Ensuring new hires have a positive relocation experience is critical to start the relationship off well. Recruiters can help by making sure potential candidates have a positive onboarding experience, answering all the candidate’s questions promptly, and helping new physicians feel comfortable about relocating to their new city or state.
In-house recruiters share some of their tips in helping physicians make the most of their relocation experience.
Be honest about your site
Brittany Kulp, senior medical staff recruiter at Tower Health in Allentown, Pennsylvania, loves to promote the Lehigh Valley area. "For people who are looking to live in a big city, we’re an hour away from Philadelphia," Kulp says. "The Lehigh Valley is a beautiful area with affordable housing and many good school districts."
But she also does not want to promise the moon and the stars and have a potential candidate relocate only to realize the area was not what they were anticipating.
While that type of community may hold appeal for families, it might not be the venue that a young, single doctor is seeking. By offering an honest assessment of the workplace and community, including any potential flaws or imperfections, physician recruiters can ensure they are hiring candidates who will be more likely to stay.
Cast a wide net
When conducting a search for a physician, Elizabeth Hedrick, senior physician recruitment and business development specialist at Phelps Health in Rolla, Missouri, does not limit herself to a certain geographic area.
"I make the search as broad as possible, without limitations," she says. "A lot of recruiters tend to think that a doctor who is working in a large urban city won’t want to relocate to a rural area, but I’ve had success in recruiting doctors from big cities who are attracted to the high base salaries we offer in the Midwest, our generous tuition reimbursement, and the promise of practicing medicine at a respected hospital."
Focus on retention and recruiting
While recruiting is important, Kulp notes that retention is equally critical since you do not want your hospital to experience high turnover or unhappy physicians.
"We try to link new physicians to more established physicians who can serve as mentors and answer any questions new staff may have in regards to their job or the community," Kulp says. "We also have events such as an ice hockey game where all of the new physicians can meet and get to know each other and form a support system."
Show passion for your work
Autumn Ashcraft, provider recruitment manager for Borrego Health in Escondido, California, says it is important for physician recruiters to really love connecting people with job opportunities that match their skills and will allow them to flourish.
"Candidates can tell if you don’t stand behind your brand," she says. "It’s important to be flexible and to make the relocation process seamless for physicians, whether that means conducting an interview at 7 p.m. because that’s the only time they have available or helping them with the licensure process."
When she finds a physician who is a good fit for Borrego Health, Ashcraft admits she is often as excited as they are.
"I worked with one doctor recently who was moving from a state with extremely cold winters. He was excited both about the job and the fact that his kids would now be able to play sports year-round," Ashcraft says. "And I was genuinely excited for the new life waiting for both he and his family here in California."