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High Demand, Low Supply: Physician Recruiting Strategies

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The current physician shortage is expected to worsen, especially for private practices. So when you decide to hire your next physician, you’ll have to be creative and competitive.

Understand Your Market

Since the shortage won’t play out the same way everywhere, you need to understand your local market. The Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA) publishes supply-and-demand data for various practice areas and geographic regions. This knowledge can be especially critical in determining appropriate physician compensation.

Before talking with candidates, be sure you:

  • Define the job carefully. What are its duties, hours and compensation? Is there a partnership stake?
  • Define your practice. What makes your practice stand out? And what’s the office culture — fun and casual, button-down businesslike or somewhere in between?
  • Make a thoughtful survey. What do your city and region offer in terms of schools, housing, culture and lifestyle?

In your review of candidates, be sure you:

  • Move quickly. You’re in a seller’s market with other practices and hospitals vying for the same physicians you are. So when you see a CV or resume that looks promising, set up a phone interview within a few days. If you decide to proceed, schedule the in-person interview quickly, too.
  • Help your candidates. Set a detailed schedule and send it to the candidate early. Assigning escorts for different parts of the visit is a great way to establish all-important personal connections.
  • Discuss compensation. Don’t postpone this conversation — provide a salary range and benefits before the candidate leaves. And inform candidates of your time frame for making a decision.

Next Steps

Scheduling a second interview implies high interest. Include a personalized tour of your area and be ready to discuss its advantages; if you invite the candidate’s partner or spouse, provide attention and assistance to both. If you know something about his or her cultural interests, a night out for a show or symphony can strengthen personal connections.

If you decide to make an offer, move quickly. You don’t want to lose a valuable asset because you were too busy to make and act on a hiring decision.


Healthcare Practice Strategies

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