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Career Coach

Good Recruiters: How Do You Find Them?

Published February 24, 2011 1:23 PM by Renee Dahring
Clinicians write me frequently asking me to recommend a recruitment company. Let me give you a little history. For those of you who may not know, I was a recruiter for NPs and PAs for several years.

During the recruiting heyday, which was about 3-5 years ago, it seemed as if almost everyone with a computer and Internet access was setting up a recruitment company. Jobs were plentiful, and there were more jobs than clinicians, so employers desperately needed to fill them. Everyone was eager to recruit NPs and PAs. It was a great time to be a recruiter. It was also a great time to be an advanced practice clinician as we had our pick of jobs. Then the market changed and the economic downturn eliminated a many of those “mom and pop” staffing agencies, and as a result a lot of these recruiters and smaller staffing companies were forced to close up shop.     

Now don’t get me wrong, this wasn’t all bad. When the recruiting cottage industry sprang up there were more than a few companies playing fast and loose with recruiting ethics. Many of these recruiters routinely mined online resume databases then traded and submitted job seekers' resumes without ever having any communication with the candidates. We called this “churn and burn” and advised job seekers to do their research carefully before getting involved with any recruiter.

During that time the larger companies were also suddenly taking an interest in NPs and PAs and beginning to add divisions in their agencies specifically to work with us “mid-levels.” Initially these well-established companies weren’t all that sure what we did, and many tended to treat us either as sort of a “physician lite” or a glorified nurse. They meant well but didn’t really know how to talk to folks in our profession. While this may be irritating the good news is that these well established companies do practice ethical recruiting and have good reputations. The learning curve was steep for them but most are up to speed and do a decent job for us.

Back to my advice. Each company will have different strengths and all have access to different jobs so it’s really to your benefit to shop around and not limit yourself to one company. I have a few recruiters that over time I have come to know and trust and will often refer job seekers to them.

This gives me a great idea for my print column… stay tuned.

Email me your questions about working with recruiters or

post them on my Facebook wall.

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posted by Renee Dahring


NAHCR (National Association for Health Care Recruitment) is the pre-eminent professional association for nursing and allied health care recruiters.  

NAHCR consists of over 900 national members from facilities throughout the U.S., as well as 40 local chapters.  

Check them out at:  

Scott Sundy, , Industry Relations Manager ADVANCE February 25, 2011 8:34 AM

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About this Blog

    Occupation: Nurse Practitioners and NP Recruiters
    Setting: correctional healthcare/career consulting/teaching
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