Published: Apr 2, 2018
Time to read: 4mins
Category: Insights

Healthcare Recruiters: It’s Time to Start Asking Questions

Guest author, recruitment expert and the author of The Consultative Recruiter and How to Do Small Talk Fearlessly, Katherine Moody, examines the kind of questions healthcare recruiters can ask hiring managers to help achieve hiring success.

If you’re a recruiter in the US healthcare industry, my hat’s off to you. You’ve taken on what may be the most daunting recruiting challenge across all markets. I'm talking about a tumultuous employment landscape in which:

  • You’re continuously recruiting the same positions—nurses, genetic counselors, physical therapists... the list goes on
  • Qualified candidates are scarce, especially those with experience
  • New graduates get snapped up fast
  • Boomer retirements are creating a flood of openings
  • Competition is high, both within healthcare and from other industries
  • Your hiring managers and candidates all have hectic schedules, leaving even less time for recruiting

To make things worse, organizations and hiring managers tend to overestimate the power of recruiting software—especially systems powered by artificial intelligence—to find the right candidates.

In my experience, this overestimation is grounded in a prevailing misperception that recruiting amounts to no more than finding candidates… and then finding more candidates.

Also read: 'Increase Hiring Efficiency With These 4 Best Practices'

So What’s a Healthcare Recruiter to Do?

Believe it or not, the answer lies in the power of questions to forge better relationships with hiring managers and get the information you need not just to find candidates, but to fill positions.

It may seem counterintuitive, but asking questions is not only the best way to elicit information; it’s the best way to demonstrate your expertise. It also helps your hiring manager stop multitasking and focus on the conversation. They’re only human, after all, and humans like to talk about themselves—their needs, their opinions, their timelines.

But not just any question will do. You have to ask the right kind, and what you do after posing the question also matters. A lot.

More from the blog: '5 Candidate Sourcing Strategies to Build Your Talent Pipeline'

The Anatomy of a Good Question

A good question—one that will move your candidate search and hiring process forward—follows a few key principles:

  • It starts with anything but “why.” "Why" questions can make people feel cornered. Instead, ask things like who are you looking for, what qualifications are needed, how much time do you need to review these resumes, how many more candidates do you need to see, and when will you be ready to make an offer?
  • It’s short and precise. This is how you adapt to a world in which our attention spans are supposedly shortening.
  • It’s followed by silence. Give your hiring manager time to think and answer.
  • It’s also followed by more questions. Don’t end the conversation too soon. Every detail you get will help you find the candidate your hiring manager is looking for.

If you’re thinking it can’t be that easy, you’re not alone. I’ve heard that many times across more than 11 years of coaching recruiters to adopt a consultative approach. But I assure you it works!

The right questions can help you transform your relationship with hiring managers, enabling you to:

  • Get them to stick to time commitments
  • Turn vague responses like “not a fit” and “I’ll know it when I see it” into actionable feedback
  • Help them understand why a position is challenging to fill
  • Handle surprises that extend your search, like balking at the offer stage or inserting additional interviews

Hot off the blog: 'Here’s How To Improve Candidate Quality and Hiring Speed With a CRM Strategy'

Learn More About Recruiting Best Practices

In a webinar, I shared specific questions to get healthcare recruiters started on the path to becoming a consultative recruiter. If you’re ready to reboot your hiring manager relationships, and fill reqs faster, watch the recorded webinar and start channeling your inner consultative recruiter today!

About the Author
Katherine Moody is the author of The Consultative Recruiter and How to Do Small Talk Fearlessly. For over 27 years, she has been helping companies find great talent and job seekers to find their ideal roles. In addition to managing large virtual recruiting teams, she has worked with companies such as The Cheesecake Factory, The Walt Disney Company, St. Joseph Healthcare, P.F. Changs, Fox Entertainment, and Yahoo. She has an MBA from the University of Southern California and an Executive MBA from the Peter Drucker Management Center of Claremont University

Recommended reading to download today: '5 Recruiting Metrics that Drive Business Value'

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