Do travel nurse negotiations fill you with dread? You might be excited about the opportunity to travel to your latest job, but you may be apprehensive about hashing out all the details. Negotiations about pay, benefits, and other stipulations don’t have to be nerve-wracking affairs. The trick is to take the process step by step while keeping the following in mind.
Why Negotiation as a Travel Nurse is So Important
By negotiating your contract, you can potentially get paid more as a travel nurse. For that reason, this should be seen as a positive time where you get to advocate for the salary you want. A study by George Mason University and Temple University found that those who negotiated their salary increased their starting pay by an average of $5,000 annually. The alternative is to take whatever salary you’re given, which is a guaranteed way to get paid less than you’re actually worth.
While negotiating you may not get the full salary you expect, it’s always useful to try and get as much as you can.
Another reason negotiation is useful is because bill rates for travel nursing jobs can vary drastically. The bill rates may be different from one travel nurse to the next, even while working at the same medical facility!
This means that the rates you get paid as a travel nurse will also vary. With so many variables in place that dictate how much you’re paid, it always pays to negotiate.
Aside from salary and billing rates, your contract as a travel nurse may contain a few clauses you’ll want to discuss with your potential employer. Examples include missed shift penalties, guaranteed hours, cancellations, and non-compete clauses, to name a few.
Therefore, negotiations aren’t always about money. By advocating for what you most expect out of the job, you can help yourself feel more satisfied about the position before you accept.
How to Negotiate Travel Nurse Reimbursements
As a travel nurse, you may have expenses that come out of your pocket. You can attempt to recoup these costs by negotiating for various reimbursements, such as license fees, food, gas, and mileage. Your goal should be to try and get the agency you’re working with to cover as many of the costs as possible without adjusting your weekly pay.
The Time to Negotiate Travel Nursing Pay
You can gain the upper hand by viewing every interaction with an employer as part of the negotiation process. As someone new to travel nursing, you may believe that negotiations only happen after you’ve accepted the job. However, you should begin negotiating before you have your first interaction with an employer. By viewing every interaction as an opportunity to get what you want, you’ll be more advantaged than another travel nurse who may take any offer that comes their way.
Know Travel Nursing Pay Packages Inside and Out
To be successful at salary negotiations, you should have a clear understanding about the range of pay packages available to travel nurses. That’s the only way to accurately calculate the value of a particular pay package while comparing your pay against other similar packages. You’ll also seem more competent to potential employers, making them less likely to try and take advantage of your naivete.
Know Your Bottom Line but Don’t Divulge it to Employers
When negotiating for pay, always have a bottom line in mind. This is the amount you truly want and feel you deserve. Having that number in mind will let you know whether an offer you receive is good or bad. Don’t divulge your bottom line to a potential employer, however, as you may limit yourself when the employer was actually going to suggest a figure higher than your bottom line implied.
Be an Excellent Travel Nurse
You’ll be better at negotiating if you can demonstrate the value you bring to the table. Potential employers will be more than willing to pay high salaries to secure top talent. If you go above and beyond and perform stellar work whenever you’re on the job, you’ll have more leverage during the negotiation process.
Partner with a Healthcare Staffing Agency
A healthcare staffing agency works on your behalf to help you find the best travel nursing jobs around the country – or around the world. When you work with an agency, you get paired with a nurse recruiter. This individual’s job is to find you the best opportunities as they relate to your skills, experience, and career ambitions. Your nursing recruiter can also help you find open positions that closely match the contract clauses you are interested in, and the higher pay you expect. Negotiations become easier when you’re in demand and find yourself applying for a position that is perfect for you.
If you are a travel nurse and you want to find employment fast, partner with Prolink. We give you access to the latest travel nursing jobs and applying is easy. Start the process today by calling (866)777-3704.