The Case of the Missing Locums Candidate

The Case of the Missing Locums Candidate

In today’s market, scarcity drives competition, and healthcare recruitment is no exception. Physicians and advanced practitioners are among the scarcest groups within healthcare personnel. As long as the demand for qualified physicians increases while the number of practicing physicians decreases, the physician shortage will remain. That’s where locum tenens comes in. As we learned in last week’s “Paging All Doctors! Combating the Physician Shortage”, locums use can aid in the physician shortage and has increased drastically within recent years.

Healthcare providers working in the locum tenens industry most likely have offers coming at every angle. Nothing feels worse than losing a prospective hire simply because they weren’t contacted in an appropriate or timely matter. As a physician recruiter, you may have been left thinking, “What happened to my candidate?” To prevent this, timeliness, compensation, and communication are all very important when interacting with your candidate throughout the screening process.

The importance of timeliness while working with locum tenens candidates cannot be stressed enough. Good things may come to those who wait, but the best things come to those who do. It’s not uncommon for providers, especially those in primary care specialties, to simultaneously submit to several opportunities at once. The best doctors expect feedback within no more than 72 hours after a CV is presented. If you wait more than 72 hours your candidate has most likely moved on. This doesn’t necessarily mean making an offer within the first 72 hours, however, it is important to provide feedback outlining the level of interest in their credentials and experience ASAP.

Additionally, the compensation offered to your doctor should always be fair and competitive for the current market of that particular specialty. Delaying talk of figures, or skipping it altogether, can land you in hot water and trigger apprehension in your candidate. This risks a more assertive competitor beating you to the punch. If vanishing candidates seem to be a reoccurring theme, they may be viewing the compensation offered as inappropriately low.

Finally, communication is key. Of course you will explain your value to your candidate and advise why they should work with you, however, don’t forget to express the value you see in them. If they believe that you are truly interested in them, they will be more likely to stick around for the screening process. Encourage open communication between you and your provider, and always respond in a quick and honest manner. Allowing your candidate to participate in the process will help you both better determine if the relationship is a match.

As a physician recruiter, what do you think is the key to keeping a potential hire from start to finish? To read more on this, please visit Medical Doctor Associates.


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