Patient care is your top priority. Therefore, what matters to them should matter to you. If you’re trying to decide whether or not to partner with a locum tenens staffing agency, this thought is probably stuck in your head 24/7.
It can be difficult to fully understand what will be expected of you when entering a partnership with locum staffing. And if you’re trying to quickly fill vacancies in your schedule due to physician burnout, you don’t want to waste time with the small, insignificant details.
Luckily, there are some questions that you can ask when comparing locum tenens services to help give you a clear picture of what you’ll be getting — for your facility and your patients. They will give you a clearer view of the bigger picture and eliminate any doubts or fears you may have.
The answer to these questions will help guide your decision-making process:
Of course, you can and should ask as many questions as you like, adjusting the questions based on your specific needs.
This question may seem like an obvious one to ask. After all, you wouldn’t consider a locum tenens recruiting agency in the first place if it didn’t have what you need. But it never hurts to ask so you have the information later down the road.
If you develop a long-lasting partnership with a locum tenens agency, it’s good to know all capabilities of their business. This includes the different types of talent and medical workers they recruit.
If you find a staffing agency you like working with, they can become your go-to solution for a variety of positions when you need medical staffing in a pinch.
Convenience and timeliness go a long way when choosing a long-term locum tenens agency. Knowing how quickly you’ll be able to interview a potential locum is great; knowing when they can actually start is even better.
A reliable locum tenens staffing agency provides services on your schedule, not its own schedule. So make sure this is clear as you speak with an agency.
You could also use the words “honesty” and “transparency” here. And together they are two of the most important qualities that locum tenens staffing agencies can possess.
Ask any questions you may have up front, and be on the lookout for any red flags that the agency may give away. Leave no stone unturned when it comes to finding out what your wait time and total cost look like.
Also ask about the agency’s candidate pool, and see if you can review it before making a deal. Most agencies shouldn’t have an issue with this, as it allows you to get a better idea of what your options are.
Credentialing hurdles can really flatline the process of bringing in your new staff member. And with so many different licensing laws between states, it can be stressful trying to sort through eligible candidates.
Find out if the agency has a credentialing team that ensures your locum(s) will come with all the proper licenses. If so, has the provider worked with other employers similar to yourself?
If you can interview and choose a locum without having to worry about the credentialing process, you’ll save a ton of time and headache.
You may not even be looking for a specific answer here. Instead, this gives candidates the chance to provide you with an honest assessment of their services, and can give you an idea of what their top priorities are.
If you can find that one agency that specializes in the exact service you need, then you’re off to a great start with choosing the right locum tenens provider.
Once you’ve asked everything you wanted to ask, sit down and assess all the information you’ve gained. Think carefully about which locum staffing agency will best be able to accommodate your unique needs.
Now it’s time to ask yourself some questions. “What are my facility’s long- and short-term needs?” and “How much time do I have to find a solution?” are two great questions to start with.
The best way to battle vacancies in your medical staffing is through locum tenens. And finding a long-term partner you can trust will help keep patient care your #1 commitment.