Most things in the world of healthcare process improvement are difficult to fix. Not your Recruiting Brand.

It can be honed and refined easily and cost effectively. Yet companies frequently ignore it or push it down to the “when we get to it” category.

Enhancing your company’s recruiting brand does not necessarily mean you will get and keep the best talent. But it is the ticket to get in the game. Liken it to a graduate management degree which can become the key to achieving an executive level career. A well-defined brand also boosts the ability to address a costly and chronic problem when recruiting candidates from outside the organization: tenure.

Poor tenure is a perennial recruitment problem and a significant hidden cost. Recent studies show that the candidates recruited from outside an organization on average, about 18 months. This includes professional staff, department managers, and directors, to the executive office. The best way to mitigate this risk when recruiting externally is to create a best-in-industry recruiting process that is integrated with your enterprise-wide onboarding program.

Even though the recruiting process is not terribly complex, there are multiple levels and steps, and there are multiple chances for defects to develop and to miss opportunities.

There are key questions that I ask a CEO to determine whether he can recruit and retain the best people in a talent war. These questions are just one part of our three-day human capital assessment. Our questions include:

1. Do you have a written Recruitment Brand Statement? Does your team know what it is? More importantly, do your in-house recruiters know what it is?
2. How many candidate inquiries are generated by the organization’s web site, newspapers, internal recruiter telephone sourcing, contingent recruiters, etc.?
3. Do all candidates receive acknowledgement of their interest in the organization?
4. Do all candidates receive an email, telephone call, or letter if they are not selected?
5. Do you have established candidate screening and interview processes and schedules for each step and each position/category?
6. Do your recruiters report process or exception defects?
7. Do you have written profiles for each position that you provide to qualified candidates? Do the profiles include mission, vision and values statements, performance expectations, cultural profile, compliance statements, reporting relationships, etc?
8. Does your web site provide for on-line applications, automated candidate responses, access for search engine sweeps (to distribute job postings to a larger pool of candidates)
9. Do your recruiters know who the names of local or regional candidates they would target when vacancies occur in mission critical positions? Do you track ideal candidates in your recruiting database?
10. Do you have an onboarding program versus employee orientation? Does your onboarding program begin before your recruitment program is launched? Are your onboarding and your recruiting programs fully integrated?

The overarching question is this: Do you want to eliminate one of the largest hidden costs on your hospital’s financial statement?

Develop and implement a measurable recruiting program that includes an effective onboarding process. In turn, you’ll have less reliance on external recruiters, higher quality candidates, and a lower turnover rate.

If you have questions, don’t hesitate to call on me. We can help you improve your recruiting brand and reduce your costs.

John G. Self is Chairman and Senior Client Advisor of JohnMarch Partners. He is a Co-Founder of the Firm.

A former investigative reporter and crime writer with more than 30-years of healthcare leadership experience in public relations, national marketing, business development and as Chief Executive Officer of hospitals and consulting firms, Mr. Self is highly regarded for his keen insight into operations, business culture and for his ability to consistently select the right leaders.

John is a highly rated speaker on inspirational leadership, career brand management and the future of healthcare in America. To contact Mr. Self regarding a speaking date, contact him at JohnMarch Partners.

You can contact Mr. Self at 214.220.1234 or He is an active member of LinkedIn and a frequent editorial contributor. You can also connect with John through his Facebook profile.

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