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Worth the Wait: Physician Recruiter Balances Clinic’s Urgent Need and Ideal Candidate’s Timeline


Senior Search Consultant Cori Centerino balanced urgency while focusing on fit in a family medicine search for a clinic struggling to recruit, leading her to find the ideal candidate.

Worth the Wait: Physician Recruiter Balances Clinic’s Urgent Need and Ideal Candidate’s Timeline

Despite a beautiful location in coastal Mississippi, a multi-specialty clinic struggled to hire a much-needed Family Medicine physician. After successfully partnering with Jackson Physician Search in the past, the CEO trusted Senior Search Consultant Cori Centerino to take over the search. Cori was confident that, in time, she would find the right candidate for the clinic. However, the average time to hire a Family Medicine physician nationally is more than seven months, so she prepared her client for a wait.

An Attractive Family Medicine Job Profile

Cori worked with the CEO to create a family medicine job profile that would be sure to attract applicants. In addition to the scenic location, the role was 100% outpatient with the flexibility to choose between a four-, four-and-a-half, or five-day work week. The job would be ideal for a physician prioritizing work-life balance, which Cori knew to be increasingly important to many physicians.

The list of benefits went on. The job came with a signing bonus and 100% loan repayment over time. Also, the clinic was willing to sponsor a J-1 visa should the right candidate need it. Cori featured all of this in the job ad while also noting that the clinic provided care to an underserved patient population. She hoped this would attract mission-minded physicians and rule out those not interested in the work.

The Right Resident for the Job

The family medicine job had a number of attractive qualities, and when Dr. A, a resident training in Alabama, saw the ad, he knew it aligned with what he was looking for in his first physician job. He needed an employer-sponsored J-1 visa, and the location was ideal for him. Plus, after several years of intense residency, finding a job that allowed a healthy work-life balance was extremely important to him (and his wife). The fact that the organization cared for an underserved patient population also appealed to him.

Dr. A applied for the job online, and Cori called him immediately. She knew from their conversation that he would be a great fit, but she worried his timeline was too long. As a resident, he would only be available to start after completing his training the following year. Still, Cori spoke to her client about him, and while the need was indeed urgent, they were willing to wait for the right candidate. The client called Dr. A for a phone interview and invited him to visit the organization for an on-site interview.

It was a few months before Dr. A and his wife could plan a visit, but when they did, the comfort and kindness they experienced blew them away. Dr. A hit it off with his potential colleagues, and both he and his wife loved the town. However, they weren’t in a rush to make a decision.

“He wanted to be sure that he was making the right choice,” explains Cori. “I wanted to give him the time and space he needed while still conveying the urgency of my client. It was a delicate balance.”

Secrets of Family Medicine Physician Recruitment Success

Ultimately, remaining patient with Dr. A paid off. He chose to sign a contract with a commitment to starting with the clinic after completing his training the following summer. For Dr. A, the coastal location and flexibility were attractive, but it was the organization’s willingness to sponsor his J-1 visa waiver and, over time, pay off his student loans that showed their dedication to meeting his needs and made the decision easy.

The clinic did everything possible to create a competitive opportunity, and the combination was successful in attracting and securing the right candidate. While the position was everything Dr. A wanted, this was his first physician job, and he appreciated that Cori did not pressure him to decide before he was 100% certain. This allowed him to explore his options and know that he had found the place he belonged.

Are you seeking to attract top physician candidates to your organization? The recruitment team at Jackson Physician Search has the resources and expertise to boost your efforts, working with organizations large and small across the country seeking physicians in every kind of practice setting. Reach out today to learn more.

Key Takeaways

  1. The unparalleled access to candidates as well as strategic insights that a dedicated physician recruitment partner brings to a search can be transformative in its results.
  2. Sometimes it is necessary to find areas of flexibility to recruit the right candidate long-term.

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