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Therapy and Allied Health Recruiting & Retention [BEST PRACTICES]

by Patricia O. Urquiaga | Nov 10, 2021 | allied health, allied health professionals, best practices, healthcare best practices, healthcare candidates, healthcare recruiting, healthcare staffing, physician recruiter, physician recruiting, qualified candidates, recruiting, recruiting strategies, retention, retention strategies, therapists, therapy, therapy and allied health candidates, therapy and allied health professionals
Therapy and Allied Health Recruiting & Retention [BEST PRACTICES]

The key to growing your practice and keeping patients happy is to have the right team. That is why therapy and allied health recruiting and retention is key.

However, as we know, healthcare recruiting and retention is an area where many practices tend to struggle.

Some organizations have their own recruiting teams but undergo many challenges when it comes to finding qualified candidates in a decent amount of time. On the other hand, some organizations outsource all recruiting to physician recruiting firms to help with staffing needs.

One thing to keep in mind, is that no matter what your situation is, it’s important to analyze the recruiting process you have in place to see what works, and what doesn’t.

First let’s start by exploring what you can do as an organization to improve your existing therapy and allied health recruiting and retention process:

recruiting and retention process

Ways To Improve Your Existing Recruiting and Retention Process

Create Job Descriptions for Every Position: This is a must! Every organization should create enticing job descriptions for every position. The messaging here is key – so, summarize the position, list key responsibilities, highlight what you offer and state why candidates should apply. Make sure that after you create these job descriptions that you keep them current and modify them accordingly. These job descriptions work great when posting jobs on hiring sites, but you can also use them in offer letters, onboarding materials, compliance documents and so much more.

Streamline Your Therapy and Allied Health Recruiting Process: If you’re looking to hire a clinician (in this case, a therapist or allied health professional), just making a job post isn’t going to get the job done. You need to have a proactive approach regarding your search strategies to reach out to all the potentially suitable clinicians that exist. Here is what the “ideal approach” looks like according to Julius Holt, Physician Recruiter for MASC Medical:

  • Have an open mind
  • Understand the recruitment process takes time
  • Identify opportunities to source candidates
  • Source candidates
  • Make the interview process, short and proactive. For example: conduct a phone/video call, in-person meeting (optional, depending on position), work/shadow day, and decide on candidate. Other items to keep top of mind include:
  1. Involve related departments
  2. Prepare and make staff part of the interview process
  3. Don’t be afraid to screen out applicants. It’s best to interview a few good candidates vs. every applicant. For candidates that don’t make the cut, politely let them know in a timely matter via a simple phone call or email.
  4. Keep top candidates that were not hired around until you know the new hire works out. Simply let them know you’ll get back to them with a final decision within a few weeks.
  • Offer unique qualities to clinicians that competitors don’t. This can include:
  1. Above market rate compensation
  2. Growth opportunities
  3. Partnership/ownership etc.
  • Remember quality patient care is key. Physicians want to work for a practice that values quality patient care vs. high volume of patients.

Monitor New Hire Experiences to Measure Success and Retain New Hires: Once your new hire is onboard, take the time to regularly check in with them. Continue to coach them and give them the support they need. This is huge when trying to retain candidates. If you are an employer show them you care and walk alongside their journey, they will likely stay long-term. Ask them for feedback about your organization in general. Additionally, here are some other questions you can ask:

  • How is everything going so far?
  • Are you facing any challenges?
  • Is there anything unclear about your role?
  • Do you have all the tools you need to accomplish your work?
  • How was the entire recruitment process (what worked best, what could be improved upon, what would they add/change etc.)
  • What would help you do your job better?

After 30 days, ask your new hire for a testimonial. Positive testimonials mean your staff is happy with their jobs – and this is one way to easily attract other great talent to your organization.

Recruiting therapy and allied health professionals

Opportunities To Source Therapy and Allied Health Professionals

Website: Leverage your website! Many times, organizations get so caught up with online job postings that they forget to link their very own website. Remember your website allows potential candidates to immerse themselves on who you are, your mission, vision, services, etc. Most important, it gives them a sense of your culture and what to expect if they take on the opportunity. So add a website link to your online job posts and make sure to leverage your careers page. If you don’t have a careers page, consider developing one to allow candidates to browse through all open positions by title, location and/or status (full or part-time). If your website also has a blog and resources page, this type of information is great for potential candidates to see. Not only does it give you credibility, but it also makes you an industry thought leader.

Hiring Sites: Hiring sites likes Indeed, Glassdoor and LinkedIn are great opportunities to source qualified candidates. However, creating job posts for each site and for every open position available, can become time consuming. Instead, be proactive. Track the last couple of successful hires and ask yourself these questions: Which site did they apply from? Interviews with the best results came from which site? Once you have this information, you can strategically create and post jobs on the sites that give you the best results.

Email Marketing: As a rule of thumb, don’t wait to recruit new candidates only when there is a need. Establish an ongoing email marketing campaign where you can promote your organization, connect with candidates daily while letting them know what jobs you have available. For this email marketing list, it is ok to include both active and passive candidates. Most of the time passive candidates are open to new opportunities if the right employer, compensation, and benefits show up.

Internal Advertising: Most employers focus on recruiting from the outside vs. recruiting from within. Primarily, they do this because if they hire someone from the outside, that candidate is likely to already be doing the job somewhere else. Therefore, training might not necessary. However, employers need to remember that internal candidates are an important source (group of people) to fill vacancies. If you have someone in mind, give them the opportunity. Many times, healthcare professionals are looking for organizations that provide room for growth – and this is one way to attract and retain them. So, the next time you have a job opening, don’t forget to promote the job within.

Referral Program: Did you know that approximately 48% of new hires come through employee referrals? According to LinkedIn, this is a popular channel for recruiting. If your practice isn’t tapping into your employees’ networks for referrals, it’s time too. Create a referral bonus structure, where both the referrer and referral get paid after 6 months or so after the person is hired. Many times, referrers look after the person they’ve referred and help with onboarding and training because they don’t want their reputation jeopardized. So why not leverage this?

Physician Recruiters: Finding the right physician recruiter can be a challenge. However, there are many benefits to partnering with one. One, they can alleviate your practice from the staffing challenges and gaps faced. Two, they have extensive knowledge, experience, and professional network plus so much more. Before going this route, make sure to determine if it’s the right time to hire a physician recruiter for your organization. If it is, do your research, reach out and schedule a meeting to learn more about them. Here are some questions you can ask your potential physician recruiter during your meeting to see if they are the right fit for you.

As you can see, there are endless ways to source candidates. In addition to the above, your practice can also:

  • Consider contractors as potential hires
  • Recruit via professional organizations
  • Conduct job fairs
  • Promote via social media
  • Partner with schools/universities
  • Create a “former employee program” where you can reach out and try to re-hire former employees

Now let’s shift focus to learn what types of recruitment and retention strategies industry leading organizations have in place to be successful.

healthcare benefits and retention strategies

Therapy and Allied Health Recruiting & Retention [BEST PRACTICES]

Therapy and Allied Health Recruiting Strategies: When recruiting, most leading organizations highlight who their organization is, the type of candidate they are looking for, why candidates should apply, and information about the region/community. In addition, they put a huge spotlight on the benefits that come with the opportunity. Benefits vary depending on the employer, but can include any of the following:

  • Competitive compensation
  • Travel related expenses covered
  • A-rated medical malpractice insurance
  • Sign-on bonuses
  • Remote work programs
  • Health insurance
  • 401k plan
  • Continuing education credits
  • Tuition reimbursement
  • Flexible schedule (to accommodate work/life balance)
  • Paid time off (i.e., vacation, holidays, sick time, CME etc.)
  • License reimbursement
  • Relocation stipend and more

Therapy and Allied Health Retention Strategies: Medical organizations invest heavily on recruiting candidates. After a candidate is hired, leading organizations do everything in their power to retain that candidate because onboarding costs can range anywhere between $200,000 to $300,000. Here are some things they do to retain new hires:

  • Accommodate flexible scheduling
  • Re-recruit by conducting:
  1. Monthly meetings with all employees
  2. 30–90-day one-on-one with new hires to validate decision to come on board, ask about interview process and employee experience, gather thoughts/ideas on recruiting etc.
  • Create a sense of belonging
  • Offer mentoring programs
  • Offer career development opportunities
  • Address burnout and give physicians autonomy to practice
  • Employee recognition (i.e., thank you cards, promotion, annual performance appraisals etc.)
  • Celebrate overall staff accomplishments and more

Lastly, as a physician recruiter ourselves, we’ve collected some of the most frequently asked questions when it comes to therapy and allied health recruiting and retention.

We hope that these questions give you some insights into how we work and what candidates and employers are thinking.

therapy and allied health frequently asked questions

Frequently Asked Questions

How do I recruit therapists?

There are endless ways to find and recruit quality therapists and healthcare candidates in general. Revisit our “opportunities to source therapy and allied health professionals” section above for more information.

How much does your service cost?

Our cost varies depending on the type of therapist and allied health clinician our client needs and the practice location. Keep in mind, MASC Medical does offer risk-free consultations upfront to discuss physician staffing needs – in which we also discuss our cost in greater detail with the client. *This might not be the case for other physician recruiters.

What are the benefits of partnering with a healthcare recruiter like MASC Medical?

The following are three of the many reasons to partner with MASC Medical:

  • We have extensive healthcare industry knowledge
  • We are well-connected within a relationship-based physician network
  • We employ a streamlined, efficient process that is based on time-tested, proven strategies

For a complete list of benefits and to learn about the experiences of some of our satisfied clients, download our 6 reasons to partner with MASC Medical one pager.

What are some of the benefits employers offer candidates?

Benefits vary depending on the employer. However, most do offer competitive pay, health insurance, 401K plan, license reimbursement, continuing education credits, travel, and housing allowances and more.

How long does it take to find a therapist and/or allied health professional?

It takes approximately 30 days to successfully fill open positions. However, this may change depending on the role and requirements from clients.

How do you find therapists and allied health professionals and what is your process?

As a top physician recruiter, we source, screen, and pre-qualify potential candidates based on criteria that is unique to the needs of our clients. We take pride in our medical recruitment process that continues to evolve as our clients’ needs change. To learn more about our risk-free path, visit our how it works page.

How long does it take to find a therapist or allied health professional a job?

It takes approximately 30+/- days to find a therapist or allied health professional a job. The first step is to connect with a MASC Medical physician recruiter that will get to know you, your needs, and your personal goals. Thereafter, our team of experts will get to work and begin screening opportunities to find the best position for you. It’s important to know that timing does vary depending on the role these therapist and allied health professionals are looking for, location, type of practice, type of contract, practice setting, benefits etc. MASC Medical also plays an active role in the interview process, contract negotiation and more. We are here to support you every step of the way.

What type of therapist and allied health jobs are available?

Both therapists and allied health professionals can choose from short-term, long-term, and temporary jobs. Jobs range from:

  • Social Worker
  • Respiratory Therapist
  • Occupational Therapist
  • Physical Therapist
  • Speech Language Pathologist
  • Psychologist
  • Psychiatrists and more

Where do therapists and allied health professionals work?

Therapists and allied health professionals work in various setting such as schools, hospitals, nursing homes, outpatient clinics, home health setting and other similar facilities.

If you are a healthcare facility looking for qualified therapists or a candidate looking therapy or allied health jobs, learn how MASC Medical can help.

Sources: AMRPA, Practice Promotions

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