Schools of Social Work are producing about 20,000 newly minted MSWs each year and nationally the unemployment rate is still well over 8%; so why do we have so much trouble recruiting therapists? Why do we have six therapist openings right now? Are new graduates unrealistic in their salary expectations, or do they have much student loan debt, they are desperately seeking a way to deal with it.
Below are some brainstorms from a variety of sources, although I’m not sure how effective (or even legal some of them are).
- Competitive Compensation: Review and revise salary scales and procedures for giving credit for past experience or special abilities in order to make compensation more competitive.
- Sign-On Bonuses Program: Develop graduated sign-on bonus program to provide bonus compensation upon hire and at milestones to increase recruitment and retention.
- Job Fair Program: Conduct periodic job fairs internally and participate in external job fairs.
- Reward Managers for Excellence in Hiring: Provide incentive bonuses to effective hiring managers to motivate them to make hiring a top priority.
- Employee Referral Program: Establish a formal program to provide monetary incentives to current employees for making referrals for open positions.
- Former Employee Referral Program: This involves successfully using an aggressive employee referral marketing campaign that, combined with cash incentives, quarterly sweepstakes, and team bonuses—increase referral submittals. Encourages former center employees use their current network to indentify possible referrals and receive a bounty payment when they successfully refer candidates back to the center.
- Internal Development: Develop an employee mobility program to supplement its external recruiting effort. Proactively seek out internal candidates to develop into needed jobs—care manager therapists.
- Search Engine Optimization: Use search engine optimization processes on major search engines to increase the visibility of center vacancies .
- Social networks: Implement a social media strategy to include greater visibility on Facebook, LinkedIn, and Twitter.
- Speed of Hire: Streamline the hiring process to increase the speed of making initial offers and closing the deal.
- Former Employee/Boomerang Program: Establish a boomerang program to reach out and try to rehire desirable former employees.
- Social Media Program: Web presence should communicate the center’s opportunities. Program should include an active Facebookpage, GOOGLE+. LinkedIngroup, You TubeChannel, and Twitter. Provide multiple opportunities for potential recruits to interact with organization through social media sites and list services, chat rooms and microblogs.
- Develop Steps or Levels within Clinical Positions: Create an internal career ladder that allows for increases in salary and responsibilities without staff members having to leave clinical positions to become managers or supervisors, in order to increase retention of senior staff.
- Develop Remote Work Program: Structure positions to allow more at-home work and telecommuting where possible.
- School Loan Assistance Program: Develop internal program to help new graduates with school loan assistance (financial planning and counseling, low interest loans. Bonuses, deferrals, payroll deductions, etc.).
- Health Insurance Assistance Program: Develop internal program to help people who cannot accept offers because of the differential in insurance coverage that would take place if they left their old job. Consider sign-on bonuses. Get them help with insurance planning and locating reasonable alternatives.
- Targeted Marking Efforts: In recruitment, emphasize metapay aspects of positions (professional status, helping professions, collegial aspects, personal growth, social mission orientation.)
- Contacts with Schools and University: Develop relationships and send list of vacancies periodically to chairs of relevant local college departments (social work, psychology, counseling, etc.) use social media to contact students with openings. Contact students who have done field placements at organization.
- Travel/Gasoline Assistance: Compensate new hires who live farther away for additional travel or gasoline expenses by starting them hirer in the salary range.
Please share your own ideas or best practices on how to boost the effectiveness of clinical recruiting.