You wouldn’t play a game without knowing the players and the rules right? Don’t do it for your career either, travel nurses. I’m here to teach you all the important players that can be involved in each of your travel nurse assignments.
Why it matters: Knowing who controls which piece of your journey, what their limitations and motivations are, and knowing when to ask what questions (and to who) puts you in the driver’s seat. Buckle up, and get ready for a crash course in travel nursing!
The hospital or facility
Who they are: This is the player who has a need, the money, and is willing to pay extra for a traveler to fill their need. Everything else exists because of the hospital or facility paying. Staffing agencies call them their “clients”. They are paying customers to the staffing agency.
Who they are not: Your actual employer. They are your supervisors while you’re working but your employer is the staffing agency. They will be the ones who give you a performance review as well.
What they need and do: They are busy and short-handed. They need a travel nurse to fill a temporary need. They need a nurse that has proficient clinical skills, can treat patients with confidence right away with limited guidance and can be a team player for 13 weeks. They outsource the sourcing, hiring, and credentialing process to the staffing agency. They are the ones who interview different candidates that the agencies bring to them.
If they pick you, your agency will do the work to get your paperwork set up on behalf of the facility to have you ready to go on day one. It is the job of the facility to communicate to the staffing agency what their requirements are for you to start with them. Each facility will have different requirements for things like which drug test panel they will accept or what materials you need to review before day one.
Who they interact with the most: Account managers from staffing agencies or account managers from an MSP. (Not you, and not the recruiter).
How to impress them to get the job
- Your profile: The work history, skills checklist, and credentials that the agency sends to them.
- Your flexibility and availability: Are you agreeing to float? Do you have a lot of time-off requests?
- Your speed: How fast they get the profile, the faster you are the more likely to get the phone interview.
- You: The personality and clinical skills you display to them during the phone interview.
What motivates them: Hiring someone qualified who is flexible, clinically able to safely treat their patients right away, and a team player.
What frustrates them: Hiring a traveler that calls in sick a lot. Or refuses to be flexible to help if needs change while on assignment (within reason). Travelers who don’t get along with the team. Travelers who think they know better than everyone else because they came from a hospital that did things differently. You should know that travelers who cancel their contract for small reasons or without proper notice and travelers who display poor clinical skills may get blacklisted. This basically stops them from being hired or even considered for the whole hospital system in the future.
The other players
The facility isn’t the only one playing in this game. Check out the rest of these people (and not-people too) and how they’re a part of your travel nurse journey.
- Travel nurse agencies – Your employer & the middle man
- VMSs and MSPs – The robots you need to make happy
- The account manager – The hospital’s point of contact
- The recruiter – The most important player for the traveler experience
- The travel nurse – You! (The talent 😊)
Cheers to the travel nurse game being a win-win for everyone,