Your specialty can affect your total compensation as some hospitals place a greater value on nurses with more experience, more certifications or who have experience in high demand positions. Whether you’re interested in gaining experience in a particular specialty or expanding your current skill set, traveling may be a smart way to develop as a nurse. Most agencies and hospitals want travel nurses to have at least one year of experience after passing their board certifications. However, once that year is under your belt, travel nursing may be a way to learn a new set of skills, expand your clinical knowledge and expertise. This kind of nursing will allow you to greater cultural understanding while working in different geographical areas.
The hospital, clinic, or another medical facility will determine the type of experience open to the travel nurse. However, there are many locations across the country that are experiencing a nursing shortage so your duties may vary depending upon the assignment you accept and the individual needs of your patients. Travel nurses are called upon to contribute to the larger medical facility’s mission but will also be called upon to remain flexible and take the initiative to improve and expand their experience.
For instance, a nurse may start her career as a general pediatric nurse in a general unit. With experience floating to oncology units or Pediatric Intensive Care, the nurse may be able to accept assignments in different areas of practice when the facility is open to the possibility. Nurses with experience in a Telemetry unit may wish to accept an assignment as an intensive care unit nurse or even in the cath lab. Floating to these units while working in a permanent position, or accepting a floating assignment as a travel nurse, makes this transition smoother and opens the door to greater experiences and growth in your career.
Professional growth also leads to higher compensation, both from the facility and from some agencies. Of the three factors that influence the travel nurses pay, the specialty in which they practice is one. The geographical location of the assignment most heavily influences pay as the rate is often a reflection of the cost of living in the area. However, the specialty in which you practice and the credentials you hold in that field increase your ability to earn a more lucrative salary. If you’re willing to work the night shift or are more than happy to float to other units, many facilities are also willing to pay you more.
Each of these opportunities allows you the ability to develop new skills, learn new techniques and grow your network of individuals who may be able to boost your career or may become your new best friend. It’s important to take the opportunity as you’re traveling to try different specialties, gain more experience and spread your wings. These growth opportunities only develop your professional life and offer you a greater chance for an increase in compensation and the ability to choose sought-after positions in exciting locations.
At Amare Medical Staffing, we are interested in your professional growth and in helping you develop greater experiences. This helps us place you in assignments that fit your needs and the needs of the hospitals and other medical facilities. Contact one of our professional recruiters today and let’s get started finding your next adventure.