Physician Recruitment Goes Social

Best practices can attract many qualified candidates

By Michelle Seifert, Frank Gallagher, and Donna Ecclestone

In 2007, we joined forces to create Academic In-House Recruiters (AIR), a network that now includes more than 80 members at 50+ academic institutions across the United States. AIR now serves as the premier resource for in-house recruiters and physicians interested in academic and teaching environments, and is the first official chapter of the Association of Staff Physician Recruiters (ASPR).  Our mission is to educate academic leaders about marketing trends in academic recruitment.

In The 2020 Workplace: How Innovative Companies Attract, Develop, and Keep Tomorrow’s Employees, authors Jeanne Meister and Karie Willyerd predicted that most employment recruiting would begin on social networks. For many of us, it already does.

Here are some of our suggestions to help you maximize your social recruiting efforts and to keep the leading edge in today’s rapidly fluctuating medical marketplace:

Online recruiting is more than just a Facebook page. Be visible on multiple social networking sites, such as LinkedIn, and actively market your opportunities. Keep the pages updated, and provide clear links to your institutional website.

Back up social efforts with a complete and informative website. Numerous AIR-member institutions including Cleveland Clinic, Duke University, and Baystate Health have discovered the need to enhance their respective websites as a way to supplement their recruitment efforts. Make the site as rich and informative as possible, and include all of the information prospective employees might need in order to make a thoughtful decision, both for themselves and their families. You’re not only selling your institution, but your community as well.

Increase online visibility by sharing resources. One of the benefits of AIR membership is an ability to participate in the network’s applicant referral program. With an applicant’s permission, members regularly pass along the CVs of applicants to other institutions that may have a need in a particular specialty or that meet the applicant’s geographic preference.

Make it easy for candidates to apply to multiple institutions. There’s a reason why the universal application has become so popular in the world of undergraduate admissions: It makes it easier to apply to multiple schools at the same time. AIR uses this same concept by incorporating that same ease into the employment application process. Applicants can post their CVs on the AIR website, where they can be searched and viewed by recruiters at all AIR-member institutions.

Make it easy for candidates to apply to your institution. Baystate Health rolled out a new employment website about 18 months ago that allows the recruitment team to contact prospective applicants directly by sending them emails with links to recruiting opportunities, information about the community, and clinical practices information for each of its three hospitals. Applicants can apply online, and can even opt to receive a confirmation via text message to their smart phones. Cleveland Clinic’s physician recruitment website also allows applicants to apply online with the ability to view CVs instantly.

Join professional organizations such as AIR and ASPR. Just as it’s important for physicians to keep their education current, the same is true for in-house recruiters as well. Professional organizations, especially ASPR and AIR, serve as valuable resources on trends, best practices, benchmarking and professional development.

Michelle Seifert is Director of Physician Recruitment Main Campus Cleveland Clinic and Vice-President of AIR. She can be reached at seiferm@ccf.org.

 Frank Gallagher is Senior Physician Recruiter at Baystate Health and is President of AIR. He can be reached at Frank.gallagher@baystatehealth.org.

 Donna Ecclestone is Assistant Director of Integration/Onboarding for Duke’s faculty practice (Private Diagnostic Clinic) and helped lead the initiative to form AIR and served as AIR’s first President for 2 years. She can be reached at donna.ecclestone@duke.edu.

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