If you want to become a healthcare administrator in Massachusetts, you’ve chosen the right state. Massachusetts and the Boston metropolitan area are among the nation’s leaders for the number of healthcare administrator jobs and level of pay. In 2018, healthcare surpassed both retail and manufacturing to become the industry that employs the most people in the United States.

And it’s just starting. The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) projects a significant increase in the number of healthcare workers by 2026, with 2.4 million more people entering the industry.  That’s good news for those seeking an online Master of Healthcare Administration from Boston College. That’s especially true for those looking to become a healthcare administrator in Massachusetts.

Becoming a Healthcare Administrator in Massachusetts

The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) projects a 20% increase in the “medical and health services managers” field between 2016 and 2026. As of May 2018, those in the profession were earning an annual mean salary nationwide of $113,730.

That improves significantly in Massachusetts. The state ranks among the top five states in the country in the number of jobs for healthcare administrators and offers the third highest mean annual salary in the country, with healthcare administrators making $133,900 as of May 2018. The Boston-Cambridge-Nashua metropolitan area has the third highest number of healthcare administrators among all metropolitan areas in the country. They made a mean annual salary of $140,700 in May 2018. That put them second, behind only the New York City metropolitan area.

Skills Needed to Succeed

The demand is there. The pay is substantial. So, what skills do people need to succeed as healthcare administrators in Massachusetts?

Management Skills

This is the foundation of the job of a healthcare administrator in Massachusetts. Healthcare professionals who want to lead a facility or a large department in healthcare need the soft skills associated with great management and leadership. LinkedIn recently listed the skills that are among the most in-demand for 2019. They include:

  • Creativity
  • Persuasion
  • Collaboration
  • Adaptability
  • Time management

Modern managers must also understand that the business model has moved away from a “command and control” model, according to LinkedIn. Successful managers now need the ability to coach and empower their employees.

Problem Solving

Analytical thinking and problem-solving are also key to success as a healthcare administrator. The field is fast-paced and the challenges are numerous. They include regulatory pressures, complicated financial structures and the need to make operations efficient while also achieving better patient health outcomes.

Legal Knowledge

In the healthcare industry policies change often. And when changes don’t happen, the possibility still always looms on the horizon. Given this situation, healthcare administrators must understand regulations and how they impact operations. They also must keep up with any changes, staying ahead of the curve on potential new regulations.

Technology Skills

Innovative technology continues to make an impact on healthcare, much as it has with most industries. Healthcare administrators need to have a thorough understanding of the technology used with electronic healthcare records, as well as the latest inventions in areas such as wearable medical devices.

These skills, which can be learned in a graduate degree program from Boston College, can help healthcare professionals become successful healthcare administrators in Massachusetts. The demand is certainly there. It’s up to ambitious professionals to develop the expertise needed to step into these critical management roles.