just resonated with me and it was a fit.”

One Big Team, One Big Family

The family-oriented environment is another reason employees think HPC is a great place to work. “You can tell they care about people,” Look explains. “They care about their nurses. They care about the patients that the nurses have to deal with. They care about everybody. Everybody is very involved, and I think that feeling comes from the top down. It just resonates with everybody here.”

HPC also promotes a culture where its team can be very open and very comfortable confronting each other. When a conflict arises, direct feedback is used to make sure things are not talked about behind anyone’s back. “We feel very comfortable facing each other, and that’s just because we promote that type of culture,” Look explains. “That’s one thing that is very different and it makes it very pleasant to work here.”

Jeff Kleckler, senior talent acquisition manager and business development at HPC, agrees that the company fosters an environment where everyone feels connected. “We really do live by a motto where you treat everyone here as family,” he says. “There’s a strong connection with every employee in the organization. And it doesn’t matter the level of the position, everyone works together.”

HPC invests money and time on different types of trainings and strategies to make sure its employees have all the tools they need. But Kleckler, who has worked at HPC for almost five years, particularly values leadership’s openness to feedback and willingness to hear what the employees have to say. “Opinions are very valued, regardless of title, position or longevity, things like that,” he says. “It’s a very open culture.”

‘Oz’ Training

That culture is partly the result of the Oz Principle Accountability Training that HPC provides to all its internal staff. Based on the business leadership book The Oz Principle, the program helps companies improve performance through accountability.

The training aims to create a specific type of culture within an organization, focused on individual accountability and developing key objectives. At HPC, all internal staff gets certified in the Oz Principle and educated on their responsibility and how important they are to the company’s ability to reach key results. Kleckler believes this is one of the things that makes HPC stand out as an employer.

“If you go to many other places, it’s kind of a free-for-all,” he explains. “You don’t know what you do. You don’t know what your role is and how important you are to a bigger picture. Employees are not always seen as equals and their voices are not always heard.”

Look agrees that the Oz Principle training is an investment in HPC’s culture. It helps all employees feel included and on the same page. She likens the training to Dorothy in the film The Wizard of Oz; Dorothy always had the power to make her dream of going home come true — even though she didn’t realize it — because she was wearing the ruby slippers the whole time.

“It’s empowering people to be accountable and recognize that they have the ability to make a change or to do things,” Look says. “It’s a really strong thing that we emphasize.”

Although culture and environment make HPC stand out as a great place to work, the company offers an array of typical, and atypical, benefits and employee engagement activities to show appreciation for its team. HPC provides pet insurance along with mainstay benefits such as medical, dental, vision, a 401(K) plan and life insurance. Its kitchen is stocked with food and drink, birthdays are celebrated with a nice lunch out, and the company hosts holiday parties and get-togethers. Staff has participated in team-building activities including visiting an escape room, outings to play bocce ball and wallyball, and a “painting-with-a-twist class” was held in the office.

Fit Begets Tenure

Kleckler is involved in hiring recruiters and also has pivotal responsibility for their training from start to finish using different systems. And when he first started, turnover was an issue; it was tough to have longevity with employees. But now, tenure is one of the things the team is particularly proud of.

“We have recruiters who have been here three-plus years — and in this industry, that is good,” Kleckler says. “You don’t see three years from recruiters very often and I think all of this stuff plays a role.”

Kleckler focuses on personality when evaluating candidates. Experience has taught him that generally the people that pan out are those who are not shy, who are not quiet. They quickly elaborate and give specific examples when a question is asked during an interview. They quickly come up with a response that relates. “I’ve interviewed a lot of people, and it’s sometimes like pulling teeth,” he laments.

On the experience side, Kleckler doesn’t necessarily look for a background in recruitment.

“I might look for customer service or just jobs tailored around that, because I think recruiting is pretty easy to learn, but often some of those skills — people have them, or they don’t.”

But in the end, it is HPC’s core principals — integrity, teamwork, quality, gratitude and professionalism — that attract talent, retain talent and keep the company on the “Best Staffing Firms to Work For” list.