Physician Recruitment: Tips and Strategies

Five Fundamental Tips to Maximize Your Recruiting Process

Want to learn how to make the most of your job postings, how to streamline your search, how to source more (and more appropriate) physicians—and how to stay smiling while doing it all? Here, two recruiting experts share five tried-and-true tips for busy physician recruiters.

  • Keep a positive attitude.

    Jenna Blusiewicz on keeping a positive recruiter attitude"Always try to keep a positive attitude about the candidate search," says Jenna Blusiewicz, Senior Physician Recruiter for Paladina Health, who is based in Phoenix, AZ. Staying positive is a challenge sometimes, she admits, but it's essential when reaching out to candidates. "If you're not excited about the opportunity for the position you're trying to fill, you can't expect a physician to get excited about it either," she says.
  • Write a detailed and organized job posting.

    Mindy Roeder on writing a detailed job posting The only thing worse than a confusing, disorganized job posting is one that also lacks good information. "I write extremely detailed job descriptions," says Mindy Roeder, Director of Physician Recruitment at Schneck Medical Center, in Seymour, IN. "I want to be open, honest, and paint a really clear picture. When people read the job posting, I want them to be able to see themselves in that job."

    In other words, be detailed, factual, and specific. Likewise, don't hide behind vague language or give candidates the wrong impression—either intentionally or unintentionally. In a recent job posting for an OB/GYN position, for example, Ms. Roeder provided bullet-pointed lists describing each facet of the job. Under the "Clinic" heading, she listed exactly what the physician should expect to encounter on a daily basis in the position: number of patients per day, clinic hours per week, OB clinic days vs GYN clinic days, nursing support, and more. Other facets of the job with their own bullet-pointed lists were surgical duties (including available surgical technology), labor and delivery duties (including on-call expectations), information about the hospital environment (including salary, bonus, and time off details), and—last but not least—a description of the town and community.

    Collecting, organizing, and writing all these details may seem time consuming, but it can actually save time in the long run by attracting just the candidates you're looking for, Ms. Roeder explains.

  • Lead with your strength.

    Begin your job posting and your initial communication with candidates by naming the single most attractive feature of the position. This could be the salary, the type of practice setting, the level of responsibility of the position, the technology, or simply the location.

    "My biggest selling point is our practice model," Ms. Blusiewicz explains. In this model, physicians work in primary care clinics located on or near large company facilities. Physicians in these settings have smaller patient populations and typically longer patient appointment times than average primary care doctors, Ms. Blusiewicz says. Once she describes these advantages up front, she doesn't have to "sell" candidates on the position—the description of the practice model attracts attention all by itself, she says.

    To bolster this important feature of the position, Ms. Blusiewicz has recently added videos to her job postings. These are simple, unscripted video testimonials of Paladina physicians talking about their own positive job experiences. "These speak volumes to candidates," she says.

  • Cast a wide net.

    "I never want to limit who I might consider for a job posting. I want to include anyone I can," Ms. Blusiewicz says. For example, if the position is located in Tacoma, WA, she won't only consider physicians in Tacoma—or even only those in the state of Washington. "One of the specific things I do on PracticeMatch's Pinpoint database is to click the option that says: 'Candidates open to any location.' That way, I'll find out about any physician in the country who might be a good fit for the position."
  • Add a personal touch.

    Job posting sites, email, and even social media outlets (such as LinkedIn and Facebook for researching the background of candidates) are the modern recruiter's tools of the trade—but don't rely on these exclusively. "Sometimes you have to pick up the phone and make human contact," Ms. Blusiewicz says. "Although nobody does that anymore." With the prevalence of internet tools and the ease electronic communications, personal phone calls have nearly become obsolete, she explains. But on the other hand, a candidate might now regard a recruiter's cold call as something distinctive and intriguing.

    Your personal touch might take a different form depending on the candidate and the position. "We put an extreme amount of effort into the site visit," Ms. Roeder says. This is an almost immersive visit that takes place over two to three days and brings together the candidate's family with the medical staff and their families. The highlight of the visit doesn't even take place at the hospital—it's a family get-together that is usually held at the home of one of the physicians. It's this kind of small-town warmth and camaraderie that often convinces the candidate to come on board, Ms. Roeder says.

    These five tips will help with your physician recruiting efforts no matter what your strategy is, but the most important factor here is you. Put your best foot forward and plan for success.

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