You just got off the phone with Katie from Agency 123 and she’s amazing, understands everything you’re looking for in a position, and you definitely want to work with her. Then your coworker tells you that she’s heard you should always talk to multiple staffing agencies and that you should call Jill from Agency ABC. You’re confused now. Katie is great, but what if your coworker is right, and how exactly do you work with multiple companies?
This situation comes up for nearly every traveler out there. As a travel healthcare professional, there is much to learn. Whether you’re just starting your research, about to begin your first assignment, or an experienced pro, you know that the information on being a traveler is endless. One of the dilemmas many travelers face is working with multiple staffing agencies. It doesn’t have to be a headache though. Let’s take a look at the three must-knows about working with multiple agencies.
Know the pros & cons
Like everything, there are pros and cons to working with more than one agency.
- More job opportunities for you
- Always having a backup if one recruiter leaves their position
- Different pay packages, benefits, and perks
- Building multiple profiles, doing multiple applications
- Remembering the details (recruiter’s names, which company offers what benefits, etc.)
- Making sure you don’t accidentally get double submitted (we will talk about this in a later paragraph)
If the pros outweigh the cons for you, you should consider chatting with multiple agencies. If the additional paperwork or organizing details doesn’t seem worth it, find one company that fits your needs.
Be honest & transparent
From your first conversation with a recruiter, be honest and transparent. When a recruiter asks if you’re working with other agencies, tell them the truth. If you don’t, you end up hurting yourself and might burn a bridge with that recruiter down the road. There are a few reasons recruiters want to know if you’re working with other agencies.
- They want to know what YOU know about travel healthcare. If you’ve never taken a travel assignment and they’re the first recruiter you’ve talked to, they’re probably going to want to provide you with more information than they might give to a seasoned traveler.
- They want to know if you’re submitted to any jobs already and prevent a double submission. Double submission, defined as being submitted to the same job by two companies, can sometimes ruin your chance at getting the job. Hospitals don’t want to play favorites and send an offer to one company and not the other because it could affect their relationship with that agency. The result? They toss out your profile entirely.
- They want to know what you’re looking for in an agency that another may not be offering you. Maybe you’re looking for different benefits, pay packages, or wanting to work with a hospital that Agency 123 doesn’t, while Agency ABC does.
When you’re honest and transparent from the start, it creates a positive and open relationship with your recruiter.
Communication is key to any relationship, including your relationships with your recruiters. Communication includes letting your recruiters know when another staffing agency has submitted you to a position. This prevents double submission. It also includes letting your recruiters know if and when something has changed. If you originally were set on going to Washington in December, but now you have to wait a month until after your brother’s surgery, communicate that. You don’t want two weeks to go by before you’ve mentioned this to your recruiters. Remember, they’re spending time and effort looking for assignments for you, calling hospitals, and putting work into finding you an assignment.
Don’t go dark
This is one of the most frustrating things recruiters experience, but you can easily avoid this. Don’t go dark on your recruiter. One more time. Don’t go dark on your recruiter. Going dark on your recruiter basically means falling off the face of the earth – not returning calls, texts, emails, Facebook messages, carrier pigeons, whatever the case may be.
Many travelers fear that when they tell their recruiter they’ve taken a job with another company, that they’ll be upset. That is not the case. A recruiter would much rather have you tell them the truth than not hear from you for months until you’re looking for another assignment. At that point, your recruiter will likely feel hurt that you never got back to them, after they were working diligently to find you a job. It takes 1 minute to send an email or text letting them know that you found an assignment with another company. If you would still like to keep in touch for future assignments, this goes a very long way in maintaining your recruiter/traveler relationship.
What experiences have you had in working with multiple companies? Did you like it or hate it? Was it beneficial to you as a traveler? Please share in the comments below!
Jillian Haney is a Recruiter for the Aureus Medical Social Media Recruitment Team.