I started Agency Nursing in Sept. after 13 years at a rural Iowa CAH hospital. I am having a blast. I wish I had made the jump sooner. I have found out what a rut I was in. I have worked Med/Surg and ER in a larger hospital, I have work Med/Surg at another CAH and this week I even tried some clinic nursing at a large clinic.
It has been such an eye opening experience, to go into a faculity and see all the different ways thing are done. Your savanger hunting abilities take affect very quickly.
Everywhere I have been has welcomed me and have been so appreciative that I was there to help. After leaving a position as DON, which is a thankless job and so stressful, I am getting "thank you for being here to help us out." I go home feeling very good about the job I have done.
The only drawback is, you are not sure how many hours you will have from week to week. I really hate to, but I am going to do a 13 week contract with guaranteed hours. A little more stable. We will see how that goes and I am hoping to do my first travel assignment towards the end of next year.
So, if you are planning on " jumping in". Do your research on the agencies, benefits, and wages in your area. Then just "do it". If it doesn't work out, you will probably have no problem going back to staff nursing with the shortage.
I would be very interested in hearing any stories from agency nurses just starting out.