Curious: New Nurse to Work Agency

  1. I am just curious to know how much exp should a RN have before embarking on agency nursing. I just got two calls today and wanted to know if 2 years student nurse exp and a little under a year RN exp qualifies me for agency work? The two agencies have reviewed my resume and think that I would be suitable. I just wonder if this is the norm to hire new RN's with little exp. The pay is good though with agencies.
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    About ladylikeRN

    Joined: Jan '08; Posts: 63; Likes: 27


  3. by   suzanne4
    Responded to your other post that was moved to the Agency Forum.

    Depends on how comfortable that you feel with your skill level, and they only count experince that you have after you passed the NCLEX exam.

    Agencies are interested in filling shifts and nothing more, they are not going to be looking out for you license in most cases.
  4. by   elkpark
    As Suzanne noted, agencies will happily sign you up and throw you to the wolves -- they are interested in their profits, not your professional growth and development (or any risks to your license). Facilities pay agencies a lot of $$$ for nurses, and, for the amount of money they're shelling out, they are expecting to get a seasoned pro who can walk in and do the job with minimal orientation.

    Do you feel that you are competent to walk into an unfamiliar setting and practice nursing independently, with little or no orientation and little or no assistance or supevision? Also, it's not uncommon that the facilities that are willing to pay the big bucks for agency personnel have to do so because working conditions are so bad that they can't keep permanent staff ... There are a number of recent threads about bad experiences that people have had with agencies (local and traveling); you may want to search and review them before you make a decision.

    Best wishes for whatever you decide.
  5. by   meriposa
    I myself have never worked agency but I did work for two years on a neuro med-surg floor that had a couple of agency nurses. They only provided two days of orientation on the floor and most days these poor nurses got the heaviest of assignments- alot of total care patients, at least one trach pt. (when the other RNs had none!!), and were worked to the bone. Some of the staff were friendly to them but others seemed to enjoy watching them suffer with their heavy workload. I am a skeptic and thats why I have always been leery of agency work despite how tempting the pay is...
    A friend of mine had worked as a med-surg nurse for 6 years and tried agency per diem and on her first day (which was only a four hour shift-) walked into someone who was non-responsive, the next pt. she saw had decannulated himself and the third person needed blood. That was her first and last day as a agency nurse, she said never again!! I would just make sure you do alot of homework on where you are going to be working and make sure you transition well into new settings, people,charting and expect the unexcepted until you know otherwise... Thats the best advice I can give you!! Good luck!!