For the average Dr. Jones, starting a job search can seem like a monumental undertaking. Regardless of whether you are fresh out of medical training, looking to expand your clinical responsibilities, or hoping to cut back on practice hours, making the most of your job search can seem like a hit or miss. To become more effective, you’ll need to hash out the details of your dream job, manage your personal and professional commitments, and highlight your unique skills and knowledge base in your chosen field.
Using job boards might be an easy way to reach your job search goals. Read on to figure out if you should give them a second look.
Job boards have a wider variety of job opportunities
Job boards are known for their diversity. It’s the cheap(est) option for hospitals, large multispecialty groups, and other employers to advertise the jobs they most need to be filled. With the physician shortage expected to top 120,000 in a decade, these employers are eager to get their positions filled, and they will aggressively advertise on job boards. If you don’t have access to these and you are actively looking for a new opportunity, then you are shortchanging your search and denying yourself access to a stream of ideal opportunities.
Some smaller practices may not have the overhead to afford recruiters, meaning that you will never see the opportunities if you don’t peruse the job boards. Alternatively, some employers may feel that they don’t need to spend money on recruiters because they are casting a wide net or have highly desirable characteristics such as a prime locale or a handsome recruitment package. As such, they may choose not to use recruiters, leaving you out of luck if you don’t get familiar with job boards. Finally, some recruiters only work with specific hospitals or hospital systems, and so they won’t have access to the breadth of opportunities in your field.
Job boards have no hidden agendas
Job boards are the great equalizer, ensuring that all candidates start on an even playing field; candidates stand out only based on their professional merits. When you outsource your job search, you may be unaware of hidden fees or agendas associated with a “middle-man.” Recruiters may not offer you specific jobs because they feel that they are not the right fit for you, which may or may not be correct in your circumstance.
Additionally, when you work with a recruiter, you may be at a slight disadvantage. Although recruiting firms work hard to place you, they come with a hefty price tag for employers. Often when a recruiter fills a job, the employer has to pay recruitment placement fees that can total more than $30,000 K per physician.
Of course, this does mean that recruiters are very motivated to get the job filled. Still, employers will compare the recruited physician to a potential employee who comes without any additional fees via the job board. As such, when it comes down to equally strong candidates, a physician applying through a job board often will have the upper hand.
Alternatively, the physician who gets hired via the recruiter may see some of his/her earning potential decrease to cover the recruitment fees. This may mean a diminished (or even absent) signing bonus or other perks of the job.
You’ll stay in the driver’s seat
When you choose job boards, you maintain control of your job search. You know which opportunities you present to and which employers have your resume and contact information. If you are keen on managing each part of the application process and have the time and organization to do so, this is crucial for an optimal experience. When you rely on a recruiter or otherwise outsource your job search, you are dependent on someone else (for better or worse) on driving your progress forward. With job boards, there is no middle-man— you can contact the hiring manager, set up interview and progress at your pace. If this is appealing to your application style, then job boards may be the better choice for you.
Guiding the process can be especially important if you have certain restrictions, such as location, that would make it more challenging for a recruiter to deliver the breadth of options that are specific to your need. For example, if you know you can only work in a particular town or region, job boards are for you, as you will find the lion’s share of local opportunities, while a recruiter may have access to only a small sampling.
You’ll show future employers your drive and commitment
Employers know that potential employees presented via recruiters are encouraged to apply to opportunities hand-picked by the recruitment firm that may be a good— but not perfect fit— for the candidate. “Enthusiastic” applicants who sign up with multiple recruiters may even be presented numerous times, indicating that they are not sufficiently involved or aware of the range of positions to which they are applying.
On the other hand, when you apply to a job via a job board, you show that you’ve put some thought and commitment into choosing it. Additionally, you will be able to tailor your CV and cover letter to that position, showcasing your sincere desire to pursue and accept the job. As some recruited applicants who only review the opportunity after being presented may not follow through, this gives the employer more security that you genuinely want the job.
Physician recruiters can be invaluable allies in your job search, as I’ve discussed here. Moreover, they provide an ideal pathway for many physicians, especially those who have unique circumstances like gaps in clinical practice or who require specific practice settings. On the other hand, job boards are ideal for active job seekers who want to keep in control of their search and are focused on a specific region or city.
Job boards are a great resource that you can’t afford to miss. Have you given them a fair chance?