How to Overcome Your Long-Distance Healthcare Job Search

Dawn Pascale

Have you ever wanted to move away and start fresh somewhere else? Perhaps you found your dream job – but it’s located five states over.   Maybe you’re being sweet-talked back home by an aging parent.   Whatever the catalyst for conducting an out-of-state job search, it’s both exciting and anxiety-inducing.  Doing it right requires a lot of forethought and planning.

We’ve compiled a no-nonsense strategy for where to start when finding a job in another state.

Start With Recruiters

While you may think applying for a job online is the best place to start, consider reaching out to recruiters first.  Many healthcare recruiters specialize in placing providers in opportunities across the country. That means they have the acumen to talk to you about what’s trending in the city you’re considering.  They know the supply of jobs at your skill level and the general economic conditions impacting the market.  Important to most is getting the full picture on how much you can get paid – they know that too. 

Consider Where You Want to Work

Identify which healthcare facilities you want to work at before you apply. Whether you discover opportunities on your own or a recruiter presents you with some, starting an internet search is the next step! Review Glassdoor employee rankings to see what employees are saying about the facility and organization. Look at the hospital or healthcare provider’s vision and mission and see if it aligns with your own.  Even look at any press releases to determine what initiatives the facility is undertaking.

Dig Deeper

If you have a target list of places you’d like to work, but you can’t find any current openings listed online, circle back with your recruiter.  If they have a solid working relationship or history with any of the healthcare facilities on your list, that could be your ticket in.  Recruiters can reach out to see about any open positions that are not visible to the public, or that may become available shortly.  If you prefer to do this yourself and you have the time, try reaching out to HR departments directly or connect with them via LinkedIn. 

Address Relocation Early

While employers today are savvy enough to know that top candidate may not be local, an out of towner will still be viewed as a risk.  Explain your desire to relocate in your cover letter.  This immediately addresses concerns with you being an out-of-state applicant and shows the hiring manager or recruiter that you are serious about moving.  In this cover letter, mention any roots or network you have in the city of your choice.  Having some tangible reason to move to a city, other than a job, will legitimize your interest in the eyes of the employer.  

Lean On Your Network

Make sure you’ve thoroughly considered whether a move to a particular city is a good fit for your lifestyle and career aspirations.  Reach out to professional associations you’re connected to, or your local alumni association to see if they can help. These connections are incredibly useful when you need to find others that live in this city, a good real estate agent, religious institutions, medical professionals, and leisure activities.  Most importantly, they’ll give you the inside scoop on what it’s really like to live there. Worst case scenario is that you save time and energy from making the wrong move. 

Physical Presence

There’s no better way to show you’re serious about relocating than making an effort to being there.  Give the potential employer or recruiter your dates available to interview.  If it requires a flight, give 2-4 weeks interview lead-time to minimize travel costs.   Additionally, you can “batch” several interviews together if you’re talking with multiple organizations.  Be willing to share costs or pay for your travel expenses as a way to set you apart from local candidates.  You or your recruiter can negotiate reimbursement for those travel costs should you take the opportunity. 

By putting in a little effort and targeting the right opportunities, you’ll be packing your bags in no time.  With over 20 years of experience, the team at MedSource Consultants can help you make this move.  If you’re seeking to relocate, connect with our leading healthcare recruiters today.