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Sourcing Matters

Sourcing Matters

By 3RNET Director of Education Mandi Gingras

If you tuned in to our November 1 Academy session on Marketing To and Finding Candidates, you will remember hearing, “Where you source matters, find what works for you.”

But you might be thinking, how do I know what’s really working? Or wondering if there’s anything you might be missing. Today I’ll share some insights that have helped me fine-tune my sourcing efforts over the years.  These tips can help you identify multiple strategies and sourcing channels, put your sourcing plan into motion, track your results and identify what’s working for you to attract candidates.

Start each search with an all-inclusive sourcing plan.

With each new search, I start a new sourcing plan. Using either a Word table or an Excel spreadsheet has worked well for me. I uncover as many strategies and channels as I can find and add them to my list of sources. I include sources I’ve used in the past, as well as potential sources I can consider using. For each strategy on your sourcing plan, include the contact information, website, pricing, and candidate reach. Once you have the list completed, you can decide on which strategies to start with that will meet your needs and give you the most impact.  Compiling a list also helps determine a realistic budget and allows you to plan out and focus your energy on resources that will fit into your fiscal budget. A sourcing plan is also a great way to quickly pull a report to share with your CEO, medical director, or hiring manager to keep them updated on your sourcing and marketing efforts.

Be sure to include sources for each of these recruitment categories in your sourcing plan:

  • Online job boards 
  • Candidate databases
  • Virtual and in-person career fairs
  • Training program outreach
  • Specialty advertising 
  • Email and direct mail campaigns
  • Recruitment events with state, regional, and national exposure
  • Professional Associations (national, regional, state, and student chapters)
  • Eligible State and Federal programs (PCO/PCA, HRSA, NACHC, National Council of Nonprofits)

You’ll also want to include strategies for identifying candidates through networking, employee referrals and pipeline programs on your sourcing plan.

Keep a list of recruitment firm and locum agency contacts should you decide you need outside assistance with your most difficult searches. Be sure to request non-profit discounts and keep good records of all pricing, contract terms and candidate referrals.

Discover new resources.

I like to do a Google search to help identify any new strategies that I might not be aware of, or when starting a new search for a specialty I’m not yet familiar with. Try a Google search on “job boards for (fill in any specialty)” or “jobs for (fill in specialty) in (fill in your state)” to find common places others are posting.  

You can do the same to locate training programs in your state and nationwide. If you’re searching for physicians in training, a couple of helpful sites to visit are www.Residencyprogramslist.com and www.MedResidency.com. You’ll want to locate the program coordinators and add their contact information to your sourcing plan. I recommend identifying and sorting the training programs located within your state, your surrounding states, your region and nationwide so you can easily create email campaigns based on your specific needs and target your communications to each audience. Utilize Handshake to identify and connect with virtual and in-person career fairs at universities nationwide.

While reviewing health professional resumes/CVs, pay attention to which memberships and professional associations they are affiliated with. This can be a great way to find new channels to post jobs or connect with on social media.

Reach out to recruitment industry organizations such as AAPPR for chat conversations on specific sourcing suggestions. If you don’t find any relevant conversation threads, post an inquiry to the chat group to see what recommendations you might receive.

Be sure to refer to the Academy Session 3 PowerPoint slides 45-47 for some additional ideas on where to source providers and other healthcare professionals, as well as diverse candidates. You can also find more tips on creating job postings, using social media, and other helpful sourcing strategies, so be sure to check out the recording if you missed it.

Stretch your budget dollars.

Identify free and low-cost strategies. Remember to ask all vendors if they offer a non-profit discount. Consider 1-3 month trials for strategies that have a higher price tag, and focus those efforts on your most in-demand or hardest-to-fill searches. Select a lower number of job slots with your subscriptions to keep costs down and rotate your job openings through those slots. Look for strategies that offer multiple benefits (ads that offer both print and digital reach, subscriptions that offer a job board and a candidate database, job boards that cross-post to other platforms, and recruiting events that provide pre- and post-lead lists).

Think creatively when looking at specialty advertising. Particularly if you’re in a rural area, look for advertising options in your community (local businesses, travel venues, school programs for music, art, and sporting events), and magazines/websites that target popular recreational activities in your area (golf, biking, mountain climbing, skiing, etc).

Track progress and results.

Be sure to include dates and terms for each strategy in your sourcing plan. This will help you track where you are actively sourcing at any given time, any subscriptions or job postings that might be expiring, and the frequency of your communications. 

Also, be sure to identify how each candidate you talk to was sourced and keep track of that information so you can measure your ROI. Keep in mind that not every source you use will have a measurable ROI, and this doesn’t mean they aren’t a worthwhile investment.  Many sources create valuable brand awareness and direct candidates to other channels where they may reach you, such as an advertisement that provides a link to your website. They may also pick up your contact information and call or email you directly.  Most candidates are using multiple channels to learn about job opportunities and they may not remember which one specifically they saw your ad through, but it’s always a good idea to ask for reporting purposes.

Consider using platforms like Constant Contact or MailChimp for your email campaigns so you can track results. These platforms provide data on open rates, click-throughs on any links you include in your content, the time of day your message was read, and even the type of device that was used. Information like this can be very valuable when planning your messaging and measuring your reach and effectiveness.  Email platforms can also help you manage unsubscribers so you can more easily follow anti-spam rules when sending mass emails.

Use these time-saving tips.

  • Set calendar reminders to help you stay on top of renewing or refreshing job posts and scheduling communication outreach with various targeted audiences.  
  • Create a job post template and a one-page flyer that you can easily edit content for each position and upload to job boards or email in your outreach efforts.  
  • Create email templates that you can quickly copy and paste when starting an email campaign or replying to candidate inquiries.
  • Add a column on your sourcing plan to keep account login and password information easily accessible.
  • Keep one master sourcing plan with separate sheets for each individual search.
  • Review your sourcing plan annually to measure your results and plan your strategies for the next fiscal year.

Remember these final thoughts.

The job market is very competitive, and it is a challenge to find candidates across all fields. You will find the most success in generating candidates if you apply multiple strategies and sourcing channels. There is no single magic source that will fill all your vacancy needs. 3RNET is an excellent source to have in your recruitment toolbox, but we shouldn’t be your only tool. Increase your results by casting a wide net and use a multi-pronged approach. Follow trends and network with your peers to identify new and innovative ways to reach candidates. 

Above all be strategic, think outside the box, stay on top of your efforts, and track your results, because where you source matters, and finding what works does too!