The past few weeks we have been discussing some ways to ensure time off during the Holiday season. This week we’ll look at a few final ways to get time off during the Holidays.
One final option you might have is to request the time off prior to starting your assignment. Now not every facility will agree to this, but it depends mostly on your approach.
Let’s say you were offered an assignment starting in mid-November. You might be able to say, “Yes, I would like to accept the contract, but I have already planned time off to spend with my family during Christmas” (or Thanksgiving, or whenever). Then, it would be the facility’s job to decide whether or not this was a deal breaker.
Now if you do take this approach, be aware that some facilities will not go for this and might even rescind an offer. However, if it is approached right, it’s rare that you will encounter problems.
The best time to mention that you need specific time off is in the interview before the hospital makes an offer. This way, you can often feel them out about the possibility of having that time off. If you mention it and their response is “that’s no problem at all”, then you are good. If you mention it and they hesitate and say something like, “I don’t know if that would be possible”, then you have to decide how important it is to you.
If you do have an agreement with regard to any time off, always have it written into your contract.
The last way to get time off during the Holidays is to work a half shift with someone. A few people in my unit have agreed to work different parts of Christmas day. One person will cover from 7AM to 1PM and then go home to have Christmas with their family, and the other has Christmas morning with their family and comes in to cover from 1PM to 7PM. Shifts that are “halved” like this often need to be approved by the manager or staffing office, so plan ahead.