Recruiting complexities require more tools for attraction and retention

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While meeting with a client in the rural Southwest, we discussed the challenges of recruiting and how the landscape of competition has changed for them in recent years. In order to acquire a new physician, the hospital now conducts a two-year global search. In years past, filling a position only took a fraction of that time, and they did not have to search so far and wide for the right candidate. 

 

The hospital’s CEO suggested that it’s never been more important for them to have a diverse set of tools for attracting candidates, not only due to increased competition, but also because of regional recruitment trends. Candidates from the Northeast and the West Coast are more likely to be seeking employment, whereas candidates from the Midwest want to practice as independent contractors. When recruiting on a national scale, it’s safe to say that hospitals need to be prepared to offer different types of employment arrangements.

 

Of course, the same set of tools that aids in recruitment also helps improve retention, which is equally as important, particularly at a rural facility where keeping just one physician can have a positive impact on the bottom line and the continuity of care in the community.

 

Our programs can support hospitals in their efforts to recruit and retain physician talent. For example, our Physicians’ Advantage Plan maximizes the value of hospital-based compensation by providing a way for physicians and/or practice groups to defer current income taxes and accumulate wealth on a pre-tax basis. Like most people in high marginal tax brackets, physicians are interested in sheltering current income from state and federal taxes beyond the limits and restrictions of 401(k) and pension plans. However, they typically don’t have an opportunity to do so. Through this program, a hospital can give physicians an advantage they cannot easily obtain for themselves. This sends a message about how much the hospital values its doctors, making it a powerful tool in recruitment and retention. 

 

Our Physician Employment Strategies also transforms employed physician compensation into a tool for recruitment and retention. This program uses a combination of short-term and long-term rewards to build a more balanced and dynamic rewards suite. Through this program, a hospital can reward loyalty and encourage physicians to remain at its organization by linking a portion of their compensation to at-risk, long-term rewards. It can also use guaranteed, short-term bonuses to attract new candidates. The best thing about the program is that it’s highly customizable, enabling our clients to focus on their priorities and reward what matters most to them.

 

As hospitals compete for physician talent, it’s important for them to seek out creative compensation solutions that attract physicians while supporting organizational goals. Traditional compensation strategies that might have been sufficient a short time ago are no longer effective in today’s environment. But the good news is, there are ways to distinguish yourself in the marketplace without compromising your financial wellbeing. 

 

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