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Who is the best nursing agency to work for?

22nd Jan, 2020

Who is the best nursing agency to work for?
 
 
It can be a little overwhelming deciding what healthcare nursing agency to go with, especially when it comes to deciding what nursing agency will answer to your professional and personal needs best.
 
Not many people know this, but all nurses working with an agency are in control of their life. They have control over what hours they want to work, the location of the role and how long for. Agency nurses can determine if they would prefer to expand their skill set by working in multiple settings, from clinical to support or to keeping residency in one trust.
 
More importantly, working with an agency allows you to spend time doing what you want to do. This can be travelling, obtaining extra training, spending quality time with family, seeing friends or studying part-time. 
 
Not only do you have more time to do what you want, you’re offered countless opportunities and get paid more.
 
In other words, agency nurses are their own boss and make sure they're working with the best nursing agency for them. Everyone's needs are different, and every agency will appeal to you differently. With that in mind, the nursing agency you decide to go with should do two things:
  1. Offer shifts and opportunities that tailor to your schedule and personal needs
  2. Provide the right support you need to develop and succeed in your career
Whether you're a nurse who's worked with an agency for the past five years or have recently graduated, below is a list of questions you should ask yourself when deciding who the best nursing agency to work for.

Will the nursing recruitment agency offer me support?

Most nursing agencies will provide you support with nursing advisors, who are also known as clinical advisors.
 
Advisors tend to offer a variety of support such as professional development, career advice, annual appraisals, revalidation services and supervision, to name a few.
 
It's essential to know their role varies from agency to agency, and those who don't offer support, will advise you what external training providers to go to.
 
Choose an agency that can provide you with the right level of support now and in the future. The right level of support will encourage you to develop on a professional and personal level. Most agencies will do this by offering services such as annual appraisals and revalidation services.
 
Revalidation services are crucial. They ensure nurses reach and maintain professional standards within the industry and keep their NMC registration. As for annual appraisals, they initiate development, determine professional competence, encourage training and motivate you to succeed.

Will the shifts offered by the agency suit my lifestyle?

There are different types of nurses; those who prefer to work various settings across many different locations, nurses who prefer to work close to home and the healthcare professionals who want to develop their skill set in a different country.
 
Nurses who want to work across multiple settings should register with an agency that has the accessibility to offer work in different locations.
 
If you're looking to work closer to home, choose a nearby agency with an excellent presence, and don't forget to ask where most shifts are based.
 
Additionally, if you are looking to work in another country, look into nursing agencies that are well connected with other parts of the world, and can offer locum or full-time international roles that suit you.
 
The right nursing agency will be honest about what shifts they can provide and whether they match your needs, and a great recruiter will check in to see how you are doing.
 
The rule of thumb is recruiters should offer shifts that complement your lifestyle. More importantly, they suit your requirements of now, and in the future.

How significant is the nursing agency's online presence?

In a world dominated by all things digital, it's essential the nursing agency you decide to work with, adopts internet standards that make navigation and communication throughout the website is easy for you to use.
 
Here are a few things you should look out for:
  • The website is mobile-friendly, and both desktop and mobile are easy to navigate on
  • Source of education; more than just a recruitment website
  • Registering as a new nurse on the agency website is easy to do
  • Location of new opportunities is evident on the website
  • Able to digitally submit your timesheet; quick turnaround for getting paid
  • If they have social media, check to see if they reward candidates and have a good reputation
Even if a website seems a bit outdated, focus on the quality of content instead. The agency is worth looking into if they're actively writing content that informs and answers your questions.
 
Remember, not every nursing recruitment agency has had the opportunity to revamp their brand.

What should I look for in nursing recruitment agencies?

It's crucial the agency has a foot in the digital realm. Technology will help communication navigate between you and your recruiter. However, personal relationships go a long way, and in a recruitment setting, you should feel supported, listened to and important to your recruiter.

Some of the best nursing recruitment agencies will ensure you have your own recruiter to help shape and transform your career.

What are the pay rates like in nursing recruitment agencies?

There are two types of nursing recruitment agencies, framework and non-framework agencies, and depending on what you're after, pay rates vary between them both.
 
Framework agencies don't always pay the highest rate, but they are the most popular amongst agency nurses. Here's why:
  • First-hand pick on newly released shifts
  • Tailored shifts to your personal needs
  • Ensure shifts are scheduled ahead
  • Continuity of shifts 
  • Offer opportunities to work alongside quality clients
  • Advise and support you with nursing advisors / clinical advisors
Many Framework agencies run lucrative referral schemes too.
 
Non-framework agencies are usually the best paid, but shifts are often last minute and may require you to travel long distances.
 
Ask yourself, does my lifestyle require me to plan? If it does, Framework agencies could be a better fit for you.

Will nursing recruitment agencies reward me?

Everyone should feel appreciated and recognised for their hard work, especially when your job involves providing the highest level of care to those who need it most.
 
The best nursing agencies will acknowledge your hard work and recognise the value of feeling appreciated. They make sure you feel part of the family, not just another name on their database.
 
Some will thank you with financial incentives; others prefer to treat them to gifts, personal thank you cards, exclusive training or access to events.
 
Other nursing agencies offer incentives to healthcare professionals who work more than 40-hour weeks by entering them into a monthly prize. These prizes can vary from vouchers, spa breaks, air balloon rides, a trip to Paris etc.

Okay, so who is the best nursing agency to work for?

Here's the thing, there is no right or wrong answer. It all depends on what you are looking for, and what you need to be ticked off your checklist. The truth is, every nurse has a different reason as to why they chose that particular agency.

We can't answer "who is the best nursing agency to work for", but follow these steps:

  • Step one: Write a list of the top three nursing agencies you would like to work with
  • Step two: List things that are most important to you when picking a job
  • Step three: Research, and research some more to see what agency aligns the most with your personal needs
  • Step four: The most crucial step. Narrow your top three agencies to one. Call them up and let your career flourish

Are you the best nursing agency for me?

There's only one way to know, and that's to call. We don't bite, promise. Find out what Your World can do for you by calling our specialist Nursing Team on 0207220825. They're known for going above and beyond. Having provided candidates with over 5 million hours of work in 2018, our recruiters can help you every step of the way.