Recruiting Graduating Physicians: How To Get Ahead of the Competition
Now that summer is fully underway, next year’s graduating physicians are beginning their job searches. With these graduating physicians in such high demand among healthcare organizations, the competition between recruiters to bring them on board has skyrocketed. Due to this, these candidates become inundated with recruitment emails, phone calls, and print advertisements very early on, leaving recruiters scrambling to find ways to get their message in front of these candidates and convince them to join their organizations.
So how can recruiters cut through the noise and get ahead of the competition in their quest to recruit graduating physician candidates? Below are seven things recruiters can do to increase their chances of landing a recent graduate.
1. Reach them early
Over two-thirds of graduating physician candidates begin their job search a full year before completing their programs, which means that many are looking for positions right now. The rest often begin their searches around the holidays when they have time off from their programs, meaning they will be looking at positions when many recruiters are on vacation. Because of these two groups of graduating candidates, it is crucial for physician recruiters to begin reaching out to them as early as possible for positions that will need to be filled the following year. By locking them in early, recruiters can get ahead of the competition and gain a head start on their recruitment efforts for the following year.
2. Go digital
Most physicians exiting training this year are part of a generation that has grown up with the internet in the palm of their hands. These physicians often access websites, engage in social media, and search for jobs right from their phones. Because of this, it is important for recruiters to utilize mobile-friendly recruitment websites, application processes, and have robust social media presences in order to improve the candidate experience and meet them where they congregate.
3. Leverage your employer brand
Young physicians aren’t just looking for a high salary in a swanky town. While compensation and lifestyle are very important factors for these physicians, they also want to join an organization where they feel that they will fit well and aligns with their professional goals. Using your employer brand when recruiting prospective candidates can help you stand out from the competition and give graduating physicians an idea of what it would be like to work for your organization – and whether or not they would fit in well.
4. Texting is key
Many millenials communicate primarily through texting, with some not even checking their voicemails (especially when they have recruiters leaving them dozens every day). Because of this, it has become increasingly important for physician recruiters to utilize texting as part of their candidate communication strategy. Whether it’s gauging potential interest or scheduling interviews and visits, texting is often the most effective way to reach these candidates.
5. Prepare for sticker shock
Physician salaries have increased every year since the implementation of the Affordable Care Act due to increased competition for a limited pool of candidates. Graduating physicians have spent much of their careers in these environments and expect high salaries when coming out of training. Added to the fact that many physicians have heavy student loan burdens, you will find that many graduating physicians will expect salaries higher than what you are currently paying your more experienced physicians.
6. Close the deal quickly
Time kills all deals, and this couldn’t be more true when recruiting graduating physician candidates. These candidates are in high demand, often juggling multiple interviews and offers at once. Extending the recruitment process too long or failing to provide an offer in a timely manner can have candidates taking an offer elsewhere in order to lock down a position post-graduation.
7. Start retention efforts early
Physician recruitment isn’t just about hiring qualified physicians – it’s also about bringing on ones that will stay with the organization long-term. With the cost and time to fill for recruiting a new physician rising every year, it has become more important than ever that recruiters start their retention efforts the moment a candidate signs. By having a longer onboarding process, regular check-ins with the physicians after they start, and a robust mentoring program, organizations can reduce physician turnover and hold on to their new hires even longer.
Key Take Aways:
- Start early and move quickly – candidates start looking before many organizations will consider their candidacy and make their final decisions early. Begin courting these physicians a full year in advance of their graduation and sign them once you’re sure they would be a good fit.
- Make their candidate experience amazing through mobile optimized sites and applications, robust social media profiles, and communicating through text messages.
- Start retention efforts as soon as they sign, helping them feel engaged and checking in regularly once they start. Now that you have them in the door, make sure to keep them there!