Seriously thinking of doing agency work. Pros and cons? - page 2

by LTCNS

8,195 Visits | 21 Comments

I'm a LPN with an extensive background in LTC and currently employed in a wound healing clinic. I'm at the point in my career and life that I would like to work when I choose as I am tired and in pain (Fibromyalgia,... Read More


  1. 0
    Quote from NedRN
    If you feel like your agency has your best interests at heart, you do not have a good business relationship.
    What do you mean?
  2. 0
    Quote from V-Neck T-Shirt

    What do you mean?
    I work for three agencies. I KNOW only one high ranking agency has "my back".
  3. 1
    With agency, you are your own boss. Mine seems to care because it wants me to stay working for them. So they accommodate n my requests without much hassle. Depends on how you look at it.
    I don't fully agree with the above statement. To an extent, sure.
    kshepherd likes this.
  4. 6
    Quote from rhellner57
    I work for Medical Solutions. I like the closeness I feel with them and my recruiter and feel that they have my best interest at heart.
    Quote from NedRN
    If you feel like your agency has your best interests at heart, you do not have a good business relationship.
    Quote from V-Neck T-Shirt
    What do you mean?
    OK, here are the facts of life no one seems to be telling travelers: Your recruiter works for the agency, not you. Their loyalty is to the agency, not you. They also work on commission, which of course encourages maximizing profits from travelers. To the extent that the agency and recruiter have a culture that encourages traveler retention, they may do right by you under some circumstances. Do read your contract and see if you can find any hint that they are looking out for your best interests. Nope, the contract protects their interests, not yours.

    If you feel close to your recruiter and start treating them like a friend, it will end badly. You won't be able to negotiate professionally and will lose income. You will spill details about your personal life and professional life that can not possibly help you.

    It is fine to have a cordial and friendly relationship and communication, but don't ever mistake an agency or recruiter for a friend. They are not. They are looking out for their business interests first, and that includes making you feel like they are your friend. Is AT&T your friend? Do they have your back? Nor does any other company you do business with.
    hondaa, eldersense, delphine22, and 3 others like this.
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    Thanks for the clarification, Ned.
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    Keep in mind that the hospital pays the agency nearly twice what the agency is paying you (and what the hospital would pay a staff nurse). Facilities that employ a lot of agency nurses by definition can't hire/keep staff nurses. Do what you will with that information. The hospital I work at through an agency is a pretty crappy place to work; if they weren't paying me so much, I wouldn't be there. But I smile and do the best patient care I can and cash my paycheck at the end of the week. If it were super awesome, they could get nurses to work there for less and wouldn't need me.
  7. 1
    Quote from NedRN
    They also work on commission, which of course encourages maximizing profits from travelers.
    Yes yes yes!! They are billing you out for much more than they are paying you. Use this to your advantage if they are in a bind and really need you. When my recruiter calls and says "please please please" I say "bonus bonus bonus." And I won't work an extra unscheduled shift without one.

    One time a group of us from the agency were orienting at a long-term acute-care hospital, and we were being paid "orientation pay," which is $20/hr. (We usually make at least $35 here in FL for agency work.) One person who was new to the agency asked if it were possible for him to get extra time for orientation (not a very reasonable request, as we were lucky to be getting any at all). The educator very politely told him they couldn't afford to do any more orientation time, as the agency was billing us out as regular nurses. WELL, when we found THAT out, she said, "OK, now it's time for the second half of the day, in which you will be orienting on the floor. Maybe you can take a pt or two." We all stated right then and there that if we weren't going to be paid to work as nurses, we weren't going to lay a finger on a person or chart a word, we would just follow and observe. And the agency was just pocketing the difference!
    eldersense likes this.
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    Over all, are you happy with your agency? Have you worked for others prior to this one? Which agency do you recommend as I'm in Florida too and am considering agency work.
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    I work for Medical Solutions and love the way that they take care of me. I have worked for others but usually find them good for a contract or two then they tend to forget that I am out there working for them, or they merge with a larger company and I become a number. I do not like larger impersonal companies. In Florida are several based in Boca Raton area but can't remember exactly which ones
    BahoRN likes this.
  10. 1
    Quote from BahoRN
    Over all, are you happy with your agency? Have you worked for others prior to this one? Which agency do you recommend as I'm in Florida too and am considering agency work.
    I am with Medical Staffing Network. They staff all over the state. My local office is a little clueless -- one of the secretaries keeps insisting on calling me at 11 am on a day after I've worked night shift, to tell me something stupid that she already emailed me anyway. But I think I have them trained up right now. ;-)
    BahoRN likes this.


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