The job isn't done once you've successfully recruited an employed physician. Marketers and recruiters must work to keep physicians content and productive, especially in that first year of employment.
If a physician has relocated their family to take a position at your organization, it's important to touch base with their spouse and children.
"The physician may be ecstatic with the practice and the way things are going, but if the family is not happy then the recruit will not be successful," says Patricia Ball, EdD, senior vice president of strategic development and public affairs at LHP Hospital Group in Plano, TX. "It is very expensive to recruit a physician and then not be able to retain the physician because the family is not happy. We try to understand any particular interest of the spouse and children and make certain that they meet people with similar interests."
Ball and her team also conduct a focus group with all the newly recruited physicians after their first year to get a sense of what they are happy with and what they would like changed. "This ensures that our program is always improving," she says. "During the year we have our liaisons checking to see how things are going with the physician."
Keeping open channels of communications of physicians is also crucial, both when recruiting physicians and helping them build their practice.
"It is vital that you have regular meetings which need to be more frequent in the beginning and at least once a month later on to monitor the development of the practice and the satisfaction of the physician and the family," Ball says.
By highlighting your organization's attributes that appeal to employed physicians and then helping them build a thriving practice and get involved in the community, hospital marketers and recruiters will be able to better position their organization in today's changing physician recruitment environment.