Hiring a Talented Medical Director: What You Should Know

A medical director is essential to any healthcare organization’s success. This is someone who has the proper clinical training and experience to lead a team of professionals and manage company resources. However, the qualifications that make a good doctor does not automatically make one a great leader. Having a weak leader can result in high turnover rates, culture confusion, and wasted time and resources. With a strong and effective medical director at the helm, staff are more empowered to perform in line with organizational goals. 

This article is a guide on hiring a medical director and includes some questions that interviewers can ask during the recruitment process. 

Why Hire a Medical Director?

A huge chunk of a medical director’s duties involve management and administration, rarely clinical and field work. Medical directors help protect the public, staff, and company by setting and enforcing policies that ensure the accurate delivery of healthcare services and proper resource allocation. With that said, hiring a medical director is necessary to:

  • Ensure that your business is providing safe and effective care to its patients
  • Provide guidance on clinical issues
  • Develop clinical protocols

Where To Find a Medical Director To Lead a Company

When hiring a medical director, you’ll want somebody who has experience with your type of organization. You may need to hire a new employee or give a current one more responsibility. Regardless if it is an internal or external hire, the ideal candidate should be an expert in both clinical and administrative areas of the business. 

Be sure to check references before hiring a new director. Even if you are considering an existing employee, ask for written recommendations from former supervisors, clients, and colleagues, including those from within the industry. 

How Much Will It Cost To Hire a Medical Director?

The price of hiring a medical director will depend on your organization’s needs. If you can hire someone who is already an expert, hiring will not cost you as much, especially if it’s done internally. However, if you are looking for someone with less experience or need to train them specifically for your business, hiring and onboarding could be more costly. 

The average base salary of a medical director in the United States is $294,000 per year, typically ranging from $268,000 to $323,000. A medical director’s pay depends on several factors, including experience, certifications, education, additional skills, and the number of years one has spent in their profession. 

A medical director also qualifies for bonuses, which average at $54,000 per year. These figures do not include benefits such as social security, healthcare, disability, 401K, pension, and paid time off. Overall, on average, a medical director would earn around $444,000 annually. 

Skills To Look For in a Great Medical Director

The essential skills that a medical director should have include: 

  • Being a licensed doctor with an M.D. or D.O. degree
  • Clinical experience (ideally, someone who has worked as a doctor for at least 10 years)
  • Proven knowledge in the healthcare industry
  • Excellent leadership and administrative skills
  • Great interpersonal and conflict-resolution skills
  • Experience in staff training
  • Ability to manage the company’s budget
  • Knowledge of developing and implementing quality control measures
hiring a medical director

How To Hire a Medical Director: 5 Interview Questions

You can spot the right medical director to lead your organization based on their interview. Here are some questions to ask a potential medical director to determine whether or not they are a good fit. 

1. Tell us about your experience leading teams of doctors in a medical establishment.

A medical director will likely be working across various disciplines and departments, so it’s important to gauge a candidate’s experience to understand their leadership style. The answer to this question will reflect the applicant’s background and capabilities as a leader and how they manage teams composed of professionals and specialists. 

2. How do you learn about the latest developments in healthcare?

Although the medical director will mostly be performing management and administrative work, it is important that they stay up to date with new developments in the field. The answer to this interview question will reveal information about their learning methods, any important contacts that can be leveraged later on, and their interest to incorporate these updates into your company’s systems moving forward. 

3. Share how you helped maintain communications between the staff, the department heads, and the organization’s board in your previous role.

This will demonstrate the candidate’s ability to work in both the staff and the company’s best interests. It is the medical director’s responsibility to ensure that all elements of the organization are operating smoothly. 

4. What are the responsibilities of a medical director, and why do you feel you are the best fit for this role?

This sounds like a no-brainer, but the response to this question will tell you whether or not the applicant understands what the job entails. The answer will also reflect whether or not the applicant has done their due research about the position and your company. 

5. Tell us about a challenge that you faced as a leader in your previous role and how you solved it. 

Mistakes are an inevitable part of being a leader, but what’s important is how a person responds to and deals with the challenge. This question will give you deep insight into the candidates crisis management strategies and how they use the resources around them to overcome these humps.

Hire a Medical Director With Strelcheck Healthcare Search

Hiring the right healthcare leadership can be complicated and time-consuming — wasting time and company resources on the wrong people just isn’t an option. You can make the process simpler but more targeted by partnering with a healthcare search firm that knows the industry inside and out.

At Strelcheck Healthcare Search, we adopt a meticulous nine-step process that focuses on delivering the results you need. We take care of interviews and site visits, in-depth candidate assessments, candidate interviews and tours, and other specific strategies to achieve an ideal match for your company. Before we begin the process, we take the time to fully understand your needs, and we will continue to communicate with you throughout the search to ensure that everything is on track.

Get in touch with the Strelcheck Healthcare Search team today to learn more about finding the best medical director for your organization.