Are you just about to go out on your first assignment as a travel nurse? Read below for some tips on how to “survive” your first day and weeks on assignment.

Your recruiter will give you tons of information about the medical facility to which you’re assigned, as well as your new, temporary home and your apartment complex (if you’ve decided to let your travel nurse company find you living accommodations). Don’t be shy about asking questions. If the recruiter doesn’t know the answer, he or she can call the facility before you head out.

Just as with any new job, your first day on assignment more than likely will involve getting a tour of the hospital/medical facility as well as a more in-depth overview of your assignment department. You’ll meet your on-site manager as well as your colleagues. You’ll receive a detailed description and tour of your department’s “way of doing” things (such as charting), as well as where the supplies are kept, medical equipment locations, and which people to contact should you have questions, problems or concerns.

You’ll want to be sure to take a notebook or tablet/smartphone on which to take notes. Take plenty of them. Don’t be afraid to ask for clarification or to ask questions you feel haven’t yet been answered. A simple, small, pocket-sized notebook can be a lifesaver – you can jot down quick notes, phone numbers and passwords on the fly.

Talk to everyone on your floor. Introduce yourself. Your new colleagues will expect you to have lots of questions, so don’t be afraid to ask them. So long as you have a positive attitude no one should “mind” if you ask lots of questions.

Skip the “I’ve always done it this way,” or the “I think efficiency would be improved if we did it this way” conversations until at least a few weeks into your assignment. No one likes being told what do by the newbie; you’ll need to prove yourself to your new colleagues first. In fact, it’s a good idea to get a feel for your department even after you’ve been there awhile before making recommendations. You may feel you’re being helpful, but some departments aren’t amenable to an outsider (even one who’s going to be there an average of 13 weeks) telling them “what to do.”

Understand that you’re there to work. Travel nursing isn’t a vacation. Hospitals and other medical facilities have engaged your travel staffing service to find someone like you because the facility has an urgent need for your skills. You’re there to focus on your patients; make sure that patient focus is your top priority.

Are you flexible, outgoing and wishing to make a difference in your nursing career? Do you have bit of wanderlust, too? Then contact a recruiter at MedPro Healthcare Staffing. We have dozens upon dozens of healthcare and other medical facilities across the country eager to bring you onboard for a temporary assignment. Contact us today!