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Travel Nursing 101: Getting Started

travel nursing 101

Do you feel under-compensated and overworked? Are you ready for worthwhile pay? Well, travel nursing may just be your cup of tea. What’s more, the process to start this next adventure is easier than you think. We’ve reached out to our team to provide the best step-by-step instruction.

Step one: build your profile

With Ethos, the first step is simple. Just go online to and build your profile. Most travel contracts require two years of RN experience, the majority in the specialty or unit you’re applying for. Your assigned recruiter will submit this information to hospitals for your candidacy. Ethos recruiter team lead, Madison Warrener, says,

“Jobs can open and close within the same day, so it’s vital to submit as soon as possible.”

You can help speed up this process by supplying your recruiter with an up-to-date resume. This will include your RN work experience within the last seven years, and two references within the last year. It should also include a copy of your certifications, and if applicable, your Covid vaccine card.

Step two: find travel nursing contracts

Shortly after, your recruiter will collect information, such as, preferred shift, location, and pay, to find you the perfect job. Afterwards, you will receive opportunities with breakdowns of pay and other information specific to the job. Apply for as many jobs as you’d like, and your recruiter will submit an application on your behalf. It can take about a week or longer, to get either an automatic offer or an interview. In the interview, ask any questions you have about the assignment or hospital culture. If given an offer, your recruiter will go over the job information again to confirm your approval. If you approve, our compliance team will reach out to you.

Step three: submit documents needed for travel nursing

Compliance specialist, Brooke Gorman, advises you have access to your immunization records before accepting your offer. Turnaround for bloodwork can be over a week long, and we don’t want to push back your start date. For the same reason, she suggests scheduling a drug screening and other clinic needs as soon as possible. Your compliance specialist works with you to help set up these appointments, and to get anything else you might need.

All documents to submit include:

  • Health documentation (Immunization records/TB test/physical)
  • Background check
  • Certifications (BLS/ACLS)
  • Competency exams, and
  • I-9 documents (driver’s license, social security)

Without any major hiccups, this process takes about two weeks to complete. Having everything ready to submit as soon as possible is key. However, Brooke says,

“The most important detail as a new traveler will be communication with us and being ready to hit the ground running on compliance once they have signed their contract.”

Step four: sign up for payroll

Our payroll team will also reach out to you once you accept your contract. As a travel nurse with Ethos, you have the unique option for healthcare on day one, and get weekly pay. Therefore, you’ll receive an email with information on direct deposit, paystubs, tax information, timecards, payroll app, 401K, and health benefits.

Step five: receive your first day instruction

Once cleared by your hospital, you’ll be sent your first day instruction prior to the Monday you start. This includes basic information such as, facility location, arrival time, and scrub color. It also includes any modules you must complete, and a study guide for any potential testing. Recruiter team lead, Madison, states it may also include consent forms for drug screenings or other documentation.

Step six: get excited

This process may seem overwhelming, but your team at Ethos is here to make it as easy as possible. We strive to keep our line of communication open and to be as helpful as we can. Even after you’ve started your travel nursing assignment, you can reach out to your recruiter with any questions, concerns, or issues. We are here to help you every step of the way.

Here at Ethos Medical Staffing, your path is our purpose. Ready to start your next adventure? Contact us today.



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