The Great Disconnect | The Gap Between Employer and Candidate Expectations

The Great Disconnect

While the era of the Great Resignation may have concluded, a new trend is emerging in the Personalized Medicine labor market—it’s what we’re calling the Great Disconnect. The past year there’s been a noticeable difference between what employers are offering vs what employees are seeking in terms of greater flexibility in their work arrangements, i.e., the ability to work remotely, or a hybrid schedule.

The pandemic forced a transition to remote work, and functional medicine practitioners adapted to this change, catering to patients seeking comprehensive health solutions virtually. Unlike traditional acute care visits, patients in this field pursue a holistic approach to address the root causes of illness for sustained well-being and longevity. Technologies have streamlined lab tests and supplement orders to support tailored treatment plans.  And Telehealth can be beneficial in providing accessibility to individuals seeking optimal health solutions.

The allure of remote work has reshaped clinicians’ preferences, with many appreciating the flexibility and improved quality of life associated with remote schedules. The demand for functional medicine’s Telehealth capabilities has led to a surge in clinicians seeking such opportunities.

After three years of increasing remote work or flexible work options, clinicians’ preferences naturally shifted towards searching for remote positions. In fact, on the Integrated Connections job board, remote positions regularly receive the most clicks and highest volume of applicants.

Insights from our candidate interviews the past year reveal a prevalent desire among candidates for remote, hybrid, or reduced schedules. Encouragingly, many clients we recruit for are embracing hybrid or reduced schedules, and our sourcing communications explicitly mention if these opportunities offer flexibility.

Employers recognize the appeal of flexible schedules in attracting and retaining top talent, as well as preventing burnout, which is crucial in supporting the clinicians who are treating complex medical conditions.

Some clients treating complex chronic illnesses find that periodic in-person visits enhance patient adherence to treatment plans. And many offer modalities that require in person visits, such as acupuncture, IV’s, red light therapy, HBOT, etc.

One of our clients that was fully remote since 2020 is now looking for office space to accommodate the 30% of their patient panel requesting in-person consultations periodically.

Moreover, clients express a preference for in-person mentorship and training for new clinicians to facilitate hands-on experiences in patient-provider interactions.

Looking ahead to 2024, a shift towards equilibrium is apparent—maybe it will be the year of the Great Connect. Patients continue to seek Personalized Medicine with both onsite and remote practices.  Employers are taking the reins in determining schedules that align with patient needs and business requirements. Candidates acknowledge that effectively treating complex medical cases remotely necessitates dedicated in-person training with patients.

The pendulum is poised to find balance in the intersection of flexibility and the irreplaceable value of in-person connections.