Skip to content

Overcoming location concerns to staff a brand-new medical facility.

The Story

University of Virginia Health, affiliated with the University of Virginia as an academic health center, includes a series of clinics spanning central Virginia, plus a 500-bed primary hospital in Charlottesville, Virginia. UVA Health is widely recognized as a world-class facility. 

In anticipation of the September 2019 opening of their newly constructed $450 million health tower, UVA Health named AB&C its recruitment agency of record. Our mission? To help fill critical clinical and administrative positions for the leading-edge, 425,000-square-foot tower.


The Goal

We were charged with helping to recruit and hire 180 full-time registered nurses and 30 full-time allied health professionals—all during one of the lowest periods of unemployment in U.S. history and in the middle of a nationwide nursing shortage. 

While UVA Health offers the most advanced healthcare and pioneering research, the organization resides in a small college town that’s surrounded by a vast rural area in central Virginia. What’s more, the “Unite the Right Rally” that took place in August 2017 became national news, and Charlottesville became a symbol of political turbulence nationwide. AB&C considered those two crucial factors as we developed a new strategy.

Hire 180 full-time registered nurses during one of the lowest periods of unemployment in U.S. history and in the middle of a nationwide nursing shortage.

The Strategy

To achieve UVA Health’s recruitment goals, AB&C developed a strategy that would build awareness and attract talent from outside of UVA’s immediate location.  

For UVA to stand out from other organizations trying to hire similar talent, we developed a communications strategy that presented a unique employment value proposition to candidates: Expand your skills as we expand Virginia’s #1 hospital.  

Additionally, we developed a detailed 12-month media plan that identified candidates with a higher propensity for working for an organization like UVA Health. This plan used digital media (search engine marketing, postings, web banners, etc.); traditional media (journal advertising, print collateral, television, etc.); direct marketing (email and direct mail); and in-person events (conferences and meetings) to drive candidates to a campaign-specific website: The site’s content gave candidates all the information they needed to make an educated decision about joining UVA Health. Each landing page included direct recruiter contact options—while enabling us to track results and provide leadership with outstanding ROI tracking.  


The Success

Our campaign drove more than 50,000 visitors to the campaign landing page, delivered more than 1 million impressions monthly, built brand awareness and preference, and reached candidates from more than five states. A success, despite the unemployment climate and nursing shortage! 
With help from AB&C, UVA not only recruited and hired 354 nurses and allied health professionals but also expanded their healthcare services to residents in other counties. Their new tower, which opened successfully in September 2019, exceeded expectations, with sections added ahead of schedule. This facility played a crucial role in providing essential patient care in response to the COVID-19 pandemic.

states reached
nurses hired

Ready to engage the best talent?

Let us transform the way you attract, recruit and retain employees.

Whether you’re looking for help with a single hard-to-fill position or need to establish your EVP and employer brand, we’re your trusted recruitment marketing partner.