Senior Search Consultant Stephanie Hutchens recruits the unique physician an even more unique healthcare organization needs.
A family-owned practice in urban New Jersey was searching for a physician who was as unique as the practice itself. Located in a community primarily made up of second-generation Italian immigrants, the administrators hoped to find a physician who spoke Italian.
But this wasn’t the only unique job requirement. The practice itself was unusual in that it served as both a Primary Care office and an Urgent Care. While Urgent Care services were just a small part of the practice, it did mean that the Primary Care physicians had to be ready to do many things in-house that most Primary Care providers wouldn’t normally do – stitches, splints, etc.
The practice searched for six months on its own, while also accepting submissions from contingent recruitment firms. None of the candidates measured up.
“I couldn’t seem to get these other agencies to understand that my practice, which is a Primary Care practice as well as an Urgent Care, isn’t like other practices.” explained the practice manager. “We needed someone who [would be] able to fit in with a well-established team, ready to work, and able to adapt to a [hybrid] Primary Care/Urgent Care setting.”
After months of frustration, the practice manager reached out to Jackson Physician Search for help. After learning about Jackson Physician Search’s 100% digital recruitment strategy and understanding the advantages of working with a permanent physician recruitment partner, the practice manager was eager to see what we could do.
In Pursuit of Perfection
Jackson Physician Search Senior Search Consultant Stephanie Hutchens hopped on a call with the client to learn more about the practice and the physician job opening. Right away, she could see why they were having trouble finding the perfect candidate. While the language requirement was limiting and the compensation package was narrow, the Urgent Care factor was also problematic. Some Primary Care physicians, who hope to build lasting relationships with patients, might be turned off by the idea of offering Urgent Care services to walk-in patients. The practice also saw very few children, which ruled out most Family Medicine physicians. Additionally, the practice’s for-profit status made it challenging to accept visa candidates.
While Stephanie acknowledged the difficulties with the position, she did not advise the client to lower their expectations. Instead, she adjusted the physician job description to emphasize the positive and used every tool in her toolbelt to ensure the job posting was seen by every relevant physician. She also reached out directly to all the local training programs in the hopes of connecting with a resident who fit the description. If the perfect candidate was out there, she would find them.
Fantastico! Recruiter Finds the Perfect Physician, But…
Stephanie’s physician recruitment magic worked! She identified a candidate in a local residency program who matched every requirement. The client was thrilled, and after going through the interview process, the team was ready to extend an offer. Stephanie advised them to tweak the compensation package to make the offer more appealing, which they were happy to do for this perfect candidate.
After careful consideration, the resident chose another offer. The client was devastated, and Stephanie knew it was time as their recruitment partner to advise them to soften their requirements. She asked permission to make the language a preferred requirement rather than a must-have. She also suggested they keep the compensation package “sweeteners” they had added for their perfect candidate. She could highlight the bonus in the job posting and increase the chances of being noticed by the right physician.
The changes broadened the candidate pool, and soon Stephanie presented several candidates she felt would be a good fit. One stood out. Dr. E was finishing her DO residency at a local health system and was looking to remain in the area. Her husband was a surgeon practicing locally and they were expecting their first child.
Dr. E was intrigued by the practice. Her interview went well, and she hit it off with the other physicians. Though qualified in Family Medicine, Dr. E was okay with not treating children. However, she was really hoping to focus on women’s health issues, something of which the practice did not currently see very much. The partners discussed how they might build up a women’s health focus in the practice so she could do more of what she loved. She was excited by their willingness to expand and seemed likely to accept the offer.
Delivering More Than Just Good News
All signs pointed to a signed contract, and yet, Dr. E went silent. Stephanie reached out to her but heard nothing back. She and the client began to worry.
“I wasn’t just worried about the placement, I was worried about Dr. E,” explained Stephanie. I remembered her husband’s name and looked him up on one of the physician databases. I sent him a message and explained who I was and that I just wanted to make sure she was okay. Even if she was no longer interested in the position!”
Dr. E’s husband replied right away. She was very much still interested but had been out of touch due to the arrival of their new baby! All parties were relieved to hear mom and baby were doing well. Dr. E accepted the offer and would be ready to start with the practice in just a few months.
Navigating the Physician Recruitment Journey
Physician recruiters specialize in navigating the twists and turns of the recruitment journey. For Stephanie’s client, the path to Dr. E involved several detours, but they eventually found themselves exactly where they needed to be. The client was thrilled to have Dr. E, and their experience with Jackson Physician Search exceeded all expectations.
The practice manager was happy to recommend Stephanie and Jackson Physician Search:
“I have never seen a recruiter do as much work as Stephanie did between going through resumes and doing initial phone screens with people to see if they would in fact be a good fit before sending them over to me. She was always so positive, even when we had a string of candidates that didn’t work out. Stephanie always believed that the right person was out there, we just had to be patient and we’d find them. I honestly don’t think that I would’ve found such a great fit for our practice without her.”
If your organization needs help filling a particularly challenging position, the Jackson Physician Search team of physician recruitment experts would be happy to help. Contact us today.