When hiring medical professionals, developing a compensation package that includes both monetary and non-monetary incentives is important. Paying special attention to relevant forms of compensation based on different needs will help you attract new professionals and retain your current employees.
Understand Financial Needs
Who is your target applicant? If you are seeking new physicians, there is likely a difference between a resident who is trying to land their first job and a seasoned doctor with years of experience. When appealing to new doctors finishing their residency, you should consider cost of living and how it relates to the base salary you are offering. In many cases, new doctors have significant loan debt, which they are in a hurry to pay off and are likely looking for jobs with a competitive salary near localities with a lower cost of living. If your medical setting has any loan repayment programs, this might be part of the compensation package. Doctors may choose to work primarily with uninsured people or agree to extra work hours with these patients in exchange for help with their student loans.
Include Education Incentives And Bonuses
For all doctors and other medical professionals, opportunities for advanced training can be important. This may include continuing education and conferences. Part of your compensation package may include paid leave to attend one or two events each year. If it is in your budget you might offer partial or full reimbursement for basic travel and hotel expenses. This will encourage medical professionals to stay updated to the latest technology in their field, with fewer concerns about missed days from work. Additionally, investing in advanced education will put your medical facility on the map, especially if you have doctors trained in novel approaches to common treatments.
Employees in the nursing field, especially CNAs, LPNs, and bachelor's-level RNs, may find the idea of help with furthering their college education an attractive option. CNAs and LPNs may have the goal of eventually returning to school for their RN. Employees with an RN may want increased job responsibilities by attending graduate programs or seeking additional training to work with special populations.
Since nursing is a high-demand field, some medical facilities add sign-on bonuses to attract more nurses. Some concern with sign-on bonuses is paying out money to new employees that may leave immediately after they receive the bonus. This can lead to employers requiring new employees to remain on a lengthy probationary period, which can be unattractive to new hires. To split the difference, consider an incremental sign-on bonus, starting with payments after a few months of work.
Consider Workplace Environment
Vacation days and better work schedules are important to most employees, but they may be of more concern for medical professionals who work in high-paced fields, mainly the ER or trauma centers. To design a compensation package for medical professionals in high-stress environments, it is best to speak with other professionals who currently work in emergency situations. Due to the lengthy hours in the ER and stress, it could be better to offer an extra week of paid vacation instead of the typical two weeks per year. Some employees may rather work more hours "on" in exchange for more days off between shifts.
Flexibility can be an important part of compensation, especially if there is the incentive of increased schedule flexibility with seniority. Since the ER, especially ones with a Level I trauma center, can be emotionally draining due to the situations medical professionals can encounter, part of your compensation should include free mental health services. Not only are these services helpful in times of crisis, but offering this incentive can encourage your employees to seek help regularly without any fears they will be seen as unfit to handle their job.
When considering a compensation strategy for medical professionals, factoring in the stage of their career, job duties, and work environment, call give you a general idea of what is most important to prospective employees. Finding the right combination of incentives will make your medical facility more appealing and reduce turnover of employees.Talk to a professional compensation strategist through a place like Fox Lawson & Associates, A Division of Gallagher Benefit Services Inc. for more ideas.
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