As one of the most competitive fields in medicine, orthopedic surgery is a highly sought-after specialty that warrants a great deal of effort, pedigree, and, frankly, luck, to become successful. This competitiveness alone is enough to warrant the need for a qualified recruiter, but it’s not the only reason to leverage a recruiter when looking for orthopedic surgeon jobs. Determining your job search criteria and priorities before you start your job search will save valuable time, money, effort—and a great deal of frustration. If you’re a qualified orthopedic surgeon looking for a new job, an orthopedic surgeon recruiter can be an invaluable ally in finding and securing the opportunity that best matches your job search criteria and priorities.
Find orthopedic surgeon jobs that meet your priorities
First, ask yourself, what do I want?
You and whoever may be relocating with you should brainstorm and write down everything that could influence your job search.
Next, rank your list by priority. Is it location? Is it earning potential? Is it work-life balance? Is partnership? When looking at your top priorities, determine which are preferences and which are deal breakers.
Common priorities of orthopedic surgeons
Location is usually the highest priority in an orthopedic surgeon’s job search. An experienced recruiter will have a good understanding of the markets and how location can affect total compensation. As a rule, urban locations are more sought after than rural markets. The more desirable the location, the more likely compensation will be on the lower end. Conversely, for many rural or less desirable locations, the compensation is likely on the higher end because they need to pay more to get an orthopedic surgeon to move there.
- How your fellowship training fits into the group
Many of our orthopedic surgeon candidates indicate that finding a place where they can practice their fellowship training is high in their priorities. However, there are likely to be tradeoffs. If you are looking for 100 percent of your fellowship and taking call only for it, you may have to be more flexible with location and population size. If location is a higher priority, you may have to consider doing less of your fellowship training in your caseload.
- Control over your career and role
Health systems often have positions available, but are you willing to have less control of your position and career? Privately-owned and physician-led groups often provide more control of your responsibilities and long-term management, like general call participation, especially if you become a partner.
Money is important and orthopedic surgeon jobs are often listed and advertised without sharing the full picture of compensation. Focusing on a singular number is a common mistake by first-time job seekers. Straight-salary jobs are often listed, but it is important to learn about the production formula. Is there a payback clause if you fall short in production? What workload is required for the salary? What is the bonus structure if you surpass the production threshold? Is there ancillary income with the partnership? Is there an opportunity to buy into a surgery center? What is the benefits package worth? All these factors should be weighed and considered before accepting an offer.
When do you want to start? On average, it takes about six months from application to onboarding. With that in mind, backtrack from when you want to start and plan accordingly.
- First day at new position
- Credentialing (3-4 months)
- Licensing (2-9 months, varies state by state)
- Contract review and negotiating (1-4 weeks)
- Interview process (1-8 weeks)
- Applying to positions (1-14 days, depending on location and search criteria)
How a recruiter can help find orthopedic surgeon jobs that meet your priorities
We know many things can drive the search for a new job and finding the right fit is about meeting those expectations. At Priority Physicians, we’re not simply placing surgeons. We are finding the right fit for all parties involved. We believe that success isn’t about making the placement, but about creating a long-term fit.
- Working with a recruiter can save time and energy
Most orthopedic surgeon jobs aren’t advertised via traditional methods or on social media. An experienced orthopedic surgeon recruiter has resources specific to the orthopedic surgery market and in addition to the AAOS. Instead of spending hours sifting through job postings and sending out applications, a recruiter can do the legwork for you and present you with a curated list of job opportunities that match your fellowship training. An experienced recruiter can qualify the position much quicker and get the important answers and details you need to make a decision.
- A recruiter can help you navigate the interview and hiring process
Working with a qualified orthopedic surgeon recruiter can be beneficial before, during, and after the interview process. From helping you prepare for the interview process to advising you on your approach to negotiating, a recruiter can help you maximize your chances and offer insights along the way.
- Recruiters can give you an edge
Finally, using a recruiter can give you an edge over other job seekers. Because recruiters have relationships with hiring managers and decision makers at top hospitals and clinics, they can often get your application in front of the right people and help you stand out from the competition or even get an interview before the position is advertised! This sometimes happens with succession planning for a senior orthopedic surgeon who is preparing his retirement strategy.
Overall, working with a recruiter can be a valuable investment in your career as an orthopedic surgeon. Not only can a recruiter help you find the right orthopedic surgeon jobs, but they can also provide valuable support and guidance as you identify your priorities and navigate the job search process. If you’re looking for a new opportunity in the field of orthopedic surgery, contact Priority Physicians to maximize your chances of success.