By Don Weis, Senior Vice President, Physician Search
Healthcare leaders are trained to make thoughtful physician hiring decisions – carefully screening and interviewing potential staff. But in a resource-constrained healthcare market, especially in skills like Primary Care, it is just as important for employers to make a great impression as it is for the physicians they are interviewing. An on-site interview is an ideal way to further assess a physician’s fit, and also an important chance to “sell” your job offer. Stand out from other potential employers by creating a red carpet experience for visiting candidates.
- Make a memorable first impression. Arrange transportation from the airport or hotel to the healthcare facility, and have a knowledgeable representative available to promptly greet and guide them for the day.
- Determine individual candidate needs and interests, in advance. Are there personal concerns regarding school districts, housing and lifestyle? Are there professional goals, such as physician participation in committees, establishment of a private practice or concerns about how incentive compensation is derived? With this information in-hand, customize the candidate’s experience accordingly.
- Include family members in the visit. For those residing with spouses, children or parents, family concerns are a significant consideration in taking a new position, especially one that may require relocation. Giving family members the opportunity to get familiar with the community and addressing their needs can favorably influence a candidate’s decision.
- Arrange time with peers. Candidates often find their most valuable insight on a potential employer is gathered through time spent with peers. Carve out time for peer discussion, selecting those whom might share similar backgrounds or experiences, when possible.
- Clarify the role and topics of all interviews. Take care to brief all interviewees on the candidate’s background and interests. Clarify further information to be gathered from the candidate, but as important information to be delivered or emphasized, such as management style, organizational priorities and culture, benefits and incentives, etc.
- Provide prompt, clear follow-up. Assign a representative responsible for following through on any additional phone interviews or information requested during the visit. The idea is to create positive and memorable impressions before, during, and after the experience.
- Lagging can kill the deal. Don’t forget you are not the only game in town. Assume your physician candidates are being courted by other employers, and show your interest and commitment by being prompt with letters of intent and contracts. The most successful organizations have a sample contract draft ready to help speed the legal review process. Set clear expectations for when final contracts will be sent, as well as when they should be returned.
Taking a proactive and thoughtful approach to interactions with physician candidates can help healthcare organizations compete more effectively for their top-choice physicians, and increase their probability of securing the right hire.
For more information on the Family Medicine Resident Survey conducted by Cejka Search, visit Cejka Search Insights and download a copy of the report.