The Association for Advancing Physician and Provider Recruitment (AAPPR) is redefining recruitment to retention and is the only professional organization where physician and provider recruitment leaders and others who influence recruitment, onboarding and retention can connect, learn and advance their careers.
A new year brings a fresh start, setting new goals and thinking about the future. Now that 2022 has arrived, it also has me reflecting on the events of the past year. The resiliency we collectively have to endure and overcome is inspiring. Even in struggle, I recognize the opportunities for change & innovation that the year brought to our profession. Much of which inspired notable and historic accomplishments for AAPPR and our Members.
In 2021, knowing that our traditional in-person Conference was not going to be an option, AAPPR pivoted and stood up our first ever Virtual Conference, hosting over 600 attendees and offering a virtual translation of our much-beloved annual conference. We held the first ever Leaders Connect in-person event, with a focus for leaders and stakeholders in the provider recruitment space. Additionally, the launch of the AAPPR Academy brings all our tools and resources together for a one-stop, easy to navigate, virtual learning experience.
AAPPR published its very first White Paper – a collaborative effort between the Board and a panel of leaders within our own membership – calling out the alarming trends and shifts we’re seeing in our industry impacted by the pandemic. In complement, AAPPR published 3 research reports on COVID’s impact on physician career changes, recruitment, onboarding, and compensation structure and benefits. In addition, the Annual Benchmark Survey hit a record high number of participants and search data points – inclusive of nearly 170 member organizations and almost 17,000 searches – shattering our prior year record of 11,000 searches.
Being at the forefront of industry trends and shifting landscapes is critical to supporting AAPPR’s strategic imperative of elevating our profession and our members as the source of knowledge and truth when it comes to recruiting and retaining physicians and providers. It is critical to us as a Board in ensuring that we are not only supporting our Members with the tools and resources they need, but always thinking ahead with foresight to advance our profession along the recruitment to retention continuum.
So, in addition to reflecting, we also start to ask, ‘what comes next’?
In 2022, I will reach a milestone in my own career – 20 years working in the physician and provider recruitment. From coordinator to recruiter to consultant to leader, I’ve worked within a multitude of care models, from fee-for-service, multi-hospital integrated academic systems, to capital-backed, technology driven health startups out of Silicon Valley – and everything in between. Experiences like these shape us as professionals and how we see things. The diversity of my own experience has shown me how much variety exists within our profession when it comes to
• how we do our work,
• what drives it and
• who the key contributors are.
The evolution of our industry is remarkable to watch.
Our traditional “in-house” recruiter lines are a bit greyer – with movement of physician and provider recruiters back and forth across the employer vs agency models. We have recruitment teams now that operate purely on production models, particularly those in the VC, pre-IPO space as new care businesses emerge every day and stretch to meet aggressive growth & hiring goals. As leaders in our industry, we need to consistently ask
• What is changing and how can we proactively anticipate the needs that come along with that change?
As we think towards the future, I challenge us to consider what that looks like.
• How is our work evolving?
• Who are the people influencing that change?
• Where are the content experts, the thought-leaders and the experiences that shape how we do our work and touch the physicians, providers, and communities whose lives we impact?
• Are the influencers part of our conversation and, if not, how do we invite them to the table?
• How do we continue to embrace and welcome change in a way that only makes us better – creating opportunity for learning and collaboration across the spectrum of our profession?
AAPPR embraces the change that is occurring and is eager to see what the future holds.
Greetings and Happy Holidays from the AAPPR Board of Directors!
While we wind down the calendar year 2021, I encourage many of you to take some time to reflect. Reflect with your teams on all of the achievements, growth, and successes that have been fostered this year. The AAPPR board of directors met for a final time in 2021 participating in a 2-day session. The first day we met with leaders from our Strategic Corporate Partners and the task proposed was not simple. Our goal was to foster relationships between and among AAPPR and its Strategic Corporate Partners by sharing our insights and engaging in a robust conversation about our collective abilities to influence this profession and generate growth. This blog could quickly turn into a whitepaper if I notated each beg, brag, or what if that the group worked through. Together, with our Strategic Corporate Partners we also explored ways to elevate our industry. Let us just say many ideas were spurred and thoughtful discussion was had. On Saturday, we wrapped up our sessions with a full agenda. We focused heavily on our strategic plan progress and governance details. Please stay updated in 2022 as we roll out new programming material that are truly ground breaking. We welcome new technology such as our chat app that you can download now by searching Connected Community in the App Store. Please be sure that our annual conference is on your 2022 calendar as you prepare for the New Year. We look forward to seeing many familiar and new faces in-person in April at our Chicago annual conference.
On behalf of the AAPPR Board of Directors we wish you a safe and happy holiday season!
One of the highlights of my childhood growing up in Chicago was the Christmas season, especially spending time in the downtown area. Like thousands of others, I remember hopping on the “L-Train” and, once there with anticipation and excitement, visiting the many window displays for the major department stores: Lord & Taylor, Marshall Fields & Co., Carson Pirie Scott & Co., etc. along State Street and the Magnificent Mile (if you’re from the Midwest, you know!) These displays captured the imagination and ‘wow’ of Christmas – all the sights, sounds, and trappings were inescapable. Of course, the store’s goal was to ‘wow’ you enough at the window that you’d come inside. True to form, the window display didn’t come close to the grandeur one witnessed walking through the entire store once inside. I can feel the excitement like I’m there right now!
Over the last 18 months, we’ve witnessed an unprecedented level of national interest, attention, and action centered around Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion – particularly in the corporate/organization space. In fact, in a recent search, I noted over 20,000 vacant ‘Chief Diversity’ officer and similar manager positions in the U.S. alone. Recruiting and retaining a diverse workforce has become priority #1. To succeed in this journey, the first question for organizations to ask is, “Does my organization represent my display window?” It’s a tough question and one that requires a great deal of courage. However, it is precisely the question that you – my physician and provider recruiting colleague – are uniquely qualified to influence and facilitate discussions as C-Suite decision-makers develop organizational strategies and action plans.
From this place of excitement, I invite you to become a part of the AAPPR Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion Advisory Council! I’ve always believed the physician recruiter’s natural alignment with the C-Suite is paramount to organizational success, and let’s face it, there’s no one better to guide local D&I efforts than You! I presented the “display window” analogy in my organization, and it simply opened the door for meaningful dialogue that flowed from anxiety to awareness to action. These types of conversations can improve D&I in your local provider workforce and lead an exploration into matters related to healthcare access and equity. The spectrum for opportunity can potentially move your organization to reflect the community it serves!
As your own organization’s resident expert, your role is significant! It’s a principal aim of the AAPPR DEIAC to equip and empower our members to lead these efforts. I look forward to future discussion around productively partnering with your executive leadership to make the organization reflect its public-facing display!
Has anyone noticed how much higher recruiter turnover is these days? Or employee turnover in general? There are a lot of people “on the move”. Many of us are reached out to for positions weekly, and sometimes daily. We are all sought after, and we are all burned out. And who knows, the grass might be greener on the other side??
A July 27, 2021, article on LinkedIn Talent Blog stated, “New Data Shows a Soaring Demand for Recruiters and Where You Can Find More of Them”. This Blog quoted that there are 364,970 Recruiter jobs advertised on LinkedIn Worldwide. And for comparison they stated that there are 342,586 Software Engineers roles open on LinkedIn Worldwide.
Recruiters are in VERY high demand across all industries and all over the globe (not just in healthcare in the U.S.), especially since the world has seen some signs of recovery from the pandemic.
What can we, as individuals, do to keep our teams together? As we all know, strong relationships = strong results. As our friend, Philosopher Aristotle said: “the whole is greater than the sum of its parts”. As a well-oiled team we can get much more done than each of us individually.
So how can we keep each other engaged and motivated? We probably can’t stop people from leaving for large pay increases or promotions, so how can we let our teams know that we love working together and that we appreciate them?
I started sending handwritten notes to individuals on the team who I felt could use an encouraging word. And when I say team, I don’t just mean those who are in the same department as me. For me a team consists of all who work together for a common goal! I am fully aware everyone is going above and beyond, and everyone works morning, noon, and night in our industry. I want them to know they are appreciated!
I have also started picking up the phone and letting someone know they have done a great job with this hire in this very difficult market. Under “normal” circumstances I might have sent an email: “great job”. That is just too easy! In this electronic and remote day of age, we need more personal touches. Send something small for a birthday, get some people together on a video call and sing “happy birthday” together. We warn everybody before we do this that they most likely will end up with a headache, but they all absolutely love the fact that we take a few moments and celebrate their special day. Do not lose those personal connections and let’s keep supporting each other now more than ever. And when a new recruiter/sourcer/coordinator/credentialer joins your organization, be extra supportive and remember your first few weeks in a new organization. We are all in the same business; making sure our patients have world class care. Let’s do this for them; they deserve a strong team!
It’s Friday, and you have a physician who starts Monday, and the medical staff office hasn’t cleared them for a start. Meanwhile, you have a recent hire who has questions about their offer letter. Oh wait, you have to work with the department for another physician for last-minute coverage? But hang on, you also have to post the internal medicine position your leader wanted two months ago for a start date in the next three months. Then, whoops, your email just notified you that another physician resigned, and a department lead just sent you a text message saying they need an advanced practitioner partner and asking when you can meet to discuss the recruitment strategy. And the list goes on and on. Sound familiar?
As if the day-to-day challenges of recruiting talented physicians and providers weren’t enough, many of us find ourselves asking how we are going to get the job done…in a timely way, under budget, without adding resources, and delivering what seemingly becomes an all-too-often quest to help educate and realign stakeholder expectations.
From becoming and staying a destination employer to having the selectivity of candidate-of-choice, today’s recruitment environment leaves little in the way of maintaining a competitive advantage to recruit exceptional talent.
Undoubtedly, the success you encounter is not easy, and the days of advocacy for your needs are few and far between. But there are ways to stage your best advocates for success — your C-Suite and leaders. Really! Despite the unrelenting question of ‘where’s my hire?’, instilling their needed trust and support for you and your ideas requires not only your knowledge to speak their language, but to do so in a meaningful and effective way to help remove recruitment barriers and level-set expectations for an increasingly competitive market.
The art and science behind the language of the C-Suite and leaders is fueled by none other than data — and, more importantly, the interpretation/translation of that data into action. After all, data points are meaningless numbers without the understanding and recommendations of physician and provider recruitment leaders like you. Data fueling a recruitment strategy yields greater value by the C-Suite and senior leaders for a more effective and efficient approach to recruitment with greater confidence that clinical workforce growth goals can be achieved. Without data and value analysis, the risk of losing millions of dollars in lost revenue, expensive position vacancies, and perhaps costly temporary staffing resources.
For key data and strategies to help your C-Suite and leaders become recruitment advocates, please download our Creating Advocates Among C-Suite and Leadership quick guide.
Ready for more C-Suite/leader language? Be on the lookout for the next blog post, Let the Numbers do the Talking: Developing Effective Executive Dashboards to Showcase Your Success!
It has been 17 months since the COVID-19 Pandemic started, and many of us vacated our offices, never to return. Now we are embarking on the new horizon of the post-pandemic world and where we work. As we enter the fall of 2021, many organizations are making declarations around the future of one’s workplace. A silver lining for me in this is that before the COVID-19 Pandemic, my organization had little to no work-from-home opportunities. Fast forward to now, and my organization is completely on board with offering this option for applicable employees. This newfound flexibility is a welcome game-changer and something that has been a long time coming.
But these changes have not come without testing our resiliency as an industry, as many of us were forced to change how we connect and where we do our work almost overnight. A common personality trait for recruiters is extroversion. We are energized by engaging with our recruits, our stakeholders, and our colleagues. You can feel some of that energy in a virtual format, but it will never be fully recreated. One thing that cannot be recreated in a virtual world is the spontaneity of running into a hiring manager in the hallway and finally getting the answer to that email that has been sitting in their inbox. So much of our work is accomplished ad-lib.
For those of you who may not be returning to the office or for those that will be working a hybrid model of split time between the office and home. How will you continue to foster that engaged energy and impromptu collaboration? I will be working a hybrid schedule officially starting this fall. For the days I am on-site, I will ensure I walk my rounds because I never know who I might run into. For the days that I am home, I have weekly virtual calls scheduled with my colleagues. Even if we do not have agenda items to discuss, I have found these frequent check-ins helpful to feel connected.
It’s been fascinating to hear how our members have also stayed connected. I’ve had the opportunity to sit in on several AAPPR Roundtables. Through this, I learned how AAPPR members, all over the country and Canada, pivoted for continued success in their roles across the provider recruitment spectrum. One theme emerged across these conversations; no one stopped recruiting or doing the work! Rather, they modified, adjusted, and carried on. They were proving that no matter “where you work,” you can still stay connected to your mission, your candidates, and your colleagues, even in a newly modified workplace.
As a member of the AAPPR Board of Directors, it’s important for members to know that as an organization we fully support all of the regional Affiliate groups and encourage you to become involved with one closest to you. In thinking back to the whirlwind of my first year as a new physician recruiter, I had so much to learn in a short time. Nobody goes to school to be a physician recruiter. What stands out from that first year was my predecessor insisting I immediately join the regional ISPR (Illinois Staff Physician Recruiters) and national AAPPR (formerly ASPR) recruiter groups. After joining, I was quickly welcomed to the industry, provided educational resources, and mentors I could call for help. I hope you could say the same when you joined.
As a solo physician recruiter, I quickly felt a sense of security and inclusion within both organizations. AAPPR provided me with instant access to a huge volume of education, technical tools, and other recruiters. I had a place to find the answers to my questions. Yet it was my affiliate group where I distinctly remember the sense of recruiter community to be unique and memorable. I found that I could easily connect with them personally, due to our geographic familiarity and convenience of meeting together. They knew where my little town was and we often had someone in common, like the Six Degrees of Kevin Bacon. Our meetings and conferences always left me feeling understood and a part of a bigger network.
Today, as a senior recruiter, my affiliate group and AAPPR synergistically allow me to continue grow as a professional. It has provided me with the opportunity to gain leadership experience that is not always available to physician recruiters within their healthcare organization. In my 18 years as a physician recruiter, my affiliate group colleagues are the people with whom I have shared many professional challenges and successes. When I need advice, they have my back and I have theirs.
The Board and I would like to thank all of the Affiliate group leaders for their time and contributions. They appreciate members who get involved so if you haven’t already engaged with your local group – please consider reaching out.
In April, AAPPR held its annual conference virtually with over 600 members across the United States attending. Over two full days we were able to connect with one another and learn from subject matter experts on a wide variety of topics. As we settle into the summer months and ramp up our onboarding season, I am excited to implement new approaches and processes that were takeaways from our annual conference. For example, I have completely updated my recruitment to retention plan. If you’re not making consistent improvements, your recruitment practices will be out of date in no time. It is hard to articulate the true value of AAPPR’s annual conference. Sure, it is educational, and we are able to connect and learn from our peers, but in reality, it is so much more. The annual conference is hands down my favorite event that AAPPR hosts. If you are a new member or haven’t previously attended, I highly recommend that you save the date and attend next year’s conference in Chicago, April 23-27, 2022.
As a member of AAPPR, you already know that new content and programming are generated weekly. The roundtables that began during the pandemic continue to be extremely helpful and a wonderful way for members to get to know one another. As an independent director of a recruitment team, I do not have the opportunity to bounce ideas off peers. Networking and volunteering through AAPPR provide a support system for me and help me to stay up to date on trends in the industry.
Serving on the Board of Directors, I can attest that the leaders of AAPPR have been very strategic over the years to ensure long-term organizational sustainability for our members. We are so fortunate to have an industry association that supports us through relevant content and education events. The AAPPR live webinar series welcomes a number of speakers year-round to discuss trends and hot topics in recruitment. Whether you are new to the industry or a seasoned professional the webinars are a great way to keep up to date on the latest developments from sourcing through interviewing and from onboarding to retention.
Moving into fall, I am looking forward to the return of in person events at regional affiliate meetings and the opportunity to participate in face-to-face discussions with colleagues from other organizations. The mission of AAPPR is to continue to advance the physician and recruitment profession and careers of our members. With the continuing education opportunities offered to our members both in person and virtually, AAPPR remains the industry leader in physician and provider recruitment.