Travellers treated better? opinions please

  1. I'm a Staff Nurse. My unit has a few travellers/agency nurses. They are all good nurses and work hard.

    One is new. She's already *****ing about the hosp., etc. *****es about nursing, wants to be a doctor. Okay whatever. Her friend brought her to our unit (another traveller)

    Okay. These two are the managers PETS. They are ADORED. The Attending has joined the lovefest. Okay, whatever.

    These nurses are publicly praised and patted on the back, hugged (literally) constantly. They are begged to stay on our unit. The Staff nurses are either ignored or spoken to condescendingly. Even yelled at.

    All the nurses on the unit work hard and are dedicated. I don't see how these nurses are any better.

    I don't understand my managers thinking. Why does she treat the travellers/agency better than her own staff? Does she want everyone to leave? And yet, she depends on us to work OT and switch days, etc.

    About two months ago, we had some hairy situations on the unit. My manager made a big show of saying how "phenomenal" the travellers worked during their code, etc. and so on. Big hugs. Big displays of affection and compliments.

    I had a code too. Another staff nurse was helping me. I was told by my manager that mine wasn't as bad because it was expected. (*****?) I had taken care of this patient for two weeks and it was a lot of work. I was not told that I did a good job. My boss kept yelling whether the room was cleaned up yet or not.

    I just don't get it.

    Cherry Soda
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    About Cherry Soda

    Joined: Jul '02; Posts: 41


  3. by   sjoe
    Maybe that balances out the karma for all the traveling nurses who get assigned to stunningly dysfunctional facilities, are given the heaviest work load consisting of the "worst" patients that no one else can stand to work with, are never listened to by the supervisors or administrators, etc.

    Maybe you should resign, then come back to the same place as a traveling nurse, as others have done.

    Life, including most certainly the healthcare system, is not fair.
  4. by   Cherry Soda
    Has anyone else had an experience similar to mine?

  5. by   live4today
    When I did traveling nursing, every assignment but one was nice...treated well by both staff and management.

    When I worked agency nursing, some hospitals were better than others in the way the agency nurses were received. Still, for the most part, I was treated very fairly and with respect.

    When I worked as staff nurse, I wished I were still traveling because I was treated much better then, so there may be some truth to travelers being treated better -- IMPO.
  6. by   Tweety
    We use travel nurses and basically they are treated no different than the rest of us. We take the heavier assignments. They do have to be the first to float.

    I get a little resentment that they have in their contracts not to work holidays. But I can't blame them. Plus if they work, it costs the hospital a lot of money, so they let them have off. Why not, it's our unit, we should work the holidays. Some sign a 13 week contract and take vacation right in the middle of their contract too which amazes me.

    We have several travelers that have signed on and on and on and on. They are part of us.

    I do have experience with Travelers that wear their disdain for the hospital on their sleeves, thinking those of us there for the long term are idiots for working there.

    I had one traveler call her recruiter when she had to take an admission she didn't want to. Crybaby. The recruiter was of course powerless. Needless to say she's moving on, after her vacation.

    Bottom line, there are good travelers and bad travelers. Treat them well, welcome them, don't cop a resentment about the money they make, and they usually work out just fine.
  7. by   mattsmom81
    This is part of the dysfunction within our hospital systems and is management's way of intimidating us and keeping us down. They promote night shift against day shift, agency against staff, fulltime against prn, etc.

    Don't allow yourself to be placed into a victim mentality. Put yourself in control.....rather than being used abused and controlled by others.

    Most agency nurses are experienced, independent and flexible (as a group) and are frequently valued for these qualities. Don't knock them...become more like them.
  8. by   Agnus
    Sounds to me like good old fashioned phoney manipulation. I. e. court the traveller. "We would prefer they hire on here permanent. So to get them to do that (once contract requirements are met) we will court them. Flatter them pour it on thick and maybe they will decide to eventually hire here permanently.

    And/or if we treat the travelers well the agency will want to send us a lot more and eventually, by playing these numbers, we will get some permanent hires out of this. "

    I'm not saying this is real smart, but is is real smart to treat staff badly?
  9. by   MollyMo
    When I was traveling, how I was treated varied by location. Some used us as slave labor. Some treated us as a much needed addition(albeit temporary one) to their staff. Some expected us to work all the holidays so the staff could be with their families. Some rotated us just as with regular staff. And I have taken vacation in the middle of a contract, but I still worked my 13 weeks. It isn't necessary to be between contracts to take time off. I negotiated everything I wanted before the agreement was made. Travelers get praise because of our ability to adapt quickly. We get little or no orientation to a facility but are expected to fully functional. (That's what a manager told me.)
  10. by   mattsmom81
    Many facilities DO prefer agency/travelers because they don't have to pay the $$$ to train, maintain, provide benes, do withholding, etc.. The overhead is less, so to speak.

    Managers may browbeat the regular staff as much as they can get away with it, unfortunately, as this is their way of controlling bullying them into submission.

    Travelers/agency are often happier than regular staff as they have more control over their lives and it shows. Management likes the happy faces they see...we're happy because we can stay out of their politics and problems and never have to go back if we choose! LOL!
  11. by   renerian
    I traveled and never ran into that. I think that would bother me enough to bring it to the supers attention that staff are feeling unappreciated. Do you have a fellow employee recognition program you can nominate a co-worker for something? WE had that where I used to work. Maybe you could organize a pot luck. I found great team feelings and some time together. Even though it may be short we always liked it. You could always start a program for recognition in your hospital as part of the retention program. What do you think?

  12. by   Peeps Mcarthur
    As a traveler for an RT company, I would say I don't think I'll be doing that as a nurse.

    EVERY single thing I did was scrutinized to find fault. They said things to me that conveyed thier contempt at every opportunity. At the end of the contract, I was relegated to "stat everything person" in an attempt to get me to break the contract by leaving so they would not have to pay.

    BUT....................PRN staffing was quite different.

    In a local setting, the agency will call you back to a hospital to fill a position that will certainly happen again. If they treat you well , they can expect that you will answer the phone:chuckle

    I love Sjoe's phrase "stunnungly dysfunctional facility" because it fits the local PRN positions I filled.

    I was more or less on-call to these places because they paid well, not because they gave me fruitbaskets or anything. They would call at all hours, and I would go because I was treated like I was really helping them, not that they were helping me by "letting" me come in out of a deep sleep:zzzzz
  13. by   Cherry Soda
    I really like the travellers/agency on my floor, they are good nurses.

    Staff takes the harder patients and the travellers/agency are the first to float. These travellers always pitch in and help the staff if they are drowning.

    I just find the situation a bit odd. Nursing is a bit odd though. lol

    Last edit by Cherry Soda on Nov 10, '02
  14. by   Cherry Soda

    "Maybe you should resign, then come back to the same place as a traveling nurse, as others have done. "

    That sounds like a good idea. The travellers are immune from the politics, the vacation/time off squabbles, they set their own schedule and they do not work holidays or weekends.