Ask a Travel Nurse Question:
I am a new grad, licensed in Oct. 2012. I have RN OR experience and ACLS, EKG and CST certification. I contacted American Mobile and they told me to get back to them in October. I am interested in travel nursing but after reading the blogs, I’m a bit nervous. Will I find consistent work and dealings with integrity?
Ask a Travel Nurse Answer:
When American Mobile told you to get back with them in October, they were actually being optimistic. While you might have great credentialing, you still do not yet possess enough experience to begin as a travel nurse. In fact, many companies have now gone to requiring TWO years of experience before attempting to find you a position.
You have to understand that any travel company would LOVE to put you to work. However, they are not the ones calling the shots. The facilities that hire travelers are the ones dictating the amount of experience they wish to see. Some facilities will state “no first-time travelers” no matter how much experience you have.
So I’m not sure if you were put off by American Mobile’s response, but they were just being honest with you about the possibility of finding you work. I hear from many nurses who join a travel company, with only a year of nursing experience, and they are told, “Sure. It’s no problem. We’ll find you an assignment,” only to never hear from their recruiter again. The companies that convey how very difficult it will be with anything less than 18 months experience are simply being realistic.
When you have at least 18 months of experience, you can start to join companies and might even be able to find an assignment location that ranks high on your list of places to see. However, when first starting out, you need to be very flexible in the locations you will accept. Some travelers will take assignments in locations they have NO desire to see, simply to remove that “first-time traveler” label.
When you start looking at companies, research them on the web and in the travel nursing forums (allnurses.com, ultimatenurse.com, or the Delphi Forums group called Travel Nurses and Therapist). If you’d like some help in getting on board with some great recruiters at the companies I use and trust for my travel needs, feel free to email me at email@example.com
I hope this helps.