What Your Travel Nurse Recruiters Wants/Needs/Expects From You

By The Gypsy Nurse Staff

November 7, 2012

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What Your Travel Nurse Recruiter Wants/Needs/Expects From You

What your Travel Nurse Recruiter want/need/expect is an important aspect of building a relationship that is mutually beneficial.  Just as it’s important for our recruiters to know what we are looking for in them or expect out of them, it’s important to know what is important to them as a recruiter.

Do you know what your recruiter wants from you?  Do you know what qualities they feel they need in a travel nurse?  Are the recruiter’s expectations known to you?

I recently consulted with several Travel Nurse Staffing Companies and asked them to answer three simple questions for me in order to better understand how to help a recruiter build an effective working relationship.

I asked…

1. What do you WANT from a traveler?
2. What do you NEED from a traveler?
3. What do you Expect from a traveler?

I received some great responses from the recruitment side of things.  Some were expected and some were surprises.  Here are the recruiters that responded and their answers.

Triage Staffing
Jason Sagehorn, Recruiter at Triage Staffing
I think it comes down to a few things. While experience and work history will always play a role, hospitals are placing a greater emphasis on flexibility. The traveling nursing pool is stocked with qualified candidates and competition for jobs is fierce.  The more flexible a candidate can be, the better chance they have of landing positions, regardless of experience.

Another thing is communication, understanding, and team work. I kind of group these all together. I want nurses to feel that they are a part a team. As a Recruiter, my success is directly linked to the success of the RN.  Sitting in Omaha, NE, I do not know what is happening on a day-to-day basis with my travelers unless they communicate and keep me in the loop.  By communicating openly and often, we create “win-win” situations.

As a final thought, the traveling industry is changing and evolving as a whole. Vendor management companies, aka “Third Party Vendors” are gaining a larger share of hospital contracts than in the past.  The agencies are responsible for paying these “middle” vendors a fee, which in return affects how we can pay our travelers. While we are all motivated to maximize our earnings (staffing firms, recruiters, and RN’s), we have to keep the current market conditions in mind as we move forward.

If there’s one thing I’ve learned in 10-years of Recruiting, it’s that the medical staffing world is cyclical.  At the end of the day there will always be a demand for flexible, dependable, and professional traveling RN’s.

Freedom Healthcare Staffing
Crystal Lovato, Manager of Recruitment, Freedom Healthcare Staffing
My Top 10

1.     Honesty is the most important to me.
2.     Mutual respect of each other.
3.     An understanding that this is a team effort and we each do our part.
4.     Realistic expectations
5.     Honoring a commitment – If a traveler backs out of an assignment after accepting, there should be a good cause.
6.     Honor the rate/package negotiated upon submission – As a recruiter, I never renegotiate after offer.
7.     Good patient care
8.     Professionalism – Be a good representative of our agency
9.     Being cooperative with Quality Assurance
10.  Communication – If there is a question, issue, concern, I need to know asap.  I can’t fix what I’m not aware of.

TotalMed Staffing
Andy Wuebben, Senior Recruiter TotalMed Staffing
I want a traveler that is friendly, professional, and courteous. This is a working relationship so trust and honesty are the most important things to make a successful long term recruiter/nurse relationship work.

I need a traveler that has at least 1 year’s experience in whatever specialty they want to travel and preferably past travel experience. I also need them to be flexible and be able to open to helping the facility in whatever way possible.

I expect a traveler to be upfront and honest with me about what they have going on. We are working very hard and spending a lot of time to help locate job opportunities and an open line of communication and consistent updates if their situation changes are crucial to a successful relationship. The worst thing that can happen is for us to have someone submitted and push for a phone screen only to find out by the time our facility calls them they have accepted another position that we have no idea about.

 Beth Ann Turner, Senior Recruiter TotalMed Staffing
I want a traveler:

  • that communicates well and will return a phone call/text promptly.
  • who is open to getting to know their recruiter on a personal level
  • who isn’t afraid to try new places for a contract even if it isn’t their ‘perfect’ location.

I need a traveler:

  • to put their best foot forward on a new contract.

I expect a traveler:

  • to commit to deadlines on paperwork.
  • will show up to work on time and have reliable attendance.

Tom Horan, Recruiter TotalMed Staffing

I WANT a traveler that is open-minded and positive

I NEED a traveler that is reliable

I EXPECT a traveler to be honest about their needs/plans/etc

Donald Kinsey, Recruiter TotalMed Staffing
I WANT a traveler that is  motivated and energetic

I NEED a traveler that has experience, knowledge, and enthusiasm.

I EXPECT a traveler to be flexible.

Erin Penza, Recruiter TotalMed Staffing
I WANT a traveler that is hardworking

I NEED a traveler that has good communication skills

I EXPECT a traveler to be able to adapt to different situations at the hospital and be flexible

Jason Palleria, Senior Recruiter TotalMed Staffing
I WANT a traveler that is experienced and knows the ins and outs of travel.

I NEED a traveler that is reliable and does not need a lot of push to have items completed.

I EXPECT a traveler to use me as their main resource for ANYTHING!!!

Andrew Johnson, Recruiter TotalMed Staffing
I want a traveler that is energetic, motivated and enjoys their profession

I need a traveler that has at least 2 years of experience, past travel experience, and worked within their specialty in a clinical setting within the past year

I expect a traveler to keep an open line of communication with me, always letting me know if they have any concerns.

I want to thank the companies and recruiters that contributed to this post.  I feel that it’s important to have a mutually respectful relationship with your recruiter.  In addition to informing your recruiters what your wants/needs/expectations are, find out what your recruiters wants/needs/expects.

Recruiters reading this; feel free to post in the comments what your wants/needs/expectations are.  Gypsy nurses everywhere need to know…

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