If you’re thinking of becoming a traveling nurse, you may be wondering how to make yourself as attractive to a travel staffing recruiter as possible. You may, in fact, be asking yourself “What a does a recruiter want?”
Read below for some insight.
- A travel nurse recruiter wants someone with at least one or – preferably – two years of professional nursing experience behind him or her. Recruiters find travelers for healthcare facilities and hospitals who are desperate for staff. The recruiter’s clients need someone who can come into a department and be effective pretty much immediately.
- The recruiter wants someone who can get along with just about anyone. Not just “patients, doctors and other healthcare professionals of all levels” but patients, and doctors and healthcare professionals who grew up in, and who live in, circumstances vastly different from your own. People who live in different parts of the country can have greatly different ways of experiencing the world. In addition, recruiters want nurses who can work with patients who live in poverty as well as those who are well to do.
- Recruiters are looking for nurses who are flexible. While most assignments provide at least two weeks before you need to be on-site, if a nurse proves he or she can take on assignments that have a shorter lead-time, the nurse may become the recruiter’s go-to person in a pinch. Emergencies do happen: people who accepted an assignment get sick on assignment and need to leave. A hospital thought it needed just one traveler for the NICU but calls three days before the assignment is to start to let the recruiter know it needs two or even three. While no one expects a traveler to drop everything for every assignment, the more flexible you can be when it comes to your availability, the better.
- Travel recruiters are looking for nurses who understand how important it is to keep his or her obligations. That is, if you accept an assignment, you need to show up for it. Recruiters know that emergencies do happen, but you need to be sure that you communicate these emergencies as soon as possible to a recruiter, especially if the emergency is such that you won’t be able to start or complete the assignment. In addition, recruiters are looking for nurses who won’t accept an assignment and then turn it down because another nurse travel service offered you one that you believe to be better. That’s completely unprofessional.
- Recruiters are looking for nurses who take their jobs seriously – but they don’t take themselves seriously at all. Travel staffing services need hard workers with a sense of humor because assignments – just like life – rarely go as planned.