The ABCs of Millennial MDs

By Steve Barrett
Monday, May 1, 2017

This isn’t your grandfather’s physician.

That’s the message Kelli Mulloy, President of Lewisville, Texas-based physician recruitment firm The Inline Group, has for recruiters looking to hire millennials — whom the Pew Research Center defines as being 20 to 36 years old. In an interview with recruitment agency PhysEmp, Mulloy outlines three key attributes millennials are bringing to the practice of medicine:

A commitment to technology is baked in the cake.

Technology suffuses all aspects of practice for millennials, which can be both good and bad, according to Mulloy. Smartphones put a fantastic array of diagnostic information in physicians’ hands but are no substitute for face time with a patient.

Work is important, but it’s not everything.

“Millennials won’t wait to begin to enjoy life,” Mulloy says. “They want to participate in the lives of their families and pursue other forms of a meaningful life outside of medicine.” She estimates it now takes three physicians to replace every two who retire.

Debt is still an issue.

The burden of student loans is not getting easier. That has many millennial physicians seeking employment in facilities such as urgent care centers, Mulloy says. They are often able to earn higher pay and pick up additional shifts. Administrative burdens are lighter as well.

Make the Case to Job Candidates

If you were in court, you would expect your attorney to marshal all the facts necessary to secure the best outcome.

Think of physician recruitment the same way, Allison McCarthy, MBA, Principal at healthcare consulting firm Barlow/McCarthy, writes on the company’s blog. It is crucial to make a strong case for why a physician would want to work for your organization.

Vital information includes:

  • Hours spent practicing medicine versus performing administrative tasks
  • The nature of the practice setting, including staff and equipment
  • The availability of support services
  • Call coverage scheduling
  • Information about all aspects of compensation: incentives, salary and benefits
  • Terms of employment or partnership

Candidates also want to know the ways they will benefit professionally by joining your organization, such as opportunities to learn from colleagues and to enhance their procedural capabilities. And they are interested in questions such as whether they have a say in choosing new equipment.

It’s important to demonstrate clearly the need for an additional physician as well. That may take the form of market research regarding access to care. It also doesn’t hurt to have existing team members explain why a new colleague would be a boon to the organization. On that point, McCarthy notes, it is essential to ensure buy-in by the other providers. Absent that buy-in, consider postponing the search.