Attracting passive candidates is the Holy Grail for most physician recruiters. A mere 14 percent of physicians are searching job listings or actively looking for employment, so your pool of passive candidates is a whopping 86 percent!
You’re tasked with sourcing quality physicians in a market where physician turnover is starting to climb, and more and more job offers are being declined due to competitive offers or even counter offers from current employers. Physician shortages also abound, and increases in the number of new physicians entering the workforce remain modest.
The reality is that all physicians are keeping their eyes open. You know hospital employment among physicians is rapidly gaining popularity, something we often boil down to costs and red tape associated with the “business” of medicine. Spelled out, that means high overhead costs, reimbursement cuts, lack of resources to comply with the Affordable Care Act, and more.
According to a recent survey from Jackson Healthcare, the number of hospital-employed primary care physicians increased from ten to 20 percent between 2012 to 2014, while physicians who owned single-specialty private care practices dipped from 12 to 7 percent.
More than 200,000 U.S. physicians are now employees, and 3 in 4 medical residents will start their career as employees of a medical group, hospital or faculty plan." - Navigant Healthcare
A Fresh Look at Physician Employment by Hospitals, written by Paul Keckley, Ph.D. of Navigant Center for Healthcare Research and Policy Analysis, says it's no wonder physicians are trading the autonomy of private practice and seeking security in hospital-employed medical groups. "Hospitals are consolidating to achieve scale. It’s healthcare’s version of Darwinism – the survival of the fittest requires adaptation,” says Keckley.
In tandem with the Healthcare Financial Management Association, Navigant Healthcare recently gathered impressions from administrators at 44 hospital-sponsored group practices. They asked the burning question:
What keeps healthcare administrators up at night?
It turns out, hospital administrators are losing sleep over three concerns: operations, compensation and – you guessed it – recruitment: “We worry about how we will recruit new physicians to join the group and sustain its growth.”
So we have recruiting concerns and a majority of candidates who are passive. How do you attract them? Use social recruiting. Some of these ideas just happen to address common frustrations about recruiters anyway, so use these and it's a win all the way around:
Know the challenges your candidates face
If you think physician recruiting is difficult in this digital social era, try being a physician – keeping patient information secure is growing more problematic and complicated. HIPAA violations may seem like a large-organization problem, but considering that many breaches are a result of employee theft and carelessness, smaller practices are at risk. The issue goes beyond fines physicians face, too – a HIPAA violation can destroy patient trust.
This year, physicians are navigating several other tough obstacles, too: Financial penalties for practices that don't attest meaningful use (or MU2); the shift to value-based payments under the Affordable Care Act; and the International Classification of Diseases under the Affordable Care Act, 10th Version (or ICD-10) transition deadline arrives in October. If this is all news to you, we suggest you dig into Modern Medicine's Top 15 challenges facing physicians in 2015.
Know your positions & sell the discussion
How much do you really know about the positions you’re pitching to candidates? If you can’t answer detailed questions about the position (remember, your candidates have colleagues and friends in the field they can ask), you won’t have much credibility.
Nor should your Job Posts be cookie-cutter. Lou Adler, a renowned author and the CEO of The Adler Group often says you shouldn’t sell the job to passive candidates anyway – you should sell the discussion. This means you start by determining just what a candidate would require to seriously consider switching jobs. Many physician recruiters are asking their candidates to relocate, too. Do your research first and you can upsell the new opportunity or destination.
Do your research before you reach out to a candidate
Researching physician candidates before you reach out is the most effective way to recruit passive candidates, because the only way you’ll get a candidate to reveal anything of importance is if you earn the right to ask the right questions. If you're knowledgeable about the position and how a candidate's skills and experience will fit the position you have the start of a conversation. Did you read a physician's Doximity profile? Did you Google them for more details? If you don’t have a good understanding of a physician’s capabilities and what specific skills they bring to the table, why bother reaching out at all? It bugs the physicians and it bogs you down.
Lead the conversation with your candidates
Physician candidates are going to ask you the basic deatils about compensation and location, but first you need to get them talking. If you've done your homework you can control the conversation.
One great thing about passive candidates? Your initial contact can be a simple introduction to you and your company (because they know nothing about you). Give them a few reasons why you’re reaching out – and why a the position is relevant to their experience and why they'd make a great fit.
Communicate, communicate, communicate
Don’t be guilty of being that physician recruiter who only reaches out when it’s convenient for you. Even if a physician isn’t right (right now) for a specific opportunity, stay in touch. You reached out – keep reaching out.
Unfortunately, the process of hiring a physician is a lot like glaciers and snails – famously slow. Physician recruiters have always had to work hard to sell opportunities to potential candidates, but social recruiting means exposing this opportunity to the broadest pool of available talent – passive physician candidates – is much easier. Social recruiting enables passive candidates who would never take the time to comb through job postings to become familiar with you and your company and stay informed about potential opportunities. Even better, because they're not out there looking for new opportunities, they're probably not interviewing with anyone else.
Doximity Talent Finder is the platform that enables social physician recruiting on Doximity. It’s valuable because you don’t have to cull through broad social networks to find physician candidates – more than 50% of all U.S. physician are members of the Doximity network. In fact, Doximity membership recently topped 500,000 physicians! If you’re using Doximity Talent finder, you're a social recruiter. If you're not using it yet, try Doximity Talent Finder for free.
Not a social recruiting expert yet? You're not alone. For starters, the terminology alone can trip you up. That's why we created a special glossary for physician recruiters: "44 Social Recruiting Terms Every Physician Recruiter Should Know." Click on the button to get it now!