Questions to Ask ? - for the Travel Nurse

Travel Nursing Questions

Questions to ask the Travel Nursing Recruiter....

Are the hours per week guaranteed?

While you are on assignment and the census is real low and you get called off will they still pay you?

Is there any floating required to other units? What units? If you don't want to float make sure it is written in the contract.

Is there a completion Bonus? How much? Can you work it
into a reimbursement or per diem or into the pay rate (bonuses are usually taxed more than your pay) ?

Is there a renewal bonus? (If this is a renewal or extension contract) Negotiate for this because the facility would have a trained staff and no additional Travel pay for another Traveler.

What type of Unit is it? Staffing? Other Support Staff?

What shifts will you work? Will you have to float to other shifts or do rotating shifts?

Will you have to be on call? What is the on call pay?

Base pay rate per hour? Overtime pay rate? Holiday pay?

What Holidays does the Travel Nursing Company have?

Will you have to be Charge RN? How often? Is there Charge Pay? How Much?

Possible Extensions? What is the max amount of extensions allowed? How much time will you have to be gone before you come back after you are maxed out?

Is there a clause to prevent you from being hired as a perm employee? If there is for how long? Can the Hospital pay a fee to release the clause? Ask that they delete it which they may if they want to sign you.

If you are sick can you make up shifts? Will they deduct for Housing costs related to the time you are sick? Can you extend contract if you are sick for example a week? (some companies won't bother you if it is maybe 2-3 days in an assignment or will work with you if it is more so it is wise to discuss this possibility).

If you extend can you have some time off between? Will you be charged for housing costs if you still want to maintain the same housing? Depends how long but if you have to pay see if you can exchange a bonus for these costs. If you may need sometime in the middle of an assignment for something very important and brief give your recruiter and manager forewarning and come up with a possible plan.

Supplied Car Rental or Car Rental Reimbursement? If you don't take how much more paid?

Airfare paid? How much? If you don't take how much more paid?

Travel Pay? How much?

Do they do the Tax Advantage Program? Details?

Temporary Housing Questions....

Closeness to facility? (verify through mapquest or googlemaps)

Can you take part in selecting housing that they will lease for you? Saying you will consider what they have if they consider what you find. (Negotiating)

Any Deposits? (Shouldn't be or very minimal like a pet deposit)

Will they cover utilities? Which ones? Up to what limit? (Be aware many Travel Nurse Agencies cover everything except maybe phone, sometimes cable)

What exactly is in the furniture package? What size Bed? What size TV? (Bed , Nightstand, Sofa, Coffee Table, Recliner-type chair, Side Table, 2 lamps, sometimes Art) Some Corporate Apartments come with a real nice furniture package because the owners supply it rather than the Travel Nursing Company renting. Do your Research.

Is there a house wares package? (Pots, Pans, Dishes, Glasses, spoons, forks, knives, kitchen utensils, microwave, towels, sheets)

Washer & Dryer? Dishwasher? If not where is the Laundry Room? On the same floor? How many W/D's ? Costs? ( I like to be able to wash my clothes when I want to, No Charge.)

Cable? Basic? Phone? High-speed Internet? (Some places do have wireless)

Number of days you can move in prior to Start Date of Assignment? Number of Days to Move out after Last Day of Assignment?

Which Floor? End Unit? ( I prefer Top Floor End Unit For Quiet & Security but check the layout online for physical problems such as near a busy street, parking, pool)

Central A/C Heat? (Always ask . Remember without it you may need to open windows which invites noise, light, pollution and even bugs or thieves.)

Square Feet of apartment ? ( I've seen pictures stretched on the Internet and people lie about the exact square footage. For the most part if it is listed on a major apt search engine it usually is right but if it isn't you should find out through feedback from other Travelers on Travel Nurse Forums or Apartment Ratings).

Name of the Apartments and address? (With that info alone you can find a lot of info on the Internet and also calling the leasing agent.)

Travel Nursing Company Benefits…

Health Insurance? Name of Company? 1st Day Coverage? Can they email Basic Info about the coverage?

Dental?

Reimbursement for carrying your own health insurance? How much? ( I prefer carrying my own. Blue Cross Blue Shield which is good almost everywhere. This way I have direct control of my insurance and if I change to another company no hassle. Negotiate the reimbursement . I've received up to $300/month and as low as $125/month . Really depends on the whole package.

401K? Matching? How much? Start Date?

Profit Sharing?

Vacation?

Referral Bonuses? For referring other Travelers and How much? When do you receive it? How many times can you receive it?

Bonuses? End of assignment? Extending an Assignment? Beginning of assignment? Loyalty Bonus or Rewards?

Reimbursement for Continuing Education?

Reimbursement for Licensure ?

Questions to Ask the Hiring Manager…

Note: Many of the questions you asked the recruiter regarding the facility need to be asked to the Hiring Manager too. This is important because they may have a better answer and so the recruiter and the hiring manager are reading from the same script. There is a contract between the Facility and the Travel

Nursing Company that you don't see. This contract may vary from the one you have between Your Travel Nurse Company and You. For this reason you need to verify things. Also if the Hiring Manager is not the direct Manager of the Unit I would ask to speak with that manager if possible. An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure. This will also give you a chance to read that person and their management style.

Staffing Grid? Or Formula?

Floating?

On call?

Mandatory Overtime?

Shift or shifts working? Can you get your shifts back to back the same days each week or spaced out etc.? (Now is the time to negotiate this and IF they agree you may want this written in the contract)

Duties?

Breaks? Lunch?

Assistive Staff? What do they do?

Charting method?

Dress Code?

Inspections?

Charge?

Report procedure?

How many Travelers? Have any extended?

Possible Extensions?

Various procedures depending upon your specialty?

Orientation ? Classroom hours? Orientation Hours on each unit you will work? If there are classes to take later in your Travel Nursing Assignment will they adjust your schedule if you don't want to go over hours and agree to let you know well in advance?

Layout of the unit, size of Nurses Station, interview rooms, other necessary rooms?

Turn over of patients? Length of Stay? Average census?

Ask why they are using Travelers and how Travelers are treated by the perm staff. You may want to wait until later in the conversation to ask this one and pay close attention to the response noting any hesitations.

NOTE: Scrutinize assignments that show up on the radar frequently throughout the year which may be a sign that the hospital was not Traveler Friendly at all. Get feedback from other Travelers.

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