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Journal of ASPR - Summer 2013 - Why physician recruiters should think more like marketers
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Why physician recruiters should think more like marketers

By Melissa Byington, President, CompHealth Locum Tenens

CompHealthThe competition you face to attract the most talented physicians is intense, so it’s worth evaluating your recruitment strategy to see how you can gain competitive advantage. Don’t overlook the power of marketing to give you that edge. The most effective campaigns use an integrated, mixed-method approach that takes into account how tech-savvy candidates search and apply for jobs today.

In this social world, physicians expect to engage with your brand on a variety of devices and channels. Yes, I said “your brand.” In this competitive market, you need to differentiate your opportunity from the many, many others out there, and beyond just offering a lucrative compensation package.

One of the benefits of partnering with a comprehensive staffing company like CompHealth is that you can take advantage of our in-house marketing department to promote your open jobs. But there’s also no reason why you can’t do it yourself—the key is to approach it like a marketer would.

Really understand your target market
The more you know about how your target market thinks, the stronger you will become in influencing them to want to work for your facility. As you network with physicians, do a little research to find out:

What do physicians want in a job today? It’s rarely just about money. Consider work values such as good relationships with staff and colleagues, control over time off, adequate material resources, and autonomy in decision making.

What do they care about, career-wise and in general? What are the personal and professional goals of the physicians you talk to, and how might that translate to the candidates you’re trying to attract?

What do they dislike about practicing medicine? Pay attention to changing attitudes about practicing medicine in today’s health system. Understanding this will help you know how to better position your jobs.

Features tell, benefits sell
How should physician candidates view your opportunity based on what’s important to them? Emphasize particulars of the job that you think they will find most attractive. Make a list of differentiators, including intangible benefits offered both inside and outside the workplace. This will help you determine your unique value proposition. Examples are:

  • Work-life balance
  • Employee culture
  • The ability to make a difference
  • Quality of life/cost of living
  • Community amenities
  • Recreational opportunities

To illustrate how this can affect employment branding, consider what we’ve been able to achieve at CompHealth. As a division of CHG Healthcare Services, we are ranked in the top 3 on Fortune’s list of 100 Best Companies to Work For in America, which has given us a competitive advantage in our hiring efforts. One of the factors that led to our inclusion on this list is the praise that our people give to our people-centric culture and benefits program.

Ensure you reach your audience
You see that we live in a technology-driven world that is constantly changing the way people seek out information and communicate. This is why digital and social marketing need to take center stage in your recruitment plan.

Online job boards—There’s no one best job board for all physician specialties, so it’s better to target a mix of sites. Your focus should be to write compelling, searchable headlines. They need to capture the attention of physicians and also contain relevant information for search engines; otherwise, your job posting likely won’t even show up on a results page.

Social media—Social sites can be excellent channels for recruiting, particularly younger physicians. Medscape’s 2012 Physician Lifestyle Report shows that only 8 percent of physicians under 30 do not use social media. Keep in mind that you’re now dealing with passive candidates, so always establish relationships before trying to discuss job opportunities, or risk turning them off completely.

Additionally, don’t underestimate the value of offline marketing to round out your media mix. Traditional tactics such as print advertising and direct mail are still incredibly effective in reaching a targeted audience.

For expert insight into how to start marketing your jobs right away, including real-world perspective from physicians, attend the ASPR session, “Think like a marketer to capture top talent,” presented by Leslie Snavely, CHG’s Vice President of Marketing. Afterwards, stop by Booth #314 to find out how CompHealth can complement your recruiting efforts. To get started today, call 800.453.3030 or visit

Journal of ASPR - Summer 2013

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