You may be starting your career as a nurse or you may have already been in the field for several years. Irrespective of what the case is, getting the job that is right for you could be a tough task.
However, nursing offers anyone that chooses this career path several options, and they aren’t limited to environment and specialties. A nurse can also determine how much work they want to do. They can decide to work either part-time or full-time or even as needed in several health facilities. Working with an RN staffing agency can make this happen.
As a nurse, if you decide to work for or with an agency, you can choose to do shifts or short-terms that will suit your schedule. That is to say, you can even be a full-time nurse, and pick shifts through a staffing agency to either make extra money or get more skills.
While this may sound quite juicy, just like everything, there are two sides to it. Working for an agency comes with its pros and cons. Therefore, in this article, we will be discussing some of these major advantages and disadvantages to help you decide if it is the right path for you.
Advantages of Working for an RN Staffing Agency
Below are some of the major advantages of working for an agency:
1. Great Pay
If you work per diem (per day), you would be paid a better hourly pay than those who are full-time nurses. This is often because full-time nurses’ employers aren’t required to give benefits.
So, if you need urgent extra cash, this may just be the thing for you as the agencies often offer fast payment options. They often pay at the end of the shift or some minutes after.
2. Less Stress
Working in any place often comes with its stress. You would have to battle with workplace politics if you decide to do full-time in a facility. This is eliminated when you are a nurse working with an agency.
All you have to do is come to the facility, do your job, get paid, and leave. There is no need to get involved with interpersonal relationships with patients, coworkers that will cause stress for you.
As a nurse working per diem, you will always maintain a neutral territory. If you do not like a facility, then you can even choose not to go there again.
3. Flexible Schedule
This is perhaps one of the biggest advantages of working for an agency. If you don’t know how great a flexible schedule is, visit here to learn some of its benefits. With an agency, you can take any time you want off. A day, a week, two weeks, just name it.
What’s more, you can even change environments if you wish to. These agencies often work with several facilities and based on how big they are, they may be associated with facilities far away to help you change your environment.
4. Chance to Diversify
This is the right pick for anyone who loves to learn new skills. Since you would move around, you will have the chance to gather skills from several health care facilities. This would help you diversify your skills.
Disadvantages of Working for an RN Staffing Agency
Below are some of the major disadvantages of working for an agency:
1. Paycheck isn’t guaranteed
When you do not work, you do not get paid. There is nothing like getting paid when you are on break. This is because you aren’t being paid a salary but you are paid per job or shift you do.
2. Less Predictable
When you have a normal full-time job, you are assured of your routine. You know what to expect. But this isn’t the case with an agency: You can’t predict or be sure of your shifts.
If you won’t feel comfortable with an unstructured work pattern, then a full-time job may be preferable.
3. A Lot of First Days
First days are sometimes the most frightening days anywhere. You don’t know what to expect, so you would naturally be all nervous. A nurse that works with an agency will have a lot of first days and may likely experience these jitters every day.
You would have to learn everything about a new facility every time from the simplest of things like where the supplies are kept to more complex things like the facility’s work culture.
However, you may be lucky to get similar shifts in the same health care facility. Also, after a while, you may get so used to the numerous first days that it may stop bothering you.
4. You May Be Seen As an Outsider
The nurses in the facility may consider you an outsider. They won’t know your personality or your skillset, you may spend your shift trying to show this to them. The doctors may also want to work with nurses they already know rather than someone new.
5. Retirement and Benefits are on you
If you decide to work full-time, you have several retirement and benefits options open to you. You can visit https://www.irs.gov/retirement-plans/plan-sponsor/types-of-retirement-plans to learn about some retirement plans. Sadly, most times, these options aren’t open to per diem nurses. Your insurance will be yours to make, and this may end up being more costly.
Furthermore, your retirement plan will also be developed by you.
Whether or not you want to be a nurse working for an agency is your choice to make. We have discussed some of the pros and cons of this career option to help you make a great choice.