Redefining Recruitment to Retention

AAPPR Board Corner: Keeping Up with the Pace

By: Stephanie Wright, MSA, CPRP
Board Member


As we begin to settle into the new demands of physician recruiting after a worldwide pandemic, the majority of Physician Recruitment Talent teams have been gifted with high demands to add Physicians and Advanced Practice Providers as soon as possible to the more challenging medical specialties. Organizations are finding they need to rebuild and replenish the workforce after the pandemic and get ahead of strategic plans developed without understanding the shortages of Physicians and other Providers forecasted by X specialty.

Our organizations are desperate for us to assist in solving the staffing and growth strategies they have planned quickly. It leaves us asking, “what can I do to fill the gap?” Typically, summer is a hectic time for physician recruitment teams, and we tend to revert to strategies that have been tried and true. Methods include email campaigns, marketing at related specialty conferences, career fairs, texting, social media, etc. Often as in-house recruiters, we decide to walk the road alone as long as possible before we cry out for mercy and engage the assistance of others. Yet, I believe we must abandon our thoughts of independence to achieve our big wins and embrace the true team model. That means we must consult, partner, and add resources in ways we previously considered taboo. Even in sports that are deemed solo efforts, a NASCAR Driver has a pit crew, the NFL has special teams that just kick, and golf has a caddie to advise on which club to use, the distance to the hole, and any unforeseen rugged terrain which could interrupt the ball finding the cup. If we think about it, there is always a consultant, coach, prep/service team, and other partners within most endeavors.

We need to engage in conversations with our internal stakeholders, Physician Leaders, and other key stakeholders to update interview timeframes and our processes, and reassess candidate profiling requests to refresh everyone’s expectations on timing, review any data, activities, and responses you have collected to reset the conversation.

Take a moment, to be honest. You need help! We must consider bringing other aligned partners (aka. search firms and other partners) into our conversations and strategic planning as soon as possible. Remember the goal, which has been stated so perfectly by PracticeLink, Recruit, Hire and Heal. All things aside, we need to move faster, expand applicant pools, and get our pipelines full to ensure the best outcomes.

And we need to use our best resource, Physicians. Physician referrals are some of the most solid and sure bet referrals. So we must encourage and work with our leadership to develop a Physician Referral program that provides financial incentive payments.

Remember, you are not alone in your race. Pause, breathe, start a conversation on AAPR’s chat, and use this wonderful community for support as we are all frenemies in the same race and have real empathy for the unique situations only found in our industry. Pace yourself, make a reasonable plan with reachable goals, and remain in the game.