Becoming an agency nurse is not something that suits everyone, it is a decision which is very personal to you, your personality and your lifestyle. If you are considering registering with an agency, whether as a newly qualified nurse having completed your preceptorship, or as a substantive post holder looking for an additional income, agency work can be very rewarding and have a wide range of benefits.
What should you consider when thinking about agency work?
Not all nursing agencies are the same. Take the time to speak to the agency representatives. Find out how they will support you as a qualified nurse to maintain and develop your clinical skills. For example, can they provide effective appraisals and revalidation support? Can they provide the quantity and quality of clinical placements to suit your needs and how quickly will you be paid for the work that you have undertaken?
Medacs Healthcare understands the demands of agency nursing today and feels passionately about supporting and developing our nurses to deliver the best person-centred care possible at a time and location to suit them.
Adapting to an unfamiliar setting
As an agency nurse, you need to be able to adapt to new situations, anticipating the needs of the patients and other team members. Acting appropriately and professionally at all times, you will often make on-the-spot decisions regarding the patient’s care. It's these decision-making skills, and ensuring that the patient is always at the heart of everything you do, which make agency nurses such a valuable part of the team.
Adopting the right approach
We understand that meeting new team members can be daunting but as a professional, your skills and experiences will give you the confidence to forge relationships quickly and appropriately, not only with colleagues and other members of the multi-disciplinary teams but with the patients in your care.
Being confident, open and friendly, and demonstrating a willingness to learn new skills can quickly build you a strong reputation as a flexible and adaptable agency nurse. This can give you an advantage over others and ensure that employers request for you to come back again and again.
Getting the work-life balance right
Deciding when and where to work and how often is one of the most rewarding features of becoming an agency nurse, giving you the ability to balance both your personal and professional life. Remember as an agency nurse you are also entitled to paid holidays and access to a work-based pension scheme so there has never been a better time to consider agency nursing as a career of choice.
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