Gone are the days when a hospital or healthcare facility would employ a large human resources department to fulfill their new employee needs. Instead, healthcare staffing agencies have allowed medical facilities to more easily achieve their fiscal and speed-to-hire goals without compromising patient care. As a result, the way that physicians find out about, apply to and are hired to new positions has changed. The physician recruiter now plays an integral role in the hiring process, matching doctors and facilities with the right opportunities.
Whether you’re a seasoned pro or brand new to working with a physician recruiter, the following seven suggestions will help ensure a successful process, one that ends with you in a new position.
1. Keep an Open Mind
The biggest benefit of working with a physician recruiter is having access to job opportunities that you may not have been aware of or previously considered. Therefore, the clinicians that have the most success when working with a physician recruiter are those that keep an open mind, especially about the job opportunities that are presented to them. While your recruiter should be aware of your salary expectations, location preferences, desired schedule, etc., there will be times when the best option is not one that meets all your parameters.
For instance, a job opportunity in your ideal location that meets your salary requirements but not your shift requirements should seriously be considered. After all, schedules are prone to change, and since you’ll already be working there, you’ll be the perfect candidate to fill that shift opening when it becomes available. Additionally, compromises made for the sake of invaluable learning opportunities and experiences always pays dividends down the road.
2. Know Your Recruiter
All doctors graduate medical school with a similar body of knowledge. However, with time and experience (i.e. internships, residencies, fellowships), doctors become highly knowledgeable and skilled within a specific area. This same principle holds true for a physician recruiter. While your recruiter will have a fundamental grasp on how to place physicians from all specialties, you will achieve the best results with a recruiter that is specialized in your area of expertise.
Your recruiter will undoubtedly spend time asking you questions about your background, experience and expectations. Take the time do the same. Ask your recruiter how many physicians they have placed with a background that is similar to yours. Find out what hospitals or facilities they have worked with in the past. The best partnerships are those where there is transparency and mutual understanding.
3. Be Serious
When working with a physician recruiter, it is important to be serious about pursuing a new job opportunity. While it’s tempting to window shop and see what kind of positions or compensation packages are available, recruiters treat every candidate as if they have serious intent. Hours of work goes into preparing a candidate’s submission package for each position that is applied to. Candidates can quickly earn a bad reputation among recruiters and hiring facilities when they reject multiple job offers. If you’re genuinely curious about the current job market, there is nothing wrong with being honest and straightforward with your physician recruiter. Let them know you’re just looking for information and that you’re not ready to make a change at the present time. Your honesty and consideration will lay a great foundation for when you are ready to pursue something new.
4. Be Honest
One of the biggest roadblocks to success when working with a physician recruiter is not being honest about your partnerships with other recruiters and not disclosing what job opportunities you are pursuing on your own. While you have every right to work with multiple recruiters and to pursue opportunities that you find, doing so increases the likelihood that you will be double submitted to an open position. While this may not seem like a big deal, the truth is that many hiring managers take this as a sign that a candidate is disorganized and will eliminate them from the prospective candidate pool, especially for competitive opportunities.
A professional physician recruiter, like the ones at Premier Physician Services LLC, will never contact another agency that you’re working with or a facility that you’ve directly applied to. However, they will work tirelessly to ensure you are not double submitted to an opportunity, preserving your reputation and increasing the likelihood of you landing a job.
5. Take Notes
Staying organized is of paramount importance when working with a physician recruiter. For that reason, many candidates find it highly beneficial to have a dedicated place where they can keep detailed notes on the hiring process. Candidates will want to keep track of:
- What jobs they have applied to on their own;
- What recruiter/agency has submitted them to what job;
- What conversations they have had (and with whom); and
- Where they are in the hiring process for each opportunity.
While taking these types of notes may require an investment of time, this process will be highly beneficial for your job search. For instance, you will be able to have efficient conversations with your recruiter regarding interviews, next steps and new opportunities (i.e. you won’t struggle to remember how the conversation went with that one hiring manager). Furthermore, you will be able to ensure that you are not inadvertently double submitted to an opportunity.
6. Be Open to Feedback
Have you ever wondered if your resume sets you apart from the competition? Have you ever wanted more feedback after a job interview, beyond the standard “you’re hired” or “thanks, but no thanks?” A physician recruiter is in a terrific position to provide you with this type of invaluable feedback. Their work with multiple doctors and facilities ensures they have an accurate pulse on what’s available in the marketplace and what hiring managers are looking for. Furthermore, there is a good chance that they have insider knowledge about what you can say/do to enhance the likelihood of getting the job. Most likely, your physician recruiter will be proactive and reach out to you with the feedback and insights you need to secure the job. However, don’t be afraid to ask for their advice, especially when you’re uncertain of the best way to proceed.
7. Keep in Touch
There are several reasons why you should stay in contact with your physician recruiter after you’ve landed a job. For starters, you may decide that the position is not a good long-term fit and that you want to pursue a different opportunity after your contract is finished or after you have been at the facility for a while. Additionally, hospitals and healthcare facilities are constantly evaluating and modifying their staffing models, and this sometimes results in headcount reductions. Staying in regular contact with your recruiter is a safety net for your career. One email every 2-3 months that keeps your recruiter up to date on your employment plans can go a long way in ensuring continual employment. Also, it is important to remember that the credentialing process for a physician at a new facility can take up to 30 days. The more notice that you can give your physician recruiter about desired employment changes, the more effective they can be in meeting your needs.
Your physician recruiter is your biggest advocate when it comes to finding a new position. By following the seven tips outlined above, you will create a beneficial partnership that will help you achieve your long-term career goals. If you would like more information on working with a recruiter from Premier Physician Services, fill out our contact form and we will be in touch shortly.