Nurses: Should You Consider Temp-to-Hire Positions?

For decades, the holy grail of job search has been a permanent, full-time position with all the benefits that go along with that. While that is still the goal for many professional nurses looking for a new position, the best path to get to that coveted full-time role may not be a straight one. For those professional nurses ultimately looking to get their optimal position, temp-to-hire may be a shrewd way to get there.

High Demand for Nurses = Increased Opportunity

happy-nurseIt’s no secret that job opportunities in the healthcare field as a whole have been plentiful and while there may not be the shortage of nurses there was in years past, demand for nurses at every professional level is still very strong. In fact, the job market for Registered Nurses and Licensed Practical Nurses is expected to grow by 16% during the next decade – more than double the 7% expected job growth in the US economy as a whole. In addition, turnover for nurses is expected to be high given that approximately 50% of Registered Nurses are 50 or older. Nurses today are well-positioned for job growth and security throughout the next decade.

In the midst of this extraordinary demand for nurses, facilities spend significant funds to attract and retain top healthcare talent. Sign-on bonuses, increased shift differentials, continuing education opportunities, and premium benefits are among the incentives used to entice skilled professionals. Offering these benefits comes at an ever-increasing price to healthcare practices who keep close watch on their bottom lines. So, many hospitals and practices have opted to create temp-to-hire positions. Temp-to hire positions give the facilities a solution to their immediate staffing needs while allowing them time to assess fit before committing pricey benefits to their new hires.

Why Temp-to-Hire Makes Sense for Many

While temp-to-hire makes sense for hiring managers and facilities, it can be a fantastic opportunity for nurses as well. With permanent placement positions, many benefits may not kick in until after a predefined period outlined in the employment agreement, or they may require you to pay back any sign-on bonus if you leave before the probationary period ends. Once under contract, if you determine the role is a bad fit for you – you are unhappy with the facility, your team, the procedures, or anything else, you risk forfeiting these benefits or repaying them if you leave early. Wouldn’t it be easier to avoid that situation and make a solid and fruitful job choice in the first place?

The temp-to-hire structure solves that unhappy situation by allowing parties on both sides to try out the partnership before committing to it fully. So many factors go into making a job a great fit, and no one position or facility is great for everyone. With temp-to-hire, nurses are free to explore all aspects of the position first in order to make a confident decision down the line. Temp-to-hire advantages include:

  • Increased job flexibility
  • Access to a wide variety of facilities
  • Time to assess fit
  • Ability to make an informed, educated choice about a facility
  • Higher hourly wage
  • No contractual or financial burdens

Often, if companies are eager to keep you after the temporary assignment ends, they may offer the same incentives to get you onto their team permanently. If things go well in the position, you will get the best of both worlds.

Nurses are in a great position these days in terms of finding the perfect job. Keeping all job options on the table allows nurses maximum choice and access to the widest variety of positions. Temp-to-hire can be a wonderful opportunity to find that perfect job – whether you are looking for temporary work, or on the road to a full-time, permanent position.

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