Whatever next? Staying in control of your travel nurse assignments

How successful travel nurses plan ahead.

Creating a personal roadmap is the foundation of your happy and fulfilling travel nurse journey. Success is all about knowing what your goals are and keeping your Wayward recruiter in the loop as they change and develop.

How soon is too soon to be thinking about what comes next?

Heading off on a new travel nursing assignment is exciting and just a little nerve-racking. There’s a lot to think about and quite a bit of preparation involved. Paperwork, housing, making sure you are prepared for the climate at your new destination – let’s face it, the US has a wide range of weather to choose from!

Even more so if this is your first assignment after a fully employed role. But don’t worry, your Wayward recruiter is right on board for you and we have your back all the way.

In all the flurry of organizing your journey, the goodbyes and hello’s, and the full-on experience of settling into a new hospital, it’s OK if your NEXT assignment is the last thing on your mind. We’re here to help you keep the work coming and learn to organize yourself so that each transition from job to job is smooth and just right for you. Give yourself a chance to get into the job you are doing, the people you meet and your destination. Meanwhile, you can be confident that the Wayward team is working hard to make sure you and all our travelling nurses have the pick of the best jobs out there.

How soon should you start the search for your next assignment?

This really depends on what you want to do next. So your first priority is to work out what that is and make sure you let us know so we can help you.

First consider your overall travel nursing strategy. This will very likely be an ongoing discussion between you and your Wayward Medical recruiter. Your goals and aspirations may well evolve and change over time based on your experiences in the field. You will want to think about your overall career strategy, your immediate priorities and whether or not you need a break. Balance all these factors to make a decision on whether to stay or move on somewhere else.

What if you want to stay on? Can I extend my contract?

What if you’d like to stay longer on your current assignment? It happens all the time. When an assignment really suits you,  you get on brilliantly with everyone, love the area and the work is exactly what you want, you may decide that it would be really great to stay on longer. Another common reason for requesting an extension is if you feel you are gaining valuable experience and new skills and would like to continue to build on that.  Of course, there are a lot of advantages to extending your stay:

  • You’ve got your state licenses already, so you don’t need to re-apply.
  • Accommodation is all sorted out – that’s another job you can put off for a while.
  • No need to get familiar with the facility, you can crack right on with patient care.
  • A better schedule with the hospital.
  • You’re having a great time and meeting excellent people.
  • You are enjoying the area.
  • Building more important career experience.

So if you would like to stay longer, how do you go about it? First of all, at the risk of repeating ourselves, let us know as soon as you can. About 4-6 weeks in is ideal. The hospital has had a chance to evaluate you and you are more likely to get a positive response. It also allows time to go to plan B if they can’t keep you. Some assignments have a limited shelf-life by nature, for instance, maternity leave cover. Other times the hospital just doesn’t have the budget. We’ll take it up with them and see what we can arrange. Quite often they are as pleased as you are to have you for a longer stay.

The important thing to remember is that this is your career and you are in control. The Wayward Medical recruitment team is always here to help you and answer questions. Together we can make travel nursing the best decision you’ve ever made.

Arrange a chat with a Wayward recruiter

We’ll help you to create a personal plan for success as a travel nurse, and make sure you know exactly what you can expect from us and when. Arrange a chat with one of our travel nursing experts to discuss your individual situation today: