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Since your patient care matters, your choice of locum tenens agencies matters too. Luckily, there are clear ways to identify a great locum tenens provider.
We’ve included a few perceptive questions (and the reasoning behind them) to help you zero down on the best agencies like experienced clinical directors.
It can be useful for healthcare employers to work with multiple locum tenens agencies.
The advantages of having a clinician-led leadership are that there will be less of a learning curve and more opportunities for collaboration. When your staffing resource understands your perspective, your operations are likely to become more simplified and seamless.
Communicating with a locum tenens provider that lacks the involvement of medical experts can be a challenge, as a doctor's perspective can have a positive, holistic impact on decision-making. So, remember to check your agency's medical background before collaborating with them.
In healthcare, it can be difficult to know at first glance if an agency uses the latest communication tools. Even after you’ve picked a candidate, credentialing can be a major bottleneck. Ask the agency if they have a dedicated resource for credentialing on their team and if they have worked with similar employers before.
As a rule, newer agencies tend to be more “disruptive” than their competitors. They avoid unnecessary policies, and pass on savings to be competitive. For example, DirectShifts started from the ground up with advanced technology and low overhead costs. We’ve found that our charges to hospitals are around 40% lower than legacy agencies. Make sure you ask your agency for a fair price.
You deserve personal attention in all your dealings with a locum tenens agency. Try to determine red flags such as excessive fees or unclear expectations. Will you have access to the agency's candidate pool, or will they hold all the cards? Do potential candidates feel like they’ve been treated fairly? Check to see if all costs, benefits and drawbacks have been disclosed up front.
Most questions for staffing agencies revolve around timelines — when will clinicians be available to interview? And when will they be available to start?
It is critical that locum tenens agencies deploy on your timelines and not according to others convenience.
What’s the best way to distinguish between a locum tenens provider and a recruiter? Consider how doctor-specific their recruitment practices are.
An agency that’s ready to make travel arrangements and provide malpractice insurance without hassling you meets the basic criteria to be your locum tenens partner. Agencies that handle career guidance and related services are even better.
Most agencies offer similar services to start with, hence a comparison study is essential to findthe right fit.
Sign up on DirectShifts.com for an agency that reliably meets these needs.
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This article was updated on 8th July, 2021.