Trend Shows New Doctors Looking for Jobs Earlier

Kyle Claussen

A recent Residents and Fellows survey highlights an emerging trend among new doctors. An overwhelming majority (61% of graduating doctors) of the 2013 residents and fellows began their interviewing process prior to the January before commencement with 52% signing contracts by the following March. This is a near 50% increase to the graduating class of 2012. This trend continues to hold true for the class of 2014 as a majority of surveyed residents and fellows recently have begun searching with hopes of beginning the physician interview process in the fall and winter months.

The survey released by Cejka Executive Search also revealed several personal factors that influence new physicians practice choices and locations. These factors include proximity to family, interest in location of significant other, and specialty preference. Similarly, the survey shows that nearly 58% new physicians in 2013 selected to stay in the practice location in which they were trained (increasing from the 46% in 2012). Additional survey findings show:

  • The vast majority of survey respondents tend to select suburban communities as their primary or secondary choices as opposed to metropolitan communities.
  • Almost a quarter of respondents chose a rural community as their primary choice. Increasing by 16% from 2012.
  • Nearly half of respondents have or are considering fellowship opportunities. By specialty, two-thirds of internal medicine residents and and nearly one-third of family medicine have considered further training opportunities.
  • Approximately 30% of respondents have significant others that are physicians. Two-physician couples play a significant role in retention when one spouse accepts a position while the other continues training.
  • Personally networking with colleagues, attendings, and program directors proves to be the most common resource used by residents and fellows looking for practicing opportunities.

Most physicians in the job market have waited patiently, and at times maybe even anxiously, to begin their interviewing process. It is the first major milestone in their careers that culminates all of the training, long hours, and hard work. Thus, beginning an early job search is one of the most effective ways to ensure that you are aware of the most suitable opportunities to advance your career. In doing so, you will have a headstart in the sometimes lengthy process, have the advantage over your peers with whom you compete, and have ample room to maneuver the unexpected. This trend will continually grow in the coming years as the demand for new physicians increase. So in order to assure that you have the best career opportunities it’s best to start your job search sooner than later.