5 Top Strategies for Recruiting Physicians and APCs

Recruiting physicians and advanced practice clinicians has emerged as a top stressor for healthcare organizations, a challenge made worse by the pandemic. But the shrinking provider pipeline was a problem long before COVID because of burnout, an aging physician workforce and greater healthcare demand from an older, sicker patient population.

Provider Solutions & Development (PS&D)’s Chief Executive Rachelle Daugherty recently discussed 5 key recruiting strategies during a featured session at Becker’s Healthcare Human Resources + Talent Virtual Summit. PS&D, which recruits for its founding organization (Providence) and more than 25 other health systems nationwide, was a sponsor for the event.

The 5 strategies Ms. Daugherty recommends to healthcare leaders are:

  1. Recruit for a diverse workforce. Many organizations' recruitment strategies are not designed to attract clinicians who are representative of the communities those organizations serve. This is in part because of implicit bias in recruitment, which deepens existing disparities in the makeup of the healthcare workforce and health outcomes among diverse populations. Ms. Daugherty encourages healthcare leaders to:
  • Commit to diversity, equity and inclusion (DEI) for internal and external recruitment practices.
  • Work with hiring managers to ensure the provider culture is welcoming to candidates from diverse backgrounds.
  • Source from and post to job boards that serve diverse groups.
  • Be present at events that support diverse communities.
  1. Plan for millennial providers. Millennials, who represent 35% of the U.S. labor force, have specific traits, habits, work preferences and expectations. Recruiters and healthcare leaders can calibrate their efforts to attract and appeal to this generation by: 
  • Researching millennial work styles, needs and wants.
  • Exploring ways to accommodate different work preferences (e.g., hybrid and part-time schedules) as well as compensation preferences (e.g., panel-based or salary models versus relative value unit-based models). 
  • Being intentional in personalizing outreach strategies targeted to millennial candidates. "A generic email will not do," Ms. Daugherty said.
  1. Connect with residency programs. Residency programs are often targeted for general recruitment, yet residents have specific needs that can be best met when organizations customize outreach and engage with an eye toward retaining residents after their program. 

"You've got to devise strategies unique to the type of resident and fellow who will thrive in [your] practice once they're post training," Ms. Daugherty said. This requires that organizations learn about where they are drawing their current pipelines from and build long-term relationships with the programs that best match their needs.

  1. Monitor and adapt to industry and practice trends. Beyond a shrinking pipeline and evolving trends in lifestyle and practice settings, market disrupters such as Walmart and Amazon are putting pressure on organizations to innovate. To succeed, healthcare players must constantly scan where the market is headed and create strategies optimized for emerging markets and clinician preferences, as well as anticipate and quickly adapt to shifts.
  1. Invest in scalable recruitment operations infrastructure. Organizations looking to strengthen their recruitment need to expand their reach. Sourcing scalable technology and marketing and building a recruitment operations infrastructure that enables their staff to work at scale can go a long way toward achieving that goal. Meanwhile, Ms. Daugherty said investing in an improved digital experience can widen, deepen and broaden marketing reach. 

"Finding a good provider recruiter is almost as hard as finding a good provider, so having the tools for them to be successful is huge," Ms. Daugherty said.

Watch Ms. Daugherty’s full featured session from our HR + Talent Virtual Summit on demand.

Learn more about Becker's virtual events.


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