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As 2020 slowly creeps towards 2021, many residents and fellows are still job searching. In the past, I have been approached by physicians asking if they should hold off on searching for jobs between November and January. In short, no! Even though the winter holiday season is approaching in the United States, that does not mean hospitals and healthcare organizations are shutting down their recruitment.
So how can you continue your job search during the holiday season?
One huge positive from 2020 is the movement to virtual events. With virtual events, you do not have to worry about dealing with traffic, parking, and deciding if you want to run home to change first before the event or try to grab some dinner first. Instead, you can go home, take a breath, and log on when you are ready. Virtual events also prevent you from being around strangers during the pandemic and flu season!
Many recruiters are still working to fill positions at the end of the year. You can search for recruiters on LinkedIn, or even find their contact information on job postings. Building a good relationship with a recruiter can help you stand out amongst other candidates. Start by sending a friendly, professional introduction message to the recruiter and let them know that you'd like to know about open opportunities at their organization for your specialty. Remember, this is a professional conversation, and you want to make an excellent first impression! If you are open to practice in different areas, they may know of other clinics or hospitals in their organization that have openings. Keep in mind, even if they do not currently have an opening for you, to keep in contact with them for future opportunities. Being connected with physician recruiters on LinkedIn or other professional networks will also keep you in the loop when they post or share opportunities.
Job openings do not quit being posted because it's almost the end of the year. Organizations are continually updating their job boards, no matter what time of year. You can set up alerts on job boards like PracticeMatch to receive notifications about opportunities that match your job preferences. You can also set up Google Alerts or similar alerts to be notified about your specialty's new opportunities.
Towards the end of the year, many recruiters and other professionals use paid time off (PTO). This means you may receive an out of office response if you send an email. Before you dismiss this as a lost cause, look for a return to office date or another point of contact in the reply. If there is another recruiter mentioned, reach out to them! If there is not another point of contact listed, mark their return date on your calendar. Having their return marked will remind you to follow up with the recruiter. Do not bombard them with multiple calls and emails on their first day back, though! Instead, send a follow-up email or leave a follow-up voicemail that you look forward to hearing back from them when they get caught up from their time off.
Don't let the myth that physician recruitment stops during the holidays prevent you from finding your perfect opportunity! Looking for more job search tips? Check out our Physician Articles!
Hayley Woszczynski - Physician & Program Relations Manager. You can stay connected with me on LinkedIn for all of the latest PracticeMatch articles and upcoming events.