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5 Ways to Win the Talent War

Updated: May 3

Despite the fact that the world just navigated through a global pandemic, skilled veterinary staff has never been in such high demand. As a result, today’s top candidates know they hold all the cards and can be as selective as they’d like when choosing where to work. So, how can you make your clinic stand out as the ideal workplace? Let’s explore five simple steps that you can start implementing right away to make your practice as attractive as possible to prospective employees.

Be Flexible

While it’s true that the veterinary industry thrives on consistency and reliability, that doesn’t mean you can’t offer your staff a little bit of leeway. With the option of working from home off the table for most roles, there are still things like flexible schedules and rotating shifts to consider. If the pandemic taught us anything, it was what’s truly most important in life. Show your staff you value their work-life balance by being creative and accommodating with your scheduling.

Be Engaging

The recruiting process is just as much about your candidates evaluating you and your practice as it is about you doing the same. To that end, you want to make as positive and impactful of an impression as possible throughout every step of the process. Keep those lines of communication open and make your candidates aware of what’s going on. Don’t leave them hanging for days or weeks at a time, wondering where things stand. Show them that you’re still interested and be respectful of their time.

Be Welcoming

If a candidate is considering multiple offers that are equal in terms of salary and benefits, what do you think will be their deciding factor on which practice to choose? Chances are, it’ll be the one where he or she feels the most welcome. To put your best foot forward, be sure that your practice culture is healthy. When the candidate arrives for an interview or tour, make sure the rest of the team is friendly and accommodating. Little things like this can go a long way toward bumping your offer to the top of the list.

Be Generous

While we all know that money isn’t everything, it does matter. To ensure that your offer stays in the mix, make sure you are being competitive with your proposed salary. And don’t forget about things like health insurance and other basic benefits. If you are a smaller practice and have a tight budget, consider creative perks, like the flexible schedule option we mentioned above. Be generous with what you offer to your staff and they will pay you back with hard work and loyalty.

Be Willing to Accept Help

Whether you’re simply too busy with all of your other duties to adequately devote time to recruiting, or you’ve been trying your best and are still coming up short, there are other options. For instance, enlisting the help of a professional – particularly one that specializes in staffing for the veterinary industry – can take that burden off your shoulders while ensuring that your team continues to grow and get stronger.

Keeping your practice staffed with highly qualified professionals can be challenging – especially given today’s competitive labor market. The five steps above should help you position your hospital as the destination of choice for eligible applicants.

Our Advice on Ways to Win the Talent War in 2024

What specific strategies can veterinary practices employ to identify and attract top talent?

Veterinary practices can attract top talent by implementing flexible work schedules and rotating shifts to appeal to candidates valuing work-life balance. Engaging actively with candidates throughout the recruitment process and maintaining open communication is crucial. Creating a welcoming practice culture, where team interactions are friendly and supportive, also makes a significant difference. Offering competitive salaries and creative perks, such as unique benefits for smaller practices, helps stand out in a crowded market. Additionally, leveraging professional recruitment services specialized in the veterinary industry can streamline the hiring process and ensure high-quality hires.

How can veterinary practices objectively assess their current workplace culture and identify areas for improvement?

Veterinary practices can objectively assess their workplace culture by conducting anonymous employee satisfaction surveys that gauge staff sentiments on various aspects of the work environment. Regularly reviewing turnover rates and exit interview data also provides insights into potential areas for improvement. Facilitating focus groups or town hall meetings can encourage open dialogue about the practice's culture. Additionally, implementing a 360-degree feedback system allows for a comprehensive view of interpersonal dynamics and management effectiveness. These strategies help identify strengths and weaknesses, guiding targeted efforts to enhance workplace culture effectively.

What are some innovative and non-traditional perks or benefits that veterinary practices can offer to differentiate themselves from competitors and attract top talent?

To differentiate themselves and attract top talent, veterinary practices can offer innovative perks such as wellness programs that include gym memberships or mental health days. Other unique benefits might include professional development opportunities like funding for advanced certifications or attending conferences. Practices could also provide pet care discounts and services, which hold high value for pet-owning employees. Flexible working arrangements, such as compressed workweeks or telecommuting for administrative roles, can also make a practice more appealing. Additionally, offering a stake in the practice or profit-sharing schemes can significantly boost employee loyalty and attract ambitious professionals.

What are the most common mistakes that veterinary practices make during the recruiting process, and how can these be avoided?

Common mistakes veterinary practices make during recruiting include inadequate communication, leading candidates to feel neglected or uninformed, and not accurately representing the job role or practice culture, which can cause new hire turnover. To avoid these pitfalls, practices should maintain frequent and transparent communication throughout the hiring process, ensuring candidates are kept updated regularly. Accurately describing the job responsibilities and the practice environment during interviews helps align expectations. Additionally, involving multiple team members in the hiring process can provide a well-rounded view of candidate fit, enhancing decision-making.

How can veterinary practices effectively measure and track the success of their recruiting efforts?

Veterinary practices can effectively measure and track the success of their recruiting efforts by implementing key performance indicators (KPIs) such as time-to-hire, which tracks the duration from posting a job opening to signing a new hire, and quality-of-hire, which assesses new employee performance and retention over time. Additionally, candidate satisfaction scores gathered through post-interview surveys can provide insights into the recruitment process efficiency and candidate experience. Monitoring the source of hire also helps in identifying the most effective recruiting channels. Regularly reviewing these metrics allows practices to refine their recruitment strategies, ensuring they attract and retain top talent efficiently.

For more practice management tips, tricks, and expert advice, bookmark the DVMelite blog and check back often for fresh content.

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