Physician Recruiter Tackles Back-to-Back Nephrology Searches in Utah


The latest projections from the Association of American Medical Colleges suggest that by 2034, the United States will experience a shortage of between 37,800 and 124,000 physicians. However, healthcare organizations are already experiencing the impact of the physician shortage, with some specialties feeling it more than others. Nephrology, for example, is seeing a notable decline in trainees. In fact, the American Society of Nephrology reports that the number of applicants for nephrology residencies has steadily declined over the past decade, which is one of many factors contributing to the difficulty of hiring nephrologists.

When one Salt Lake City private practice needed a nephrologist, the leadership team came directly to Jackson Physician Search. We had successfully worked with the group in other locations, so they knew they could count on us for transparency and results. Director of Recruiting Misha Fabick took charge of the search and was clear with the client about the challenging road ahead. It was not unusual for a nephrology search to take a year or more, as there simply aren’t enough nephrologists coming out of training to fill every open position. The client understood and agreed to be patient while also promising to act quickly whenever Misha presented a candidate. They were committed to the partnership.

Learning the Culture of the Organization

Misha had lengthy discussions with stakeholders to understand better the group’s culture and preferences for the role. The practice had several physicians who had started their careers with the group, and the more tenured physicians enjoyed mentoring and shaping new talent. Misha noted that a recent graduate would likely be the best fit. She would use this insight to inform her search strategy.

Misha crafted a physician job ad highlighting the many benefits of the opportunity and distributed it via Jackson Physician Search’s vast physician job board network, including niche nephrology job boards. The marketing team also sent an email campaign to nephrologists in the database. Misha knew the ad would attract some applicants but refused to sit back and wait. She leveraged the many sourcing tools available to her and went looking for the right candidate.

Exceeding Expectations

Misha prepared for a lengthy search, so it was a pleasant surprise when she connected with Dr. L, a transplant nephrologist seeking an opportunity in Utah. While the group wasn’t specifically looking for someone with transplant experience, Misha took a chance and presented him to the group. Sure enough, they were thrilled to have a potential candidate with this background. Dr. L spoke with the Director of Operations by phone, and the client quickly arranged to have him come to Salt Lake City for an on-site physician interview. Shortly after, he signed a contract into his new role in fewer than 100 days after the start of the search.

The client was thrilled. They were so satisfied that they asked Misha to find a second nephrologist. She continued screening applicants and combing databases for the right candidate, but no one seemed to be the best fit. She worried her quick success with Dr. L had set unrealistic expectations, but she persevered, keeping the client updated and shifting strategies when necessary.

A Personal and Professional Match 

Eventually, Misha connected with Dr. F, a nephrology resident completing her training in Seattle. When Misha and Dr. F spoke on the phone, it was instantly clear she would be a great match. Not only did Dr. F’s professional qualifications and goals align with the client’s, but the location was also ideal. Dr. F was an avid snowboarder and hiker, so she wanted to remain out west. She also had a good friend living in Salt Lake City and was excited to reconnect.

The client was impressed by Dr. F when they spoke on the phone and soon extended an invitation for an on-site interview. Though the group offered to pay for her accommodations, Dr. F opted to stay with her friend. These arrangements worked out well, as the friend knew exactly how to showcase her city for Dr. F. The pair had a wonderful time exploring, and Dr. F felt right at home in Salt Lake. When the interview went well, she felt she had also found her professional home. The group made her an offer, and she happily accepted.

Secrets of Recruitment Success

Misha’s work with this client demonstrates the, at times, unpredictable nature of a physician search. Sometimes, the stars align, and the perfect candidate comes along quickly. Other times, a recruiter does everything in their power, but it takes time for that just-right candidate to surface. Misha diligently leveraged the Jackson Physician Search digital recruitment strategy and trusted the process would deliver. She was correct; it brought double the success–once right away and again a few months later. The client was happy to have two nephrologists joining the team and will undoubtedly look to Misha again with future needs.

Does your organization have a challenging position to fill? The recruitment team at Jackson Physician Search has the skills and expertise to accelerate your efforts. Reach out today to begin a dedicated partnership.   

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