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    Locum tenens physicians find assignments online


    Once upon a time, the most effective means for physicians to job hunt were to scan classified ads in medical journals, peruse employment notices in professional organizations' newsletters, or learn about leads by word of mouth at conferences or conventions. The advent and advancement of the Internet has changed the search process altogether. Busy doctors have the convenience of job-hunting whenever and wherever they visit Web sites that introduce them to temporary or permanent practice opportunities.

    Photo: Getty images/Stockbyte
    Job-hunting online is hardly a new idea, of course. Jeff Taylor launched http://Monster.com/ (then called "The Monster Board") in 1994, and the site is now one of the best-known online job boards in the country, posting openings in fields such as healthcare, some of which include locum tenens engagements.

    In the 15 years since Monster's launch, thousands of sites have popped up in cyberspace, each with its own hook, niche, or special features and focus. As a result, the process of searching and applying for jobs online has grown more sophisticated—and complicated. This article will help you navigate through the maze of cyberspace career opportunities, including investigating locum tenens opportunities on prominent job boards.


    While every job board is different, the functionality is often similar and the goal is always the same: matching qualified candidates with sought-after positions. As a locum tenens provider, it's important that you know what distinguishes one job board from another.

    Generic job boards and "job aggregators." These Web sites are geared toward career-minded professionals in major fields, including healthcare. Physician positions are a small part of their total offerings, but you might find some appealing opportunities nestled among other job openings in their healthcare portals.

    General healthcare job boards. These job boards include a cross section of physician openings, along with a wide range of other healthcare positions available, including nursing and allied health.

    Physician job boards. Most physician job boards like http://careers.modernmedicine.com/ are geared to physicians in all major medical specialties, but some have a specific focus on a single specialty and post only anesthesiology, psychiatry, or radiology jobs, for instance. Although physician job boards primarily showcase permanent positions, they do include some opportunities for locum tenens medical practice.

    Niche locum tenens job boards. These Web sites, like http://locumlife.com/, are geared primarily (or exclusively) to job seekers interested in the locum lifestyle. Locum tenens job boards make it easy for physicians to identify locum assignments all over the country.

    Government employer job boards. Physicians interested in practicing in government medical facilities have numerous options. The Indian Health Service posts physician jobs on its site (ihs.gov/), as does the Department of Veterans Affairs (va.gov/). Practice opportunities with the military can be accessed at http://navy.com/careers/, http://goarmy.com/careers/, and military http://connection.com/. The National Institutes of Health (nih.gov/) posts physician-level clinical openings, and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (cdc.gov/) lists medical officer and physician vacancies.

    Professional organization job boards. Most major physician associations post job openings on their Web sites. While employment opportunities are not the primary focus of a given association's Web site, there is usually a section devoted to physician practice opportunities, both permanent and locum tenens.

    Recruiter/placement agency job boards. Many sites are powered by recruitment firms dealing directly with healthcare employers that offer contract assignments for locum tenens coverage. Keep in mind that recruiters compete for the same locum tenens assignments, so there is inevitably some duplication in job postings by different agency recruiters. Always check for fresh postings when visiting job boards in this category.

    Healthcare employers' job boards. Increasingly, hospitals and health systems are attracting physician candidates to open positions via Web-based recruitment. For instance, the Cleveland Clinic has a robust Web site with a section titled "Careers at Cleveland Clinic" devoted to physician openings. Interested candidates can go to http://clevelandclinic.org/, register by e-mail, and receive information on practice opportunities at any of the worldwide Cleveland Clinic facilities—in northeastern Ohio, Florida, Las Vegas, and Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates. If you're looking for some international travel as part of your locum tenens lifestyle, it may be worthwhile investigating Web sites such the Cleveland Clinic's and others that post overseas opportunities.


    Calvin Bruce
    Calvin Bruce serves as senior staff writer for Jackson & Coker and as managing editor of the Jackson & Coker Industry Report.