It is no secret that it is becoming more and more challenging to staff healthcare providers such as RN’s, NP’s, Physicians and more. So I have compiled a few tips that have helped hiring managers over the years. The following tips are designed to help hiring managers maximize their results when utilizing a recruiter:
In recruitment process enhancement, it is important to follow a flow. This ‘flow’, or timing of the steps involved, will dramatically increase the chances that the hiring manager’s offer will be accepted.
The following 10 tips come from over 1,000 placements over the past 11 years. None of them are groundbreaking. However, collectively they will build a formidable brand in the efforts to hire the best talent for any healthcare organization:
1. Initial Setup of the Job Details
Have a clear idea of what is needed in a successful candidate. It should be in writing and utilized in addition to a standard job description. Job descriptions are very useful for their specific purpose, describing the position. However, they are not sufficient for attracting the best candidates (selling the position) or identifying the best candidate for the position.
- Does the successful candidate need to be more of an extrovert with exceptional rapport building skills or someone who is more process and task-oriented?
- Is the position better for someone who enjoys a culture of constant change or a more stable work environment?
2. Adjustments along the way
The hiring manager should always inform the recruiter of any changes in the initial offering so that they are not sharing inaccurate information about the opportunity. Avoid changing the offering, unless it is for the better from the candidate’s perspective.
Salary range – Changes in salary are common, especially if the initial offering is not attracting the right candidates for the job. However, it looks very disorganized when the recruiter gives the candidate a salary range, only to be told a number outside of that range by the hiring manager, whether on the interview or when the offer is received.
3. Response Time
Another important aspect of recruitment process enhancement is that the hiring manager should supply an initial response to the recruiter for candidate submissions within 1-3 business days, and the recruiter should relay this information within a relatively short period of time. The top candidates like feedback quickly. If it is not provided, they generally will assume the interest level is low, and will mentally start to filter out the opportunity in order to protect themselves from feeling rejected if the hiring manager isn’t interested.
Also, the hiring manager should supply interview feedback to the recruiter within 24 hours after the interview. The same principle applies as above.
The hiring manager can leverage the recruiter to find out what compensation package the candidate will accept before making an offer. The recruiter should also be able to provide the candidate’s current compensation as well. Knowing this will help gauge the probability of the offer being accepted, depending on how close or far apart the potential employer is from meeting the candidate’s expectations.
5. Job Offer Stage
The hiring manager should be prepared to make an offer within 2 days of the final interview. If it will take longer, inform the recruiter so that the right expectations are set. Otherwise the candidate will grow colder on the opportunity and may start ruling it out mentally in order to avoid disappointment in the event that the offer is not made.
Next 5 Tips
The next 5 recruitment process enhancement tips will help healthcare organizations build their employment brand and offer an outstanding experience among potential applicants. This is because most companies will fail to do some or all of the following on a consistent basis.
6. Think of applicants as people, not a number
This is the most important tip and crucial to recruitment process enhancement, because recruiting markets ebb and flow. Remember that applicants are potential customers/patients or influencers for the organization, so it matters what they think of the organization after their application experience. Let this thinking influence every encounter with applicants.
Make it easy for successful (top) talent to apply
It is suggested for the hiring manager or recruiter to apply on the site in order to answer the following questions:
- Did it take more than 5 minutes? The longer it takes, the more likely that top candidates will prematurely quit the application process.
- Did it take more than 3 steps to complete? The process shouldn’t involve more than the candidate sharing basic information, uploading resume/cover, and answer 1-5 quick qualifying questions.
- Is there a process in place to follow up with candidates within 1-3 business days of applying? If not, top candidates will lose interest quickly.
7. Answer/respond to applicants in a timely fashion
Timeliness is based on the candidate’s expectation, however 1 business day is generally acceptable. Strive to never allow applicants to sit in the inbox or applicant tracking system for several days, or even weeks, just because the position is on hold. Show consideration for the candidate and the overall recruitment process by updating the applicants on the latest status of the requisition (mass emails may be used for this). The same goes for those who interview as well.
8. Have a phone number available and answer the phone
If no one is available to answer, return the phone call within 1 business day. Notice that most competitor’s postings don’t have phone numbers, and only a small percentage will actually answer the phone!
9. Promptly remove or close requisitions that are filled or cancelled
Nothing is more frustrating to an applicant than to take the time to read, analyze and apply for a position, only to find out that it has been filled or closed. It can happen to any organization. However, try to prevent this experience from happening, and apologize when it does happen. This includes internal postings as well as external postings.
10. Show graciousness to those apply
Endeavor to thank everyone who applies, because even if they don’t qualify, they may in the future. In addition, someone who isn’t a fit now, may be highly sought after later as they progress in their career. Let unqualified candidates know right away, don’t wait until the job is closed.
Of course this doesn’t cover everything, however it can go a long way in helping acquire top talent. Actions, or behavior on the part of the hiring manager and recruiter, will reflect negatively or positively on the branding of the healthcare organization to the applicant, as well as anyone in their network of contacts. So it is important to make each interaction with an applicant a great one!
If these simple recommendations are followed, it will build a positive employment brand in the marketplace. As stated previously, some applicants that are not hired today, may be the applicants heavily recruited later. They will gain more valuable experience and/or education as the years go by. These applicants will have a long memory, so how they are treated today will make a huge difference in how they respond the brand in the future.