5 Strategies to Engage and Retain Top Talent

Updated: Oct 28, 2019

You need a new employee to fill your latest Physical Therapist position. It could be due to growth or someone leaving. Whatever it is, you’re looking for someone who’s top talent. The cream of the crop. The best of the best.


So, you put out a job advertisement and wait.


And wait.


And wait.


And still nothing.


At this point you may be starting to panic, wondering how you’re going to fill this position if you don’t have any candidates to talk to.


Luckily for you, we’ve got 5 strategies that will allow you to attract and keep top Physical Therapist talent engaged during the hiring process.


1. Simplify the Application Process

You’re in a dark room with a bright light over your head. Everything’s in black and white as ominous music plays like an old-time Noir drama. Questions fly at you from the mouth of a detective as they ask where you were on the night of the 5th, what you ate for breakfast this morning, and what kind of toothpaste you use.

For many applicants, lengthy job applications can feel this way, and that’s a problem;


according to a study by CareerBuilder, 60% of job seekers quit in the middle of filling out online job applications because of their length or complexity. This means you may be losing out on qualified candidates before they’ve even applied for the position.


So, what can you do to avoid this?


Try reducing the number of fields required, cutting it down to the minimum amount of information you need to contact a candidate. You’ll receive more prospects and save yourself time and headaches. Don’t believe us? AT&T did this very thing, resulting not only in more applicants, but more qualified ones. On top of this, they saved money!


It’s a win-win situation.


2. Acknowledge Effort

Even when the application is easy to complete, it can be disheartening to get no response back. After spending time looking for the right position and filling out the appropriate form, getting no response can make people feel like they’re shouting into an endless void. (Sometimes called “The Resume Black Hole”) When this happens, applicants will often fill this void by applying for multiple positions, ultimately getting to a point where they begin to forget what jobs they’ve even applied for.


To avoid becoming part of this pile of forgotten jobs, consider using a recruitment software system that automatically responds with an acknowledgement of their application. It’s good customer service and, when you reach out to them, they’ll feel they’re more than just a faceless application.


This will allow you to build rapport with them before even reaching out to them, which is a key step to keeping them engaged during this process.


3. Open the Lines of Communication

So, you’ve got your application pared down, acknowledged their submission, and are now looking at the resume of a highly qualified candidate. At this point they’re just one phone call away, right?


Wrong.


While candidates are interested in a job, many aren’t able to pick up during the typical 9-5pm work day. To successfully reach them, consider using a mixture of channels and adapting to what works best. Give them a call, but let them know in the voicemail that you’ll also send an email and text to set up a time to chat.


When you send that email, consider using a resource like you can book me as an effective tool. With this booking software, candidates can simply click on a link and pick a time that works for both you and them, avoiding a lot of unnecessary back-and-forth.


Now, if you don’t hear back from them, don’t fret; plan to follow-up with your candidates. It’s possible your email got lost in their spam folder, or they read your message but simply forgot to respond.


If you’re stubborn, they will eventually get back to you. As Benjamin Franklin said:

“Energy and persistence conquer all things.”

4. Build Their Interest

Once you’ve got the initial phone call set up with your candidate, you may already be coming up with a long list of questions to ensure you’re hiring the right person. While it’s tempting, it’s important to also remember this: PTs are in high demand.


It’s more than likely that the Physical Therapist you’re currently vetting is also talking to one or more additional companies. Because of this, you’ll want to make sure you stand out among the competition.


To do so, make sure you use the phone interview as not only a time to determine a candidate’s fit but, more importantly, as your first chance to talk to them and explain why they should work for your clinic and no one else’s.


This is an opportunity to get to know your candidate and show you value them both as an employee and a person. As they spend more time learning about your company, they’ll be investing time and energy that can translate to an increased desire to work for your company. This can often create a candidate that’s more flexible than if you had gone in immediately with questions.


This further building of rapport will help with the next and final step.


5. Need for Speedy Interviews and Job Offers

After talking with your candidate, ensure you keep their interest by setting up one final in-person interview with a job shadow that same day if needed. While some people opt for multiple rounds of interviews, doing so almost always results in a waste of time for both the employer and candidate. Instead, you’ll end up with a candidate who’s less excited for the position and probably more eager to join a competitor. One interview is the key here.


During this final interview, we recommend asking the candidate for their salary expectations. It’s important to wait until this point as candidates often have a lower expectation after taking into consideration the quality of their prospective work environment.


If you feel by now that this is the perfect candidate that you don’t want to lose, we recommend extending a job offer within the same day of the interview. You’ll be catching your candidate at their peak level of interest, further increasing your chances that they’ll ultimately accept your offer before considering other options.

When making the offer, be sure to meet them either at or above their salary expectations. By doing this, you can rest assured knowing you’ve done everything you can to attract and retain top talent who will loyally work for you, resulting in lower employee turnover rates and higher morale.


In Conclusion

By this point, we hope you’ve learned a strategy or two that you can use to attract and engage top Physical Therapist talent. (Of course all of these strategies and roll over to your other hiring.)


We know this seems like a lot of work, and that’s because it is. Luckily, we do all and more of these tasks every day, so we like to think we’re experts on this. We’d be happy to provide any help we can. For more information on our services feel free to reach out at 414-939-5870

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