Staying Organized: Creating your Travel Binder
You've made the decision to become a travel nurse and the fun is about to begin! But first things first: PAPERWORK. Doing your research, choosing the agency that best fits you and submitting your application is just the beginning. Once you accept an assignment, things start moving like lightening and it can be difficult to keep up. Travel nurse paperwork can give you the blues! There are several items that you will have to supply the agency with. Last minute request can make the process pretty stressful for you, your recruiter and/or compliance manager if you do not have easy access to these items. There is no time for procrastination. If you're not a fan of chaos and feeling overwhelmed like myself, don't fret, I have the solution for you to avoid the stress. The key is to stay organized and have everything easily accessible to you.
Building your Travel Nurse Binder
Through my journey into travel nursing and working with multiple agencies, the one thing that consistently impressed my recruiters was my level of organization. When I received the request for all of my documentation, everything was one click away. Constructing your Travel Binder is an important step in becoming a bomb Travel Nurse. The application process can be intimidating due to the amount of paperwork that the agency may request. I have put together a binder with all the necessary documents that most travel agencies require.
CHEL'S PRO TIP 1: Although it may be time consuming, saving all of your Travel Nurse documents into a .pdf file and saving them in a folder through Google Drive (my personal fave) or Microsoft OneDrive will make your process a breeze when applying to new positions.
An up to date resume should always be readily available. Remember to update your resume after each assignment. Always list the agency as well as the hospital. Your recruiter will need the agency information for employment checks. For additional tips on writing your resume, email me using the "Contact" tab.
II. Skills Checklist
A checklist of your skills should be included. Most agencies allow you to do this online. If you are able to print a copy of it, be sure to add it to your binder.
III. Medical Information/Documents
Physical Form signed by a physician (obtain correct form from your agency)
Influenza or signed declination during flu season (depends on facility)
Varicella or positive titer
Tdap within the last 10 years
PPD, TB QuantiFERON, T-spot or CXR & Review form (CXR within the last 5 years)
Hepatitis B 3-shot series, Positive titer or signed declinations (if available)
MMR or Mumps, Rubella and Rubeloa Titers
Respiratory Fit test within the last 12 months
Drug screen (most agencies will set this up for you)
*Additonal information may be needed for different agencies/facilities*
IV. Make copies of the following (front and back):
Driver's License (For I9 verification form - must be signed)
BLS (must be signed - American Heart Association only)
ACLS/PALS (must be signed - American Heart Association only)
All other certifications (CCRN, TNCC, NIH, CPI, etc.)
Social Security Card or Passport (used for I9 verification form)
Active Nursing Licenses (per state or compact)
Notarized I9 form (some agencies may do this for you - easy to find a blank form online)
2 written references (most recent jobs)
CHEL'S PRO TIP 2: I keep a scanned copy of all licenses, certifications, health immunizations, doctor physical and resume on my cell phone at all times. I use an app called TinyScanner on my iPhone to scan and label all the documents. I can easily access them and email them to my recruiter on the go.
V. Direct Deposit Form
If you cant remember your bank account and/or routing number quickly, I recommend finding a generic direct deposit form online and add that to your binder as well. I also keep a copy saved to my phone or easy access on the go.
CHEL'S PRO TIP 3: Place a copy of each contract in your portfolio as well. I bring my Travel Binder with me on each assignment to reference back to my contract when needed. Before agreeing and signing your contract, always read over the document thoroughly for accuracy. Creating a binder for CEU's or even storing them in your travel binder is equally as important and will come in handy if you are ever audited.
Building your binder is a lot of work at the beginning but once you finally complete it, keeping it up to date will save you time and leave you stress free when applying for positions in the future. I really hope you find this information helpful and as always, if you have any questions or need assistance please do not hesitate to contact me. I am just a click away!
**If there are documents or information that I may have left out or an agency/recruiter has requested from you that is not listed, please drop a comment below with that information so that I may keep my list as up to date as possible.**
The Fabuleux Nurse