As you’re most likely experiencing, recruiting for mental and behavioral health is no easy task these days. In this blog post, we’ll explore what issues you may encounter – and how to get past these challenges to recruit quality candidates.
Challenges in Recruiting
Many recent graduates in the healthcare field have high salary expectations and anticipate earning a significant amount of money right after graduation. However, due to reimbursement changes and lower clinic revenue, clinics find it difficult to meet these salary expectations and provide competitive compensation packages.
Job-seekers have an advantage in the current labor market because there are more jobs available than there are people to fill them. In addition, providers have found that many candidates are only willing to work part-time, so they must hire more people to cover the same number of hours. Combine that with the ever-growing labor shortage, and there simply aren’t enough people to fill the positions.
How to Compete in a Market that Favors Job Seekers
Offer Competitive Compensation Packages
- Providing a competitive salary and benefits package is crucial to attract and retain talented therapists.
- Conduct market research to align your offerings with the average compensation in your area.
- Consider incentives like sign-on bonuses or relocation assistance to make your job offers more enticing.
- Being transparent about the expected salary establishes trust with job seekers and allows for negotiations.
- Including a reasonable salary range can help filter out candidates who may not be willing to accept your offer, saving time in the hiring process.
Be Honest About the Job
It’s important to be transparent about the obstacles your new hire will encounter. This will foster a stronger relationship and a more fulfilling work experience.
Provide Professional Development Opportunities
Offering professional growth opportunities attracts therapists eager to enhance their skills and advance their careers, especially recent graduates with a strong desire to expand their knowledge.
Foster a Positive Work Environment
To attract therapists, create a supportive work environment with engagement initiatives like mentorship, team-building, and recognition programs. This will increase employee satisfaction and retention rates, benefiting both you and your clients.
Emphasize Work-Life Balance
Recognizing the importance of work-life balance is key in appealing to job-seekers. Employers can offer flexible work schedules, remote work options, or alternative work arrangements to accommodate therapists’ personal needs and promote a healthy work-life balance. This can be particularly attractive to candidates who prioritize a strong work-life integration.
Highlight Client Outcomes and Impact
Employers can showcase therapists’ positive impact by sharing success stories and client outcomes, appealing to job-seekers passionate about delivering high-quality care and tangible results. It assures them they’ll work for someone who genuinely cares and wants to help people.
Streamline the Hiring Process
Simplifying the hiring process is crucial in a competitive market. Extensive application procedures can discourage qualified candidates. Employers must ensure a user-friendly process with clear instructions and efficient communication. Promptly responding to inquiries and keeping candidates updated exhibits professionalism and respect. It’s a delicate balance – you don’t want just anyone to secure an interview – but it’s a strategy that will benefit you.
Use the Right Technology
Hiring a candidate is great, but it’s keeping them that can be the problem. Between training, onboarding, and the rigors of their job, it can be a rocky boat. It’s not uncommon for people to feel like they’re thrown right in without enough training and onboarding, leading them to leave because they feel they can’t get a handle on the job. Fortunately, training and onboarding don’t have to be entirely on you. For example. TheraNest offers an hour-long “A Day in the Life of a Therapist” training to help new recruits learn to use TheraNest.
Furthermore, many clinicians become disillusioned with the profession when they realize how much time they spend on administrative tasks and documentation instead of helping clients. Even for admin staff, there often aren’t enough hours in the day. Having the right technology, workflows, and processes in place will help make the recruits feel comfortable because they’re accepting a job at a practice that understands the importance of simplifying administrative tasks. By reducing their administrative burden, you empower your staff to do what they do best and reduce the likelihood of burnout. And if you’re hiring recent graduates, they’re used to sleek, modern software; an outdated, clunky EHR can make them feel your practice is stuck in the past – and looking for more modern pastures.
How to Navigate Salary Negotiations
Research and Preparation
Ensure you understand your budget limitations and the market rate for similar positions before entering negotiation discussions.
Focus on the Total Compensation Package
Consider offering non-monetary benefits like extra vacation time, flexible work arrangements, professional development opportunities, or performance-based bonuses to enhance the compensation package. Emphasize the value of these perks for the candidate’s job satisfaction and long-term growth.
Discuss Expectations and Contributions
Engage in an open and transparent conversation with the candidate about their responsibilities and expected contributions to the role. Emphasize how their skills and experience align with the position and discuss how their contributions can bring value to the organization.
Explore Alternative Solutions
If the candidate’s salary expectation is too high, consider discussing performance-based increases or a salary review after a specified time period.
Be Open to Flexibility
In negotiations, be open-minded and flexible. Explore reallocating budget areas for higher salaries. For instance, reduce costs in other areas or reallocate resources to free up funds. Consider that hiring additional staff could increase revenue. Discuss these possibilities openly with the candidate.
Know Your Limits
It’s important to establish your limits and be prepared to walk away if the candidate’s salary demands are unaffordable and non-negotiable. Find a balance between a mutually beneficial agreement and financial sustainability for your organization.
Maintain a Positive Relationship
Maintain a positive and respectful relationship with the candidate regardless of the outcome or their salary expectations. Leave the door open for future discussions or explore other opportunities within your organization to preserve a positive connection.
Finding the right candidate is especially challenging right now, but these strategies can help you mitigate some of them. Above all, remember to be empathetic. Put yourself in a candidate’s shoes: would you be willing to do that work for that compensation? We wish you the best of luck finding candidates that will help you help others.
We can’t help you find candidates, but we do provide plenty of training materials to help new therapists learn our software. And with intuitive, user-friendly workflows designed to help you save time and earn more revenue, we can help you retain employees. You don’t have to take our word for it. We offer a free 21-day trial (no credit card required) so you can experience how much easier TheraNest can be. And if you have new recruits, why not let them try it too?