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From Birthplace to Workplace: Physician Recruiter Discovers Ideal Local Candidate


When a Tennessee hospital partnered with Jackson Physician Search to recruit a local candidate, the unbeatable sourcing strategies of Senior Director of Recruiting Christen Kolloff and Search Consultant Katherine Hurford uncovered the ideal physician who couldn’t have had closer ties.

From Birthplace to Workplace: Physician Recruiter Discovers Ideal Local Candidate

“Who is your ideal physician candidate?” This is the first question our physician recruiters ask when they visit a new client. They seek to understand not only the minimum requirements and qualifications for the job but also the nice-to-have characteristics and traits. Doing this allows the recruiter to draw a picture of the ideal candidate by whom all applicants will be measured. While clients are encouraged to be flexible in their expectations, the recruiter always works to find candidates who match the “ideal.”

When Senior Director of Recruiting Christen Kolloff visited a hospital in Tennessee that recently decided to begin a physician recruitment partnership, she came away with a clear picture of the candidate the organization hoped for. After experiencing tremendous growth in recent years, they sought multiple hospitalists trained in internal medicine who could handle a high volume of patients. It was also important to leadership that the candidate have ties to the area. The ideal candidate would be ready to build a life in the middle Tennessee metro.

Christen set out to find the candidate who checked the boxes. She first leveraged the Jackson Physician Search network of physician job boards to distribute the hospitalist job ad. Christen received some interest and was working with several candidates when Search Consultant Katherine Hurford reached out about a newly trained physician who might be right for the position. Katherine had come across Dr. M’s profile in an online physician database, and based on his location in middle Tennessee, she thought Christen might want to speak to him. He had recently completed his residency in family medicine but was seeking an emergency medicine or hospitalist job in the area. Katherine suspected he could fit well and shared his information with Christen.

An Ideal Candidate Right Next Door

Christen reached out to Dr. M to gauge his interest in the hospitalist job opening. Dr. M had been scouring the job boards of the local hospitals, but he had not applied to the hospital’s opportunity specifically because of the internal medicine requirement. Christen confessed she wasn’t sure they would consider him for this reason, but she wanted to learn more about him. If he seemed like a good match, she would present him to the client and advocate on his behalf.

The more Christen learned about Dr. M, the more confident she was that he was the best fit for her client. The hospital was not merely in the same metro area as Dr. M but literally down the street from where he lived. In fact, he had been born there! He also knew several physicians on staff because he had completed a few rotations there during his training.

“The hospital’s CEO has a lot of pride in the town,” Christen said. “So I knew he would love that Dr. M was born and raised there and wanted to build his adult life there as well.”

Christen was right. The client immediately set up a call, and the process moved quickly from there. Because he was local, there was nothing to delay the on-site interview. As Dr. M toured the facility and met with leadership, everyone could sense that he belonged there. Though he didn’t have the internal medicine background they were looking for, he had already passed his boards and was in the process of getting his Tennessee license. Because of his ties to the area, he was extremely likely to stay long-term if hired. It was a winning situation for everyone.

Secrets of Physician Recruitment Success

Certainly, the vast resources of Jackson Physician Search played a part in the success of this search. In addition to launching a national digital campaign around the job ad, Christen had a research consultant sifting through multiple physician databases for potential candidates. That consultant was able to see beyond the mismatched specialty and identify a potential match overall.

Christen’s recruitment expertise allowed her to discern that Dr. M would be a great fit quickly. She knew how important it was to leadership that the candidate has ties to the area, so when she learned that Dr. M was born in that very hospital and grew up in the community, she had to present him. Fortunately, the client was flexible enough to see Dr. M for the ideal candidate he was.

“On paper, Dr. M wasn’t a perfect match for the job, but with his deeply rooted ties to the area – and to the hospital itself – I knew they had to meet him,” Christen says. “I was happy to advocate for him, and ultimately, the client was thrilled to find such a great fit right in their own backyard.”

Katherine and Christen’s teamwork was key to making this connection. Dr. M would not have applied to the job ad as it was listed, and if he had, the client would have been unlikely to respond to an application from a family medicine physician. It was Katherine’s proactive research and Christen’s outreach that led to the client hiring an ideal hometown candidate.

If your organization is struggling to find the ideal candidates it’s looking for, the recruitment team at Jackson Physician Search has the resources and expertise to serve as an extension of your team and deliver results. Reach out to our team of physician recruiters today to learn more.

Key Takeaways

  1. Jackson Physician Search recruiters work together to ensure each healthcare organization hires the candidate it needs, regardless of if a search is directly assigned to them.
  2. Jackson Physician Search’s digital recruitment strategy provides unbeatable candidate acquisition through a variety of databases.
  3. To find the candidate that is the best fit, clients often need to identify which qualities to prioritize, and which can be flexible.

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