Travel Nursing – are you ready?
Taking the leap into agency nursing can be a big change, especially for those planning to move from the security of a permanent role to the travel nurse lifestyle for the first time. It can be a scary decision, but if you’re doing it for the right reasons, with the right attitude, it can be one of the best choices you’ve ever made for your career, lifestyle and bank account (because let’s not ignore one of the best perks)!
To help you decide if you are ready to make the move, below are some key points to consider:
- Know what you want to do
Knowing why you are starting something is just as important as actually doing it. Taking the time to consider your goals may help to crystallize your decision:
- Do you want to earn a higher income?
- Have you been in your current role for a long time and feel like a change?
- Have a sense of adventure and want to get out of your comfort zone and challenge yourself?
- Do you want the opportunity to experience a different work environment or to serve a different segment of the community?
- Do you want the opportunity to build your CV at a faster pace than in a permanent role?
- Ensure its the right time
Becoming a travel nurse needs to make financial sense and match your life circumstances. Are you in the right place financially and emotionally to take that step? Have you thought through the pros and cons?
Everyone’s life circumstances are different, and your definition of what’s worth it will be different. It depends on your life priorities.
- Be sure you are clinically ready
Being comfortable nursing independently is essential as a travel nurse. When you arrive at a new facility, they will expect you to get to work. They will train you on their processes, but as far as your nursing skills are concerned, they need you to hit the ground running and contribute right away.
Do you have the expected skills and certifications a nurse working in your clinical area should have? Gaining as much valuable experience as you can beforehand and seeking out learning opportunities in your current role all help to prepare you for agency nursing. If you are a ward-based nurse, consider working on a nursing pool to vary and broaden your experience and to get used to stepping into new clinical environments. Speak with your recruitment consultant to find out what you can do now to maximise the opportunities available to you in future.
- Understand what is involved
Know some colleagues who have already experienced the travel nurse lifestyle? They are a great resource! Talk to them about their experiences. Have a look at other nurse’s stories online or look at joining nursing forums on Facebook to get a clearer picture of what agency nurse’s experience, both good and bad.
Take the time to clarify with us any questions you may have about agency contracting and how it all works. The more information you have about the process, the more confident you will feel about making your decision.
- Make sure your dreams match the reality
Agency contracts can be last minute, and your expectations may not match the market all the time. But your placement consultant will work hard for you. They know you will be relying on them for work, so be flexible and consider all the options they propose. That’s one of the great things about agency, a location you have never heard of may surprise you!
Is Travel Nursing worth it?
Travel nursing can open doors to exciting new life experiences. It’s a career path that gives you the chance to grow professionally and personally, and also gives you the power to fit your work life around things that are fulfilling to you.
Whatever your circumstance, travel nursing forces you to learn about yourself and once you are further along the journey, you will realise you are not the same person you were when you started.
Ask most agency nurses if you should give the lifestyle a try, and the vast majority would respond with absolutely.
Click HERE to begin your Travel Nursing career with Affinity Nursing!