Nursing recruitment has changed


Nursing recruitment has changed over the past years in so many ways.

There is an obvious shortage of nurses across all specialties UK wide, and when you consider the natural ageing of experienced nurses in the profession, coupled with far fewer new nurses qualifying you can understand why nurses are in such demand.

In my history of working as a specialist nursing recruitment consultant the feedback from nurses has generally been summed up in two main categories; some nurses had found that the salary for nursing offered by the NHS had fallen far below the tough requirements of the role and left the profession. Others had discovered that the ability to work via their own limited company as a locum made it financially beneficial. The result being a huge influx of nurses happy to work as locums.

Trusts began to realise that many nurses were leaving the hospital trusts to work for the agencies on a full-time basis and made an attempt to lure nurses back to the NHS with a promise of higher hourly rates than the agency and also the guarantee that they would get a minimum of 30 hours via the bank trust weekly. 

There have been so many reasons over the last few years that have been a catalyst for nurses to choose to locum with an agency rather than to be substantively employed, or to marry the two together and work part time in a Trust and part time as an agency nurse. 

The primary benefits are for nurses to have more flexibility around their own schedules as well as more money earnt from working as a locum agency nurse as oppose to working with their local bank Trust. (Even after you take into consideration the strict guidelines passed to the agencies – for example, introducing capped rates, specific regulations regarding compliance and introduction of IR35 which meant all agency workers have to work via an umbrella service.)

With ample agencies to choose from and compare rates with, most agency nurses find sufficient work by registering with up to 3 agencies, each offering slightly different rates or bonus’s for new nurses.

The pandemic has caused huge changes with many nurses choosing not to work at all during the crisis and has highlighted the grave shortage of nurses especially within ICU and critical care wards. Although some nurses have returned to nursing during the height of the pandemic to assist as volunteers, and others have been fast tracked through NMC registration to assist on the wards and front line to reduce the pressure on current staff there is still a huge shortage in both the private and public sector.

Nurses are now able to pick and choose the role they want as they realise that they are an essential commodity. Many have chosen to work in roles that are less demanding than working on the wards with jobs as a Flu Jab Nurse, Practice Nurse or Clinical Nurses becoming very popular. As these are roles working 9am – 5pm as opposed to 12 hours on a ward, you can understand why they have been so sought after.

Nurses currently have so much choice as to where they want to go and can pick at choose their shifts, working days and getting inflated rates (in some private locations) that there is no issue with finding work. As a specialist nursing consultant, working with a family run agency, what I bring to the table is years of experience supplying agency nurses into the NHS, private and MoD as well as a genuine passion for providing a personal service.

I would be thrilled if you would give me the opportunity to represent you and look forward to working with you in the near future.

Quality Locum Solutions