Team Locum introduced its new Permanent recruitment Division nearly two years ago now.
It is generating the time-honoured Team Locum buzz. Why such interest?
Well, as we mentioned in the introductory post, Team Locum is a well-established brand, with a wide-ranging list of contacts.
Furthermore, the division is being driven forward by highly skilled permanent recruitment experts, Chris and Grant.
But Team Locum has always held a few little secrets – special advantages, which make the company a leader in its field. One such special advantage, is the candidate application process…
THE APPLICATION PROCESS
As a specialist healthcare agency, Team Locum is bound by the law to make certain checks, and to maintain standards of proficiency in relation to all the healthcare professionals it provides to clients. But it’s the agency’s understanding of the value within an application’s information quota that makes a telling difference.
For Team Locum, the application structure is not simply a series of legal formalities. It’s a means of differentiating between the diversity of skills offered by individual healthcare professionals.
All businesses know that one locum optometrist or one locum pharmacist is not the same as the next, and each practice requires a slightly different focus of skills.
That’s why both pharmacies and optometrists need a specialist agency. But if a specialist agency is not determining, at square one, the precise areas in which each candidate will excel, there’s no point in the client using a specialist permanent recruitment agency at all.
As one would expect, the Team Locum recruitment process requires proof of all essential documentation, including the professional necessities like GOC/GPHC registration, indemnity insurance, etc.
But the agency also requires verified references from two separate professionals. And there’s a lot more to a set of references than some people realise…
WHY ARE REFERENCES IMPORTANT?
If you know Team Locum, you won’t be expecting a statement of the obvious here – and you’ll be pleased to know that your instincts are spot on. References are often considered a Yes/No affair. There’s a line of doom down the middle.
Anything below the line of doom is unacceptable. Anything above the line is fine. End of story. But at Team Locum, that’s not even the first chapter.
Naturally, poor or indifferent references are inevitably going to close down an application, but in a broader sense, Team Locum sees referencing as a more complex issue, and believes that references are as beneficial for applicants as they are for clients.
FOR THE CLIENT
Given the severe difficulty businesses experience in finding a locum pharmacist or a locum optometrist, there might be a temptation for some agencies to place very light emphasis on referencing. But placing a heavier emphasis on referencing has brought extremely favourable results across the breadth of Team Locum.
Not only does referencing weed out applicants who won’t meet the required standard – it also frequently gives an early guide as to the key points within an applicant’s skillset and as an established locum agency as well as now an established permanent recruitment agency.
These are the details references can instantly reveal. And because the information comes from third party professionals with no personal interest in the application, it’s generally very reliable.
FOR THE CANDIDATE
But candidates should not see referencing as an inconvenience, or as something purely in the client’s interests. Referencing helps all Permanent Optometrists and permanent pharmacists. Here are some of the reasons why…
Thorough referencing as a permanent recruitment agency policy reassures the more select and prestigious clients, and therefore opens up a much greater choice of placement options for the candidate.
It might be easier for an applicant to register with a locum agency whose protocols are less rigorous, but if that agency doesn’t have such an impressive client list, the applicant will be limiting his or her life prospects just to make an application slightly more convenient.
FINDING THE MATCH
Some locum agency processes incorporate a fairly rigid questionnaire, but the Team Locum approach is far more two-way in nature. It’s very much about dialogue. Encouraging Permanent Optometrists and Permanent Pharmacists to talk and express themselves, rather than hitting them with a script.
In fact, it can be the questions asked by applicants, as opposed to the questions they answer, that point to some of the most relevant matching criteria.
Matching a candidate with a client’s needs still, however, requires the investment of a lot of time. There’s no substitute for that time investment.