Regardless of which Staffing Agency you choose to travel with, and which State and Hospital you decide to work in, it is important that each Healthcare Professional understands the Travel Assignment Process from submitting their application to deploying on, and completing an assignement.
BlueForce submits candidates where they want to be submitted by utilizing what is called a “Shell Profile”. A Shell Profile is a snap shot or preview of the experience and skills of a prospective traveler that a potential client can use to determine if they are interested in moving forward with an employee. It is important to remember that these people have never met the travelers they are going to hire. They are making decisions based on the criteria we provide them.
It is an industry standard to submit 3 file components for the client to review, so they can determine if they want to phone screen a candidate. The 3 pieces are a Resume, Skills Checklist and References.
MAKE SURE YOUR RESUME IS ACCURATE AND UP-TO-DATE! One of the most common reasons that a traveler does not receive a phone screen is because their Resume is out of date or incomplete. There should not be any Work Gaps on your Resume. If there are, explain them. You should not have multiple jobs/assignments that state you are working them “To Present”. Do not put “Float Pool” as the unit you worked. If you worked Float Pool and covered the ER, ICU and MS/Tele, you should have 3 versions of your Resume saved, so you can submit the appropriate one, based on the next assignment you are trying to procure.
The Skills Checklist is a Self-Assessment of the Skillset of a Healthcare Professional. It is important to be honest and diligent when filling this out. Ranking yourself as “Highly Skilled” for every single item on the list can be a detractor. Yes, we all want to be perfect at everything we do, but often that is not the case.
Most clients now want to see 2 Supervisory References. These are best if they are provided by Charge Nurses or Nurse Managers from the most recent assignment that the Traveler completed on their Resume. References go a long way!
Once an offer is made and the Traveler agrees, the next steps to address are compliance and logistics. Based on how much time there is between an Offer and a Start Date, sometimes this timeframe can be very hectic. As a Traveler, it is important that you maintain your “Digital Profile” so you aren’t scrambling to locate all of your required documentation. Here is a list of the items normally required to be considered 100% compliant:
- Skills Checklist
- Competency Exams
- TB or Chest X-Ray
- Hep B
- Background Check
- Drug Screen
While the Health Documentation can vary between clients, it is safe to say that you should maintain every health document possible for your records. Some items, like the TB Test and the Physical expire annually. Remember to take your documents with you when you travel.
While on assignment, it is important to gauge your comfort level quickly and try to make a decision whether you are considering an extension or in search of your next assignment. Yes, patient care is always top priority, but you also need to be aware of when your contract is expiring. If you are not interested in extending you will want to let your recruiter know at least a month before your contract expires, giving you adequate time to consider every possible assignment for your next adventure.
Get a copy of your Performance Evaluations! These are invaluable, and you will want a copy of these to add to your profile.