How to Select a Locum Tenens Agency


It isn’t surprising to find healthcare facilities being short of medical staff. The reasons vary and could include the exit of some staff, emergencies within the healthcare locality, expansion needs, etc. Whatever might be the reason, the bottom line is that the institution requires qualified helping hands.

Getting such personnel on such short notice can be difficult for the institution to organize on its own. Thankfully, this is where a Locum Tenens Agency can come in. These agencies specialize in placing medical professionals temporarily at healthcare facilities when such facilities are short-staffed.

With so many of these agencies now available in the U.S., how does one sieve the wheat from the chaff to get a reliable agency? You don’t need to answer that because that is why we are here.

In this article, we will provide you with reliable tips that will guide you on how to select a locum tenens firm that is just right for your organization.

Let’s begin, shall we?

1. Ask for Referrals

Recruiting staff for the first time can be somewhat challenging. This challenge is further intensified if what you seek is a locum tenens firm.

Therefore, your best bet will be to ask folks within your field for referrals of such agencies that they partnered with in the past or currently. Taking this step will enable you to get some names of agencies that have been proven and tested by the colleagues who made the referrals.

2. You Don’t Need So Many Agencies

While you go about asking for referrals, an extremely long list shouldn’t be your target. If you do that, you will make the task more tiring. Instead, get a select few that you believe are reliable; your judgment should be based to an extent on the credibility of the person who referred the firm.

Working with so many agencies could make the entire recruiting process more tedious. Imagine having 7 firms that you contact to help you get a professional. All 7 may come up with a candidate. How then do you go about choosing the right person? This shouldn’t even be your job in the first place.

Therefore, stick with just a few agencies; there is no specific number. However, your institution’s needs and size are factors that play a role in this decision.

3. Work with Agencies that Vet their Candidates

Any locum agency worth its salt will, first of all, investigate its candidates thoroughly before referring them to healthcare facilities. The fact that this is obtainable doesn’t mean every firm does this.

Therefore, when you contact the company, ask them about their screening process. A trustworthy company will openly share that process when asked. If they don’t, then you can take your business elsewhere.

Even when they share the screening process with you, talk to the person that the candidate worked under at their last assignment. This will give you an idea of the candidate’s work ethic. Click here to check out some examples of good employee work ethics.

4. Strong Support System

What do we mean by this? We are simply referring to the system put in place by the locum firm to provide its candidates with licenses and credentials. Licenses and credentials are important to determine the qualification of the candidate.

Therefore, make sure you ask what support is offered by the agency to those working with and for them.

5. Discuss Contracts

A contract shouldn’t be fixed and this is something that an experienced firm should know. Hence, you shouldn’t just accept the terms that are in a contract. Instead, you should have a discussion with the company regarding areas that you aren’t comfortable with.

To get the best deal, you need to be knowledgeable to a certain degree. This will ensure that the firm doesn’t end up taking advantage of you.

Do not allow the urgency of the need to get staff to push you into making hasty decisions. In most cases, you will need to have several discussions with the agency to agree on terms that will be beneficial to both parties.

If you don’t find certain requirements that aren’t included in the contract, feel free to speak up. Tell them what you want, and have it included in the contract.

6. Work towards Partnership

One mistake that recruiters make that hurts them in the long run is that they hire a locum tenens company in the same manner they hire their in-house staff. Visit to learn how to recruit employees.

It is better to strive towards partnership and get a locum company in your corner than always going back to them and transacting business anew.

Make them feel like you want them to be a part of your organization’s growth in the same way you want to be part of theirs. This will allow both parties to relate more freely and openly since they have the same thoughts and expectations.

This will prove beneficial for you as you will only get qualified professionals from the agency whenever you need them at a partner price.

7. Get the Perfect Fit for your Organization

If you are going to be partnering with any company, such a company must understand the culture, needs, and values of your organization. Such understanding will enable them to provide you with suitable professionals that will be perfect for your healthcare institution.


In the article above, we have provided you with 7 reliable tips that will help you select the perfect locum tenens agency.