(HealthDay News) — A defined process is necessary to help physicians hire the right staff for their practice, according to an article published July 24 in Medical Economics.

Before starting the search for candidates, practices should create a wish list of the qualities possessed by the perfect candidate. List separately skills that are teachable (e.g., scheduling, electronic health record entry) and skills that are not and will require specific previous experience.

According to Medical Economics, in advertising the position, cast a wide net. Spread the word internally, as well as on local electronic job boards, at local medical society chapters, and at community colleges or trade schools with medical assistant programs. Screen applicants with a phone call first, listening for communication skills. In-office interviews should include challenging role-play situations. Additionally, always check references.

According to the article, practices should, “in general, look for some successful experience in customer service-related jobs, experience with a variety of software applications (medical and commercial), and the ability to communicate clearly.”

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