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Verus People answer your FAQs about working for a nursing agency

7 Apr 2023

Many nurses experience remote health practice for the first time while working for a nursing agency. CRANAplus has invited Corporate Member Verus People to answer your frequently asked questions about this mode of employment.

What is nurs­ing agency work? 

Nurs­ing agency work refers to the prac­tice of hir­ing nurs­es on a tem­po­rary or con­tract basis through a nurs­ing agency. These agen­cies act as inter­me­di­aries between health­care facil­i­ties and nurs­es, pro­vid­ing health­care facil­i­ties with nurs­es on an as-need­ed basis. 

Nurs­ing agency work allows nurs­es to work in a vari­ety of set­tings, includ­ing hos­pi­tals, clin­ics, and nurs­ing homes, and pro­vides the flex­i­bil­i­ty to choose when and where they work.

What qual­i­fi­ca­tions do I need to work as a nurse through an agency? 

In Aus­tralia, to work as a nurse through an agency, you typ­i­cal­ly need to have:

• A cur­rent reg­is­tra­tion and nurs­ing prac­tice per­mit with the Aus­tralian Health Prac­ti­tion­er Reg­u­la­tion Agency (AHPRA).
• A min­i­mum of 12 months of recent nurs­ing expe­ri­ence in an acute care set­ting.
• A cur­rent Nation­al Police Check.
• A valid Work­ing With Chil­dren Check (WWCC) or equiv­a­lent depend­ing on the state.
• A valid pro­fes­sion­al indem­ni­ty insur­ance.
• Pro­fi­cien­cy in Eng­lish lan­guage
and com­pre­hen­sion.
• A valid visa (if you’re an inter­na­tion­al nurse).
• Updat­ed vac­ci­na­tion records.

It’s impor­tant to note that the spe­cif­ic qual­i­fi­ca­tions may vary depend­ing on the agency and the type of work you’re look­ing to do. It’s best to check with the agency or con­sult with a recruit­ment agent for spe­cif­ic require­ments. Also, hav­ing a spe­cialised cer­ti­fi­ca­tion in cer­tain areas such as ICU, oncol­o­gy, pae­di­atrics, men­tal health and oth­ers may also increase your chances of get­ting hired by an agency.

What are the ben­e­fits of work­ing as a nurse through an agency? 

There are many ben­e­fits to work­ing as a nurse through an agency. The most obvi­ous is the flex­i­bil­i­ty of being able to choose when and where you work. You can also gain expe­ri­ence in dif­fer­ent spe­cial­ties, set­tings, and loca­tions, which can help you to advance your career.

Addi­tion­al­ly, work­ing for an agency can pro­vide you with a con­sis­tent and sta­ble income, even if you’re only work­ing part-time. 

It also allows you to have a vari­ety of shifts, which can be ben­e­fi­cial for nurs­es who want to work part-time or have oth­er commitments.

How do agency shifts and sched­ules work?

Agency shifts and sched­ules vary depend­ing on the agency and the loca­tion but usu­al­ly run from two to 12 weeks in length. Some agen­cies offer a vari­ety of shift options, includ­ing full-time, part-time, and casu­al work. Oth­ers may offer a more con­sis­tent sched­ule, with reg­u­lar shifts.

How do I find nurs­ing agency work?

There are many ways to find nurs­ing agency work. One of the most com­mon is to search online for nurs­ing agen­cies in your area. You can also ask friends or col­leagues who have worked with an agency in the past for rec­om­men­da­tions. Addi­tion­al­ly, many hos­pi­tals and health­care facil­i­ties have rela­tion­ships with agen­cies and can pro­vide you with infor­ma­tion on how to find work through an agency. If you’re inter­est­ed in nurs­ing agency work or would like to find out more then get in con­tact with our spe­cial­ist Nurs­ing team at Verus Peo­ple by email­ing nursing@​veruspeople.​com or giv­ing us a call on 1300 063 437.

Are you tran­si­tion­ing to remote health prac­tice? Have you secured a full-time, part-time, con­tract, or agency role in remote Aus­tralia? Learn how to pre­pare effec­tive­ly by con­tact­ing the CRANAplus Pro­fes­sion­al Ser­vices team at professionalservices@​crana.​org.​au or by read­ing for our Going Remote Guide’.