Step #7: Research Travel Nurse Agencies - The Gypsy Nurse

By The Gypsy Nurse Staff

August 8, 2018

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Step #7: Research Travel Nurse Agencies

Find out How to Research Travel Nurse Agencies

Research Travel Nurse agencies
Photo by João Silas on Unsplash

There are several factors in determining what agencies to work with. As you research travel nurse agencies, keep in mind that you need an agency that you can trust, that has the benefits and services that you want/need and is willing to meet your  Deal-Breakers.

Get Travel Nurse Agency Referrals

Before you hit the phone; use Google, ask your travel nurse friends, and visit the Gypsy Nurse Facebook Network. It can take a good amount of time to research travel nurse agencies. Start early and don’t skip out on this important step.

Read Travel Nurse Agency Reviews

Read reviews, check the agencies websites. If you have completed a contract, make sure to fill out an agency review so that the next traveler will have up to date information.

Check our 2018 Agency Rankings

Best Travel Nurse Agencies 2018
Best Travel Nurse Agency Rankings

We’ve created the most comprehensive travel nursing agency evaluation ever, we hired two top independent market research firms to create and conduct a methodologically sound, quantitative survey of the travel nurse community.

Make Agency Contact

When you have a list of several companies that you want to pursue, then you can start making calls. If you have a specific recruiter that you want to contact make this clear on your initial contact with the agency. Make certain to note your referral reference. Many times, there are referral bonuses for referring a recruiter/agency.

It’s not recommend signing up with job boards as you will be bombarded with phone calls/emails from these sites. We recommend that you connect directly with the agencies that you are interested in after doing some individual research. The Gypsy Nurse Job Listings allow you to search and apply with ONLY the company that you are interested in!

Interviewing the Agency

When you interview travel nurse recruiters (Yes, YOU will interview THEM); it’s important to address your questions in the order of importance to you. If a company isn’t able to meet your deal-breakers, it probably isn’t worth your time or theirs to continue. Companies will be very vague and confusing on pay, make notes and jot down everything that they tell you and go over it after the conversation. It’s not a bad idea to ask a recruiter to email you the DETAILED pay information as well, if your confused. Travel nurse pay can be very confusing. Make sure you understand your pay and then you can diagnose your pay package more effectively.

EXPERT TIP:

VET YOUR CHOSEN COMPANY/RECRUITER VIA THE GYPSY NURSE NETWORK BY ASKING FOR SPECIFIC FEEDBACK ON THE AGENCY.

 

Research Travel Nurse Agencies – Interview the Agency

travel nurse checklist

Potential initial questions for the Travel Nurse Agency:

  • PAY
    • Explain your pay structure.
    • What is the Average Pay? Low/high amount for specialty. Based on location.
    • Missed shift penalties and ability to make up shift.
  • Benefits 
    • What benefits are offered? Health insurance, 401K, paid time off, holiday pay, overtime pay, bonus, sick time, travel reimbursement, license reimbursement, etc.
  • HOUSING
    • What options do you offer for Housing?
    • Does the agency offer furnished housing / stipend / both?
    • Here is where you will ask any housing details or options that you want.
    • Do you pay for parking? This is especially important in a large city i.e. San Francisco
    • How early can I move into my housing? How long at end of contract do I have to move out?
    • Will you provide pet-friendly housing?
  • CONTRACTS
    • Do they contract in all states, one state or in a particular area of the country?
    • Do they have ‘exclusive’ contracts? Where?
    • Do you allow extensions? What is the limit?
    • Are there penalties for early termination of contract?  What are they?
    • If you’re looking for a transitional contract that will turn into permanent, ask if there are penalties/or exclusion clauses for you or the hospital. Any non-compete clauses you should be aware of?
  • OTHER
    • What is the structure of the company? Does the recruiter do everything for you (housing, time sheets, contracts, etc) or are there separate people for these duties?
    • How often does the recruiter ‘check-in’ with you during contract?
    • Last but not least….make sure to ask about your specific Deal-Breakers and anything that is on your want’s/needs list.

This is not an exhaustive list of all the questions possible, just something to get you started.

Research Travel Nurse Agencies – Submission

It’s time now to narrow down your choices to about three companies that you want to fill out paperwork for and potentially work with. It is common in the travel nurse industry to have your profile with several companies. Once you have your choice of companies narrowed down, it’s time to submit your profile to them. If you find other companies after your submitted to these, you can always add more. Three is just my general number of companies that I work with at one time. It can get confusing if you work with much more than that.

Make sure that you take notes on what each company offers (or have them email the information to you) to refer back to.  If you are looking for a travel nurse recruiter, check the Gypsy Nurse Sponsor Companies to get started.

You can check out our new Job Listings to see if your chosen company has jobs in the area that you are interested in working. Job Listings can be sorted by location, company and specialty!! And, even better…when you apply for a position via TGN’s Job Listings your information will ONLY go out to the agency with the job listed and not placed on some random call list.


Are there other questions that are on your list when you research travel nurse agencies? Is there something that you want to ask but are not sure if it’s appropriate? Post your thoughts or questions in the comments below and I will try to address them.


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