Like many businesses, the staffing decisions you make can go a long way to determining how successful your practice is. We have discussed before the importance of great customer service as it pertains to growing your practice. Having the right people in place goes a long way in determining how successful your customer service efforts are.
When you think of your staffing needs it is easy to focus on the technicians, people with administrative duties, or even nurses. However, every practice needs physicians in order to provide care.
In some places or in certain situations it is not always easy to find a physician to fill your needs. That is why we wanted to look at locum tenens.
Locum tenens are doctors who accept temporary positions in hospitals or other independent practices. If you are experiencing a shortage in staffing when it comes to physicians, then hiring a locum tenen might be the solution for you.
Let’s look at how hiring a locum tenen can benefit your practice.
- Flexibility – If you have a physician who will be out because of a vacation, maternity leave, or some other reason then you have a gap that needs to be filled. Hiring a full-time, permanent physician won’t work because what happens when the physician that is out comes back to work? Suddenly you are overstaffed.
What if your staffing needs are met, but you need someone to help fill in during the holidays or some other busy season?
In both cases, a locum tenen can give you the flexibility to fill your needs while not tying you down to one solution.
- Better Patient Experience – One particularly bad side effect of being understaffed is that your patients will most likely feel like they are being underserved. This is understandable. Your practice is trying to treat the same amount of patients with less physicians available. This means that somewhere in the process of being treated it is likely that some patients may not feel like they are properly heard or that they are being rushed in and out.
If you are not quite ready to hire a full-time physician or cannot find someone to take the role permanently, a locum tenen can help you fill in the gaps so that you can provide better care and a better experience for your patients.
- See More Patients – As alluded to above, if you have more physicians available then you can see more patients. More patients generally result in more revenue.
- Potential To Grow Your Practice – Growing your practice is rarely a straightforward proposition. You will see periods of growth, decline, and even plateauing. Utilizing locum tenens gives you the flexibility to hire more physicians when needed or pull back during lean times. This also allows you to provide better care and see more patients. In the end you can use locum tenens as a way to see how you would go about growing your practice so that you are better prepared when the time comes.
One of the worst places you can be as a business owner is feeling like you are trapped with little to no options. The true benefit of locum tenens is that it gives you options when it comes to managing and growing your practice. Used correctly, locum tenens can help you through a temporary shortage of physicians, busy seasons, or for any situation that dictates you have some staffing flexibility.