Why Travel Nurses Should Work With Multiple Recruiters
As a travel nurse, you might see some benefit to working exclusively with one travel nurse agency instead of multiple recruiters. For instance, there could be benefits like loyalty pay, a recruiter who can really get to know you and find positions that match you well and being able to rely on someone you trust.
But although there may be some undisputed benefits to finding a recruiter you can count on, there are also benefits to working with multiple recruiters that can’t be denied.
Here’s why it’s important for travel nurses to work with multiple recruiters whenever possible.
The Benefits of Working with Multiple Recruiters
As Travel Nursing Insider explains on YouTube, working with multiple recruiters is actually a smart negotiation strategy that travel nurses can utilize. Although it might feel like you are “cheating” on your recruiter or being disloyal, it’s very much in your benefit to talk with multiple recruiters so you can get a better understanding of the types of positions and pay being offered by different travel nursing agencies.
Think about it this way: if you are choosing your dinner from a menu, would you rather see all the options that are being offered, or just pick from what the waiter recommends?
Sometimes, it can be more advantageous for you to build a broad picture of everything that is available before you make your decision. Remember, your recruiter works for you, not the other way around.
There are also several practical benefits to working with multiple recruiters that you should be aware of:
- To access all the hospitals in the state. Travel nursing agencies partner with only certain hospitals, so working with multiple recruiters will ensure that you have access to more of the hospitals in the state you want to work at. If you choose just one recruiter to go through, you will be more limited in your hospital choices.
- To get a higher rate. Most of the time, hospitals negotiate their rates directly with the agency they are contracting with, so one hospital could have multiple contracts with different travel nursing agencies. That means that even for the same hospital and same position, you might be able to find a higher rate or package by checking out all of the different recruiters partnering with that hospital.
- More negotiation leverage. Recruiters want to sign you–that’s how they succeed at their job, so it’s to their benefit to get you to sign on with them. And if you let them know that you are exploring offers from multiple recruiters, it can be a way for them to be even more motivated to work to get you the package that is the best fit.
- The recruiter wants you to be happy. It’s not about “threatening” the recruiter by saying you have a better offer, but instead, just being honest about what you are looking for. Nurse recruiters work off of commission, and it’s also to their benefit to work with a nurse as best they can, so the nurse signs on for more assignments, and is able to refer any other travel nurses because of their own great experience.
How to Work with Multiple Recruiters
When you do decide to work with multiple recruiters, you will want to be sure that you include recruiters from a wide range of travel nursing agencies. For instance, you should include:
- “Big-name” travel nursing agencies
- Mid-size travel nursing agencies
- Smaller travel nursing agencies
Hearing offers from a wide range of travel nursing agencies can help you be sure you know exactly what type of agency might be right for you. You may think that only the “big” agencies can provide you with the best base pay or stipends, but this isn’t always the case–and in some situations, smaller agencies may be willing to work more closely with you to find the best fit, or help guide you more if it’s your first assignment.
The important thing to remember is that there is no one-size-fits-all, and it’s best to go with the agency that makes the most sense for you as an individual, not just because it’s the agency everyone else loves.
Focus on the Recruiter, Not Just the Agency
As Travel Nursing Insider points out, working with multiple recruiters also ensures that you have the opportunity to “test out” recruiters with different personality types. Just like nurses, all recruiters are different, and there simply may be a recruiter that you mesh with better than others — and that’s OK.
Finding someone you trust, no matter what credentials the actual agency boasts, maybe even more important than the agency choice itself, so it’s always to your advantage to give yourself the most options by working with multiple recruiters.