What order do I do all this stuff in??? Breaking into the Biz

  1. 0
    Hello fellow travelers!!
    I am new to the travel nurse business and am trying to land my first contract. I have spoken with a few recruiters and they have ranged from very helpful to not at all helpful. However, all of them seem sketchy about helping me with timing.

    I am a full-time labor/delivery/mom-baby nurse with 5 years experience in Indiana. I figured getting a contract would be no problem. I simply assumed obtaining a liscense in whatever state you agreed to work in was a matter of a couple days for verification and a fee (which most sites advertize they either pay or reimburse).

    What Im finding when I talk to recruiters is they dont seem too interested in talking contracts and/or compensation because they cant submit you as an applicant to a hospital if you dont have a liscense for that specific state??? Im confused as to how applicants go about knowing what state to get liscensed in BEFORE even knowing if they will get a job/contract in that state??? Also, for companies like Nurse Choice or Faststaff that specialize in fast placement, how do they deal with the states where it can take 6-8 weeks to obtain a liscense?

    For example, if I put in the foot work and the money to obtain a liscense in California, but I am not offered a contract (I realize there is a big need in Cali right now so not getting any offers may be unlikely but just as an example) it seems like a waste of valuable time and money.

    My other big question about timing is when to put in my "2 weeks notice" with my current full-time job. I have the ability to "get up and go" as I have nothing besides my current job keeping me where I am at. Luckily I have no kids and/or a house to take care of because Im on a month-to-month lease with my apartment. But if a recruiter cant talk real compensation numbers with me until they have submitted me to a hospital and they cant submit me to a hospital until I have a lisence in that state-Im very confused what comes first, the chicken or the egg. I cant quit my full-time job on the hopes I will get a good offer nor can I afford to just get liscened in all the states just to be submitted for consideration.

    How did everyone else handle this??? Am I just missing a big piece of the puzzle??? Thanks ahead of time for your replys and help. Ive been lurking on this board for years but Im ready to take the plunge and start my new career!!!

    Any reply is awesome and helpful.
    Lauren
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  3. 5 Comments so far...

  4. 0
    Do you have a compact license? For some places you need to have a license before submitting as some hospitals will not even accept your profile until you've obtained the license for the state. Some states issue a license within 24 hours and some take weeks.

    You discuss financials of a contract before you allow a recruiter to submit you to a facility. Make it explicitly known to your various recruiters that they are NOT to submit you to a facility unless you authorize them to do so......so that you don't end up submitted to the same hospital by more than one company.
  5. 0
    Quote from mustang_convt
    Hello fellow travelers!!
    I am new to the travel nurse business and am trying to land my first contract. I have spoken with a few recruiters and they have ranged from very helpful to not at all helpful. However, all of them seem sketchy about helping me with timing.

    I am a full-time labor/delivery/mom-baby nurse with 5 years experience in Indiana. I figured getting a contract would be no problem. I simply assumed obtaining a liscense in whatever state you agreed to work in was a matter of a couple days for verification and a fee (which most sites advertize they either pay or reimburse).

    What Im finding when I talk to recruiters is they dont seem too interested in talking contracts and/or compensation because they cant submit you as an applicant to a hospital if you dont have a liscense for that specific state??? Im confused as to how applicants go about knowing what state to get liscensed in BEFORE even knowing if they will get a job/contract in that state??? Also, for companies like Nurse Choice or Faststaff that specialize in fast placement, how do they deal with the states where it can take 6-8 weeks to obtain a liscense?

    For example, if I put in the foot work and the money to obtain a liscense in California, but I am not offered a contract (I realize there is a big need in Cali right now so not getting any offers may be unlikely but just as an example) it seems like a waste of valuable time and money.

    My other big question about timing is when to put in my "2 weeks notice" with my current full-time job. I have the ability to "get up and go" as I have nothing besides my current job keeping me where I am at. Luckily I have no kids and/or a house to take care of because Im on a month-to-month lease with my apartment. But if a recruiter cant talk real compensation numbers with me until they have submitted me to a hospital and they cant submit me to a hospital until I have a lisence in that state-Im very confused what comes first, the chicken or the egg. I cant quit my full-time job on the hopes I will get a good offer nor can I afford to just get liscened in all the states just to be submitted for consideration.

    How did everyone else handle this??? Am I just missing a big piece of the puzzle??? Thanks ahead of time for your replys and help. Ive been lurking on this board for years but Im ready to take the plunge and start my new career!!!

    Any reply is awesome and helpful.
    Lauren
    I can't speak for temporary licensing, but I have applied to South Carolina, Ohio, Florida, California, and Massachusetts for permanent licensure. The quickest I got a license was 8 weeks. So I would plan ahead. I might recommend either going for Texas or California, both seem to have an abundance of jobs that you could count on. Texas has no state taxes, so more income. And then California pays time and half for any day longer then 8 hours, and double pay for any day longer then 12 hours. Plus, you could are likely to find a job!

    I used to be a renter too. No house, no ties anywhere. One thing to remember with that is that you will not receive tax free reimbursements. You will get taxed on your travel, meals, and housing compensation. Someone that has a mortgage would get tax free compensation. Nobody told me that until the last minute. The pay rates aren't that much higher, so I would def recommend California to make up for those taxed losses. Best of luck!
  6. 0
    I am also a Labor and Delivery Nurse in Ky. I plan on starting to travel in early April. I also plan on Fastaff, and Nurses Choice because of short contracts and rapid response. My situation is a little different in that I am retiring before I start to travel and I have a house. Ky is compact state, so I can go to any of the 24 or so states with my one license. I also got a permenent Ca license. I was told to get temporary licenses in other states first to see if I wanted to go back. I liked it a lot then I work get a perment license in that states. I am staying at my old hospital On Call so I have to be back every so often, which is why I wanted short contracts.
    Hope we get to work together some time.
  7. 0
    How true is the "you have to have a license before being submitted?" because the beginning of Jan they were already asking me if I wanted to start traveling earlier like Jan 28th start date. I do not live in a compact state license...I know there are states that are "walk thru" and others take 1-3 weeks. If I am looking for a April 1st job...which are now being offered...why wouldn't I be submitted to a place that takes 3 weeks to get a license?

    My place of employment requires 3 week notice. Thankfully I am prepared to even wait after my notice because I saved enough money to cover expenses. But I am not sure they will submit you when they know the hospitals requirements (ie license in hand) because I would assume that would look bad on the agency...wouldn't it?
  8. 1
    No notice is legally required. Only if you plan to return to that facility will you need to play nice. Of course, playing nice is always better when possible. Also consider what your employer does when they fire someone. No 3 week notice! And firing your employer is exactly what you are doing.

    Either way, you do want to have at least two written references from your current job. Don't depend on what some stranger who answers the hospital phone says years from now. Same strategy at every assignment by the way.
    TheGypsyNurse likes this.


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