Travel nursing is a demanding profession that requires nurses to travel across different regions in the US. Travel nurse assignments can be short-term and long-term depending on the requirements of the healthcare facility. Typically, travel nurse assignments can range from 13 weeks to 26 weeks and can get extended. Travel nursing provides opportunities to explore different cities but makes nurses test themselves in challenging working conditions. Subsequently, this helps in achieving professional growth and development.
According to statistics, currently, there are 1.7 million travel nurses employed in the US. Out of this group, 54 percent of these travellers will be looking for another assignment within the same year. Travel nursing is all about that next gig. This includes may mean relying on traditional staffing agencies that have limited job options, inadequate credentialing support, and a lack of transparency. And then there are travel nurses who use talent marketplaces like SkillGigs, who are solving the top gig equation, quickly. SkillGigs offers access to a wide range of opportunities, verified job listings, pay transparency and a streamlined application process.
To thrive in today’s job market, travel nurses are increasingly turning to talent marketplaces like SkillGigs for maximum opportunities. Travel nurses trust SkillGigs because they get a dedicated relationship manager who helps them every step of the way. Furthermore, SkillGigs was named in the list of the top 100 largest healthcare staffing firms in the USA. Also, it was listed 68 in the list of largest travel nurse staffing firms according to SIA annual rankings.
In this guide, we will list the necessary steps to become a travel nurse. However, we will also list the steps that travel nurses registered on SkillGigs must follow to get high-quality gigs.
Get a nursing degree
To become a travel nurse, you must complete a nursing program and earn a nursing degree. You can choose between a diploma program, an associate degree in nursing (ADN), or a Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN). A BSN degree may offer more opportunities and higher earning potential.
Get nursing licensure
You need to become a licensed registered nurse (RN) to work as a travel nurse. Generally, you will need to pass the National Council Licensure Examination for Registered Nurses (NCLEX-RN). So, after getting your degree, you must apply for the NCLEX-RN exam. Subsequently, you can apply for a state registered nurse license by submitting your nursing school transcripts and a fingerprint check.
After getting clearance from the state board and passing your NCLEX-RN exam you earn your RN license. Moreover, RN licenses are state specific so you may need to apply for a specific license in each state of practice, especially in travel nursing. Alternatively, travel nurses can apply for the Enhanced Nursing Licensure Compact (eNLC) which is a multi-state nursing license that allows nurses to work in their home state and other participating states.
Gain nursing experience
Most travel nurses require a minimum of one to two years of clinical experience as an RN. This experience helps you develop the skills and knowledge necessary to handle different working conditions and patients across healthcare systems.
After getting your degree, license, and some experience, you will be looking for job offers. You can opt for traditional staffing agencies that use recruiters to actively source and screen candidates on behalf of employers. Or, you can use talent marketplaces like SkillGigs, which uses expert-matching technology to help healthcare professionals get personalized job openings every day. With each response, SkillGigs AI technology learns more about your preferences to offer even more specific matches.
Here are the steps you must follow to become an expert SkillGigs travel nurse.
Easy sign-up process
Enter your personal information and professional history. Once you sign up, you must create your very first skill listing. Choose travel nurses as your job title and enter your location preferences. Also, you can determine your own value and set your desired salary and hourly rate.
Upon completing your skill listing, you will receive bids from interested recruiters. Feel free to ask them for clarification using the inbox tab on the platform as you review these gig opportunities.
Click here to learn all about the bidding feature on SkillGigs
Intrigued by a bid? Make sure to read it in full, especially the pay rate. If you want to change something, you can adjust the bid. Click ‘Interested’ to start further discussions. Again, this does not commit you to the job, just shows you are open to learning more.
Introduction to your market manager
After expressing interest in a bid, you will meet your market manager or healthcare relationship manager, a liaison between you and the hiring facility. They will answer your questions and aid you in securing your ideal gig.
Once you express interest, SkillGigs Market Managers will request any missing documents – a key step for a seamless job application process.
Click here to read an exciting interview with a SkillGigs travel nurse.
Submission to the hiring manager
Post document review, the recruiter presents your profile to the hiring manager, initiating the interview process.
Finalizing job offer
Successful interviews could lead to potential offers. If you opt to accept, you will receive a formal offer and contract to sign.
Once you accept an offer as a contract travel nurse, we take you through our thorough onboarding process. An onboarding and credentialing specialist will reach out to you within 24 hours of the signed contract, providing you with an onboarding checklist.
Health checks and drug screening
The healthcare facility requires you to submit health documents and lab reports. You must complete the drug test within 72 hours of receiving the lab authorization.
You constantly communicate with your onboarding/credentialing specialist, who will ensure you have completed all necessary compliance items.
Paychex, our third-party vendor, will email you a link to set up your account for payroll, benefits, and yearly W-2 documents.
Start your assignment
Once you complete all items on your onboarding, you get final clearance to start your new assignment. Make sure to check out our post on the “Ultimate Packing List” for SkillGigs travel nurses.
Interview with a SkillGigs Travel Nurse: Argel
Travel nurses are always looking for new gigs and assignments as soon as the last one is over. Don’t just take our word on it. Check out the interview we had sitting down with a long-term SkillGigs travel nurse, Argel.
Talent marketplaces like SkillGigs provide you with countless job opportunities based on your preferences. Furthermore, if you regularly update your work history and other profile details, you appear active to employers. Also, our AI-based system will keep you at the top for new travel nurse gigs. Check out our exclusive page created for travel nurses.
If you are new to SkillGigs, then sign up — it is free. It will be your opportunity to see top travel nursing opportunities currently available to help you get to the next level of success.