NSW Health currently employs approximately 5,500 junior doctors at an annual cost of over $900 million, to provide direct clinical care of patients, under the supervision of senior doctors, in public hospital and health facilities within NSW. The majority of junior doctors are simultaneously engaged in postgraduate medical training and working in positions that meet the requirements for specialty training.

The recruitment of junior doctors, primarily undertaken through a bulk recruitment campaign, has a number of unique characteristics that differentiate it from other public sector recruitment activities. These include: high volumes of positions and applicants; tight timeframes; and multiple internal and external stakeholders.

By any measure, given these characteristics, the statewide JMO recruitment strategy represents an immensely complex and resource intensive undertaking.

Many of the features of the current NSW JMO recruitment strategy have been developed in an attempt to respond to the complexity derived by trying to balance the needs of multiple stakeholders with competing perspectives.

To ensure the strategy's long-term benefits and sustainability, the NSW Ministry of Health commissioned an independent review of the strategy.


The outcomes of the review are intended to improve recruitment practices so that they:

  • enable LHDs and local facilities to demonstrate recruitment and marketing leadership in attracting and retaining the best health professionals for NSW Health
  • support effective health professional selection and on-boarding, which promotes quality clinical services and appropriate risk management
  • incorporate fair policies and processes that are consistent with best practices and professional standards
  • are aligned with training requirements, to help build a robust health workforce for NSW communities.


Phase 1 - Diagnostic

Sep – Dec 2014

  • Review background material, primary source documents and data sets
  • Develop and test key assumptions underpinning the review
  • Undertake detailed process mapping, including a cost analysis of current recruitment practices and processes
  • Undertake a comparative analysis against interstate and international processes and models

Phase 1 was facilitated and supported by site visits and initial consultations with staff and applicants via interviews and surveys.

  • Identify challenges and potential risks
  • Make recommendations for change, with prioritisation

Phase 1 has been completed and the NSW J​unior Medical Officer Recruitment Strategy Review – Phase 1 Report​ is available.

Phase 2 - Solution Generation

Jun – Sep 2015

  • Conduct comprehensive internal and external engagement and consultations with a wide range of stakeholders
  • Address Phase 1 outcomes
  • Establish practical solutions for implementation

Determine practical and sustainable solutions, that will:

  • Support efficient service delivery
  • Assist in identifying required resources
  • Strengthen current systems and processes

Phase 2 has been completed and the NSW Junior Medical Officer Recruitment Strategy Review - Phase 2 Report​ is available.

Current as at: Friday 16 October 2015