The Challenges of Being a Travel Nurse
A travel nurse is a registered nurse (RN) who works at hospitals, clinics, and other healthcare settings in a short-term capacity. This career is a viable option if you are a RN who is interested in helping to alleviate nursing shortages all over the U.S. or seek adventure and want to explore the country while helping people.
There are many advantages of travel nursing. Travel Nurses and other RNs earn an average of $75,330 every year and $36.22 per hour, according to information from the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS). Travel nursing also provides more perks and flexibility compared to staff nursing.
Nevertheless, there are also challenges to being a travel nurse. The downsides of the profession don’t outweigh the benefits, but being prepared and educating yourself on what could happen will help you put your best foot forward.
5 Common Challenges of Being a Travel Nurse
Learn about the typical travel nurse challenges you may experience during your assignment.
1. Comparisons About Compensation
One of the common challenges of the life of a travel nurse is resentment of your pay by hospital nurses.
A travel nurse is immediately enlisted to address an urgent staffing need at a hospital or healthcare facility. As a result, it’s likely that you will earn higher wages compared to staff nurses.
It’s possible that some staff nurses will begrudge this difference in your earnings. They may feel that it’s better if the employer will raise their salary, instead of granting extra privileges to travel nurses such as yourself.
You can minimize or prevent the potential resentment of your fellow nurses by not boasting about your earnings. Instead, make sure to be a cooperative colleague who is a pleasure to work with so that they will value your contribution to the team.
2. Substantial Work Assignments
Expect to work hard in exchange for your significant wages and benefits as a travel nurse.
Get ready for each assignment by inquiring with your recruiter about the nurse-to-patient ratio beforehand. Take note that you will likely be assigned a high ratio as a travel nurse.
Do your best to fulfill all your responsibilities despite your demanding workload. However, if you notice that the overload is no longer reasonable, inform your recruiter so they can find out how to improve the situation.
Nurse-to-patient ratios will determine not just the intensity of your work tasks, but also the safety of your patients. According to the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality, adequate nurse staffing requires coordination between management and nursing and is based on patient acuity/turnover, availability of support staff, and settings of care.
3. Comparisons Regarding Shifts
Another typical challenge of travel nursing is being the cause of dissatisfaction among staff nurses due to scheduling.
As a travel nurse, your work shift is based on the healthcare facility’s need, not on the level of your seniority. That’s why you may be assigned to a specific and even more preferable shift.
It’s not surprising if certain staff nurses with unpleasant shifts may feel frustrated when they compare their schedules to yours.
A tangible way for you to appease your colleagues is to be flexible with your work schedule. Be open to adjusting your schedule for the sake of your co-workers to foster camaraderie among the group or offer to help out whenever you can.
4. Floating Frequency
Floating is not a desirable occurrence among nurses. To be realistic though, you should expect to be one of the first nurses to be floated to a different unit if necessary.
It’s easier for you to cope with floating if you focus on its advantages. New experiences will help you develop new skills that will increase your competence as a nurse.
Floating will allow you to gain opportunities that staff nurses who are not open to floating may bypass.
5. Cultural Clashes
The life of a travel nurse involves more freedom compared to the life of a staff nurse. It will give you the chance to work anywhere in the nation. You can travel to new places and be exposed to new cultures.
Make an effort to get along with your fellow nurses no matter where you travel to. However, don’t hesitate to reach out to your recruiter if you feel like one of your co-workers is treating you in an unprofessional, inappropriate way.
Contact AB Staffing Solutions To Overcome Challenges of Being a Travel Nurse
Being a hard-working, friendly team player can help you adjust better to the life of a travel nurse. Nevertheless, it is crucial that you have a reliable, compassionate recruiter and agency that can help you overcome your challenges as a travel nurse if you have any.
AB Staffing Solutions is a travel nurse staffing agency that paves your way to travel nurse assignments in beautiful, interesting places all over the U.S. We provide professional support and guidance during your assignment as a travel nurse.
Call us at 888.515.3900 to explore the possibility of working with AB Staffing Solutions. Apply now to start traveling down the career path of a travel nurse with the assistance of our team.