5 Insider Secrets for Landing a Clinical Job
At Nomad, our greatest and most fulfilling moments are when we’ve helped a clinician find the perfect job for them, and when we’ve connected a medical facility to a clinician that they critically need. Over the past year, our team has been fortunate in being able to directly match thousands of clinicians to employers, and we’ve noticed a few patterns among the clinicians that are able to successfully land jobs.
These factors hint to a number of simple ways that doctors and nurses can optimize their chances of beating their competition to land the job they’re after. Interestingly, they have less to do with how a clinician performed during an interview, but rather what tactics were used to land the interview and start the conversation in the first place.
Without further ado, here are five secrets, or rather trend-based tips, we’d strongly recommend for any doctor or nurse looking to optimize their job search and increase their chances in getting that perfect clinical job:
CVs Must Be Updated Within the Past Month
Many CVs and resumes that come to employers are poorly crafted and sometimes immediately disqualifying. Often, they’re missing up-to-date details on work history and certifications, or they include unnecessary personal information. A concise and complete CV helps shorten review time, and healthcare facilities appreciate that. Additionally, simple adjustments, such as consistent font sizes and types throughout create visual organization, which makes it much easier for recruiters to hone in on what’s most important.
Upload a Professional Headshot (Not an iPhone Photo)
Catch the eye of employers by uploading a professional headshot to your online job board profiles. A polished online profile and professionally-taken photo helps you stand out from the pack and helps to humanize you in a sea of candidates. This is only natural. Who wouldn’t want to explore the few clinicians who took the time to upload photos, and thus seem more personable and engaged with the hiring process?
Always Respond Within 24 Hours
The early bird catches the worm. When searching for candidates, employers are always actively speaking with multiple qualified individuals, so the ones who are most responsive often get the most attention. Try your best to respond to messages promptly, and ideally within 24 hours. A high level of engagement signals that you are enthusiastic about an opportunity, which is what employers want to see in the person they hire.
Negotiate Your Salary with Industry Benchmarks in Hand
You have the power to negotiate your own salary, and that’s an opportunity to earn premium pay. Most terms within your contract are negotiable. If you like a job opportunity but it pays too little for it to make sense for you, chances are you can get a higher pay rate. All you need to do is ask! To help your cause, you should consider using industry average pay rates to support your requests; for example for doctors, you can review Medscape’s 2017 Physician Compensation Report or order provider compensation data from MGMA.
Only Go After What Makes Sense
There are a lot of clinical jobs out there, so it’s important to know exactly what you’re looking for. Spend some time thinking deeply about what environment you want to work in: Which states, which cities, which clinical settings, and which patient populations are best for you? Consider when and how long you want to work: Is a weekend now and then, or a month straight better for you? Determine how much you want to get paid. And finally, really understand why you’re doing a freelance clinical job or travel nursing. Is it to make a little extra money so you can pay down your student debt and buy a house? Or, are you looking for an adventure in another state or care setting? Come up with honest answers to these questions, and you will have better conversations with the people trying to hire you; a smoother and shorter search; and, best of all, a job you really like.
In a post-recruiter world, the power is in your hands. And with a little data, modern technology, plus best practices in hand, you will be the best agent you ever had.
Now, go forth and search!
Alexi Nazem, MD
Co-founder and CEO of Nomad Health