Medely provided this article.
A new travel assignment means big changes for any travel nurse or allied professional—new responsibilities, a new work environment, a new community, new place to call home. Before you commit, get the information you need to feel confident you’ll enjoy the travel nursing assignment and finish it with satisfaction and enthusiasm to keep going.
Lots of travel nurses and allied pros are attracted by the financial incentives since the rates they earn at a medical facility are typically higher than staff nurses. But high pay isn’t the only thing that matters. Many professionals choose travel nursing jobs to gain experience, upgrade skills, work in rural environments, or reclaim control of their personal and professional lives. Or they just want to choose a winter assignment in a new part of the country.
What goals and interests drive you to be a travel nurse—and does this assignment match? Here are 24 common travel nurse interview questions that Medely often recommends to healthcare professionals before they meet with a hiring manager.
Travel nurse interview questions to ask during your interviews:
Get to know the community.
It’s hard to focus on work when your living arrangements are in disarray, and your support network is non-existent. Before you pack the car and go cross-country, your interview with the hiring manager is a great opportunity to get a local’s perspective and insights.
- What is the community like? For example, is it a good fit if you have a family, love the arts, or like to spend your downtime outdoors?
- Is it hard to find housing nearby? What neighborhoods would they recommend?
- What types of activities are popular this time of year?
- What kind of weather should you prepare for?
- What popular apps do locals use to find events, meet people, or buy used items?
- Is there anything that tends to surprise people who are new to the area?
You’ll also want to ask about the cost of living. Rent may not be top-of-mind since travel nursing agencies often arrange accommodations or offer a housing stipend to pay for private housing or a hotel. However, the impact of high grocery or entertainment costs can skewer your budget if you aren’t prepared.
Your travel nursing assignment contract should clearly explain your responsibilities and expectations for you as well as the healthcare facility and the travel nursing agency you’re working with. However, since we’re talking about your day-to-day work, make sure you’re clear about the things that are most important to you.
- How many hours can you expect to work per week?
- What will your role be, and what types of cases will you be working with?
- What is the medical facility’s standard nurse-to-patient ratio?
- What’s the orientation process?
- Will you need to attend a shift with Employee Health before starting?
- Are there any modules or online training materials that need to be completed before starting?
- Do you need to book any extra credential requirements?
- What are the COVID-19 vaccine requirements?
Ask about the healthcare facility’s operations.
When you work somewhere for a month or more—the most common travel assignments last for 13 weeks—you want it to be a workplace where you can have an impact on patient care and feel supported along the way. Ask questions to gain a better understanding of how the department operates as well as the amenities available.
- What is the parking situation? Is it available for free or at a cost? How far away is it?
- What are the uniform requirements? Are scrubs provided?
- Is there a cafeteria or kitchen available for meals?
- What is the facility’s policy for breaks? And do nurses typically take their breaks?
- How is the scheduling done?
- Are travelers often floated? If so, to what units?
Make sure your requirements are covered.
Hopefully, you feel positive about everything you’ve learned about the travel nursing assignment so far! The last topic is to talk logistics—to confirm the details that fit your particular needs so you can avoid surprises.
- What start date works best for both of you? (Let the hiring manager know if you have any flexibility.)
- Are you able to take time off for pre-existing commitments?
- Are there other commitments that might impact your availability, such as another job?
Once you’ve worked through your list of questions and are satisfied that a particular assignment checks all the right boxes, prepare for your move and start looking forward to your first day!
We hope you found these travel nurse interview questions to ask during your interviews helpful. Do you have any other questions that should be asked? Comment them below.
Our job board is a great place to search for your next travel nurse assignment. If housing is an issue, we have you covered with our housing page. You can search for what you are looking for.