Finding the Right Travel Nurse or Clinician in a Competitive Market

Author: Michael Elm, Business Development Manager, Central Region
healthcare team

The shortage in healthcare personnel is real and I’m sure many won’t deny it. When it comes to employing travel nurses or other clinicians, there are a few rules of thumb that can give you the advantage over other competing facilities. Here are some strategies to find the right candidate first!


Be aggressive!

Once you disseminate your job order to your agencies, be intentional about interviewing as fast as you can. The most successful facilities are interviewing candidates almost immediately after they are submitted to them. This allows them to pick out their perfect candidate and make an offer before other facilities can swoop in. Facilities that are slower to interview and offer candidates a position often miss out on their first choice.


Be competitive!

In the current market, most travelers are being submitted out to multiple jobs at the same time. This has led to intense competition between facilities. While in most cases there is no shortage of submissions to your facility, the best candidates are being picked up fast by other facilities. We have seen time and time again, facilities will interview a candidate but then wait to make the offer. Don’t wait to make an offer or you run the risk of the candidate accepting a position with another hospital.


Know your agency partners

Each agency has a different process that can vary dramatically from another. Some are prepared to submit their candidate quickly, while others take more time. Quick submissions may seem appealing, however, it’s not always the best. I know I just told you to be aggressive but that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t proceed with caution. Agencies that can submit within minutes of your job order being made public, may not be able to ensure that their candidate is looped in on all the details your position and facility are requesting. Make sure you always interview your candidates in a thorough manner, especially if it was a quick submission. Questions should include:

  • What do you know about our facility?
  • Has your Recruiter filled you in on the specifics of the assignment?
  • How familiar are you with the area?

Agencies might not always be able to give their candidates all the information they can. However, during an interview, it is in your best interest to do just that! An informed candidate makes the best decisions and remains loyal to them.


Don’t wait to make an offer or you run the risk of the candidate accepting a position with another hospital.


Set the right expectations

The right expectations begin in the job order disseminating process. The more information you can provide in a job order, the better. This allows agencies to communicate what is wanted and needed from your facility. It also allows you to receive candidates that are ready and willing to come to your facility regardless of the unique requirements. They will be more loyal and committed to their assignment in the long run.


Adopting a sound process for hiring travel clinicians will save you time and money in the long run. Whether you’re working with FlexCare or another staffing firm, you can and should expect expert help managing your traveler program so that you can attract the best candidates for your facility.


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