Red Flags: Recruiter (and Travel Nurse) Red Flags

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By Triage Healthcare Staffing

August 15, 2022



Recruiter (and Travel Nurse) Red Flags

Triage Healthcare Staffing provided this article.

Looking for an allied or travel nurse recruiter or planning on taking your first travel assignment? Before you commit to a recruiter, check out these recruiter red flags, so you know which recruiters to avoid. But, because the recruiter/traveler relationship goes both ways, check yourself for red flags you might be throwing up too.

Recruiter Red Flag: Not Understanding You Work with Different Recruiters

Good recruiters understand that this is a competitive market—for both recruiters looking for travelers and travelers looking for jobs. Most recruiters understand that travelers have a couple of recruiters searching for jobs. Although it’s natural that a recruiter wants to be your one and only, they should be understanding when they find out they’re not. This is especially true if you’re looking for an assignment in a coveted area or one where the company doesn’t have a lot of contracts. If a recruiter asks you to sign an “exclusivity clause,” consider running far away because this recruiter is only looking out for himself.

If you are working with more than one recruiter, don’t hide it because this can actually make it harder to find a job. While it might seem like a great idea to double your chances by having two companies submit you for the same job, that isn’t the way things work. If you have two recruiters submit your resume for the same job, both will get rejected automatically. Hospitals don’t want to waste time figuring out which application was first to determine which recruiter gets the credit, so they reject them both, leaving you without a job. For this reason alone, it’s great to be upfront with your recruiters about where you’re submitted and by who.

job board

Traveler Red Flag: Social Media Negativity

It’s common job searching advice to lock down your social profiles, but that’s not enough when you’re looking for an allied or travel nurse job. If you’re in any travel Facebook groups, like The Gypsy Nurse’s group, know that there are definitely recruiters in those groups. Remember that anyone on social media can take a screenshot of a post in a group and spread it around, so before you talk negatively about a recruiter, a company, or a facility, understand that these groups aren’t quite as private as you might think.

This doesn’t mean you can’t be honest when you have feedback about a facility. Just realize that social media may not be the best venue for your complaints. Basically, if you wouldn’t say it to someone in person, don’t put it in writing on social media.

Recruiter Red Flag: Not Showing a Pay Rate Up Front

No one should work for free. While healthcare travelers have lots of different reasons for traveling, the money sure doesn’t hurt. If a recruiter is shifty when you ask about the pay rate or gives you a vague answer to your questions about pay, keep looking. Good recruiters will give you all the information up front instead of hiding details until after you’ve signed a contract.

When you do get that pay rate, understand that it’s possible that it doesn’t match what you’ll see every week. This isn’t because of any shadiness by your recruiter, though. The number of hours you work each week may vary. Different states have different tax rates, and a recruiter can’t know your exact situation—they’re recruiters, not accountants. Plus, things like 401k deductions, whether you have single or family coverage for health insurance, or HSA deductions can all affect the amount that’s actually deposited each week.

Traveler Red Flag: Being Hard to Communicate With

A good recruiter/traveler relationship starts with good communication. We know—most travelers want to communicate solely by text message because it’s fast and convenient, but a lot of details can be ironed out with a 10-minute phone call, especially if you’re beginning a new relationship. Taking this time up front can help ensure your recruiter knows exactly what’s important to you so they’ll be able to start on your job search immediately, rather than waiting until you’re free to answer questions one at a time.

Doing this also means that your recruiter will know what’s most important to you. For instance, if you prefer an assignment in Seattle, but the recruiter has something elsewhere in Washington that pays more, your recruiter can find out what’s a real requirement and what you consider just nice to have. So next time you get a phone call from a recruiter, consider picking up the phone.

Recruiter Red Flag: Not Being Honest About a Facility

There’s no perfect job, and anyone who tries to sell you on a picture-perfect facility isn’t being honest. Everywhere, even the best facilities, has a few warts. Maybe parking is far away. Maybe the hospital requires a specific color of scrubs that you’ll never need again. Maybe the pay seems great, but housing is expensive and hard to find. If a recruiter paints a 100% rosy picture, dig deeper.

Your recruiter should know if the assignment they’re sending you on has a few bumps along the way and should be upfront about what they know about the facility or the unit. Good recruiters won’t try to sell you on a “paid vacation.” What kind of “paid vacation” comes with a 36 or 48-hour work week attached to it?

If you’re looking for an allied or travel nurse gig, look for an agency that’s committed to treating you with candor and honesty. Triage Staffing pays attention to your wants and needs and works around them—not the other way around. To connect with a Triage recruiter, apply for a travel nurse job on the Triage website.

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.

If you are a new traveler or looking into becoming a Travel Nurse:

Travel Nurse Guide: Step by Step

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