First Choice Nurses provided this article.
When it comes to travel nursing and getting hired on with a company, the process should be pretty straightforward, right? Sometimes this is not the case, and nurses can fall victim to scams by providing their social security number or banking information. So, how does a prospective travel clinician avoid getting scammed by these quotes, unquote recruiters? Use extreme caution, do your research, don’t believe everything you see online, and resist the temptation to act quickly.
First things first, use extreme caution!
NEVER, EVER send your information or credentials blindly. Recruiters will ask for your basic information & credentials that, include your phone number, email, resume, nursing license, BLS certification, Tuberculosis screenings, immunizations, etc., to build a submission packet for the contract you’re interested in being placed. They request these items to verify & ensure you meet the standards and requirements set by the facility/hospital. For most submissions with any company, they will also require a copy of your driver’s license and social security card. Oftentimes this information is not needed until the recruiter has collected everything else for the submission and is ready to actually submit you to the contract.
The reason your driver’s license and social security card/number are needed is so that the hospital/facility can verify in their database if you’re a previous employee and eligible to return as contingent staff. The driver’s license & social security card are also needed to verify your identity when completing the government I-9 form during the final steps of the hiring process. However, this is where you’ll need to be careful and use your judgment. Once an individual has your social security number, they can do anything with this information.
Recruiters should NEVER ask for your banking information, either. This information is usually acquired later in the hiring process from the payroll department, not the recruiters. If a recruiter is asking for your bank account information or a voided check for direct deposit, this is most likely a scam.
Second, do your research and don’t believe everything you see online.
Recruiters use social media and job board platforms to advertise contracts and opportunities they have. This is a playground for scammers as well. Scammers will mimic other companies using official seals, logos, & even websites to attract people into their scam.
If you feel uncomfortable sending anything to a recruiter, like your social security card/number, you should not do so without verifying that the person on the other end works for a legitimate staffing company. A simple google search of the company that they claim to work for can let you know if the company is legitimate. You can take it a step further and call that company and ask to speak to the recruiter. It’s also a good practice to read any reviews for any company that you’re considering working with. If a previous employee had a great or terrible experience, there is most likely a review about their interaction with the company.
When researching any company, ask yourself: Do they have a website? Do they have a verifiable phone number & address? What do the reviews say about the company? Are there any pictures of the company’s building with its name on it? What kinds of photos are shown by the company? The company might also have a social media page that you can cross-reference and see if the information is the same as it is on their google search page. Most times, pictures from a company’s social media page will coincide with the information on any internet search.
Finally, resist the temptation to act quickly and go in blindly.
If you feel pressured in any way, use caution. Yes, recruiters want to place you as quickly as possible, and you want to get to work as quickly as possible. This can be achieved without vulnerability. Shady actors typically try to make you think something is scarce or that a contract is about to be filled. While sometimes this may be true, keep in mind that most contracts are revolving and not one-and-done. The contract you want may be filled tomorrow, but another one that’s similar, if not the same, will come available again sooner rather than later. Always know your options and think it through before making any decision.
Our job board is a great place to search for your next travel nurse assignment. We have you covered with our housing page if housing is an issue. You can search for what you are looking for.