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Physician Recruitment Best Practices: How to Attain Talented Providers

According to the American Medical Association, over 83 million Americans live in an area without enough access to primary care physicians. The American Association of Medical Colleges also projects a potential shortage of up to 86,000 physicians by 2036. Due to the shortage of physicians and the need for qualified physicians in many locations across the country, healthcare providers must have an effective physician recruitment strategy to attract qualified candidates to their practice.

5 Physician Recruiting Tips

As you aim to improve your recruitment efforts, it’s essential you follow a few physician recruitment best practices to attract top talent. While you reach out to new physicians and develop a recruitment plan, follow these five physician recruiting tips:

1. It Can Be Okay to Be Patient: Hiring the Right Fit

With a physician shortage, it can be tempting to hire candidates who don’t tick all of your boxes. However, this approach can actually do more harm than it’s worth. Since it can cost somewhere between $500,000 to $1 million to replace a physician, it’s important to avoid hiring physicians out of desperation, as this often results in poor fits and the need to replace them shortly after hiring. Before you begin hiring candidates, work with your team to identify the ideal candidate, and be patient if you don’t immediately find a physician meeting your expectations. While you look for the right full-time fit, you might rely on locum tenens or moonlighting physicians to cover your needs. Hiring qualified, temporary staff can still provide top-quality care without over-scheduling your existing full-time physicians.

2. Offer Competitive Compensation Packages

While of course physicians are motivated by the desire to help people, many have large amounts of student debt and need to be paid in line with their talents. Before you offer a compensation package to potential physicians, you should first research the pay other physicians are receiving near your location. If a competitor can offer higher pay or more extensive benefits, you’ll likely lose out on top talent. As you prepare a competitive compensation package, it should align with the type of packages offered by your competitors. With a national shortage of physicians, it often can be a good idea to offer more than your local competitors if your organization can afford it. Besides base compensation, physicians often look for other benefits, such as insurance, flex time, generous PTO, and other non-monetary opportunities that assist with work-life balance.

3. Showcase Your Engagement With the Local Community

Physicians often want to work somewhere that engages with their community and promotes healthy living outside of the healthcare provider setting. If you have programs for community engagement, make sure to highlight them to applicants. Programs or initiatives that aim to address vulnerable patient populations in your area can also be a great selling point for physicians. Overall, an inclusive, mission-oriented approach to healthcare will appeal to physicians who are dedicated to making a difference in the area they live. Community engagement can also be helpful for meeting potential hires. For example, you might meet physicians who work in your area during community events, helping you create a relationship with them before they’re on the job hunt. If they decide they want to explore their options in the area, your healthcare organization may be the first one they think of.

4. Work With a Medical Staffing Partner

While you can recruit physicians on your own, you can speed up the recruitment process and land more qualified candidates with a facility staffing partner. A medical staffing partner with a comprehensive approach can assist with finding locum tenens, moonlighting, and full-time talent. As you search for a provider, check that they have a large network of physicians, regularly partner with other healthcare organizations, and take the time to get to know your facility’s specific needs. By partnering with a facility staffing organization, you can cut down on the time it takes to find talent, particularly talent that fits your organization’s goals. An excellent staffing partner will ensure any talent they send to you will meet your organization’s mission, staffing needs, and any other requirements you have for new staff. They can also prevent burnout for your current physicians, as they can help you find temporary staff while you search for the best candidates.

5. Highlight Opportunities for Greater Work-Life Balance

With 85% of physicians in 2022 stating they believed work-life balance was the most important factor when selecting a new job, opportunities for work-life balance should be a priority in your pitch to candidates. If your facility offers generous PTO, scheduling flexibility, or sabbaticals, make sure to discuss these benefits with your candidates. By showing you take work-life balance seriously at your company and have the benefits to back it up, physicians will be more likely to pick you over a competitor. When you also have programs for mental health or after-work social events, you may want to highlight them as well to reinforce your organization’s commitment to prioritizing work-life balance. Alongside providing the above benefits, you might consider offering telehealth opportunities for new physicians. With COVID-19 making telehealth far more common, giving physicians the chance to work from home for part of the week can be a major draw.

OnCall Solutions: Physician Recruitment Services

As a leading facility staffing partner, OnCall Solutions utilizes our network of physicians to help healthcare organizations find talented locum tenens, moonlighting, or full-time physicians. Since we pair a national network with a local focus, we can often find physicians in your area, and if there isn’t a large enough local talent pool, we have the capabilities to identify qualified physicians who are interested in moving to your area. Alongside our recruitment services, we offer credentialing services and operational and billing expertise to reduce your team’s workload. Learn more about our physician staffing services today. If you have any questions or want to partner with us for your physician recruitment needs, please contact us.

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