Key Points:

  • Finding your own assignment without an agency has some potential benefits.

  • Among these benefits include improved access to positions and higher pay.  

  • These techniques do involve substantial extra work.

  • A major advantage is negotiating with agencies from a position of strength.

  • Working directly for a hospital can have advantages.

 

Introduction

Depending on an agency to get you an assignment can be hit or miss for any number of reasons. One such factor is their communication and relationship to the hospital. Human resource departments are notorious for poor agency relations as they may have to field perhaps 20 or more phone calls a day from agencies fishing for assignments or following up on a submission. Another factor is an agency’s bill rate. Because of a high bill rate, your submitting agency may not be a hospital’s first choice and your profile may languish accordingly unbeknownst to you. And many times, an assignment that your agency thinks is open is non-existent. Other times, they may not be aware that positions are indeed open.

With a bit of work, you may be able to facilitate your ideal assignment and maximize your pay at the same time. The suggestions below represent practices that are not always politically correct. They may make you feel uncomfortable. These are advanced techniques only for travelers who really want a particular assignment, or are willing to step outside the box to maximize their income. Nothing venture, nothing win! For the vast majority of travelers, letting an agency do the work getting assignments in the traditional fashion will be ideal for them. Only seasoned travelers should try these techniques.

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