The NHS is one of the largest employers in the world, employing over 1.6 million people in the United Kingdom ». The vast majority of its workforce is based in England, with over 351,000 nurses » employed. While working for the NHS is an excellent option for many nurses, temporary work offers many advantages. In this article, I will look at what factors influence nurses’ decisions to register with agencies.
Having jobs in the right locations helps attract nurses from across the country and increases the number of filled shifts. We looked at our data (Nursing Personnel internal data) concerning the issue and found the following:
Having jobs across a range of locations needs to be matched by competitive pay rates. Take a glance at nursing agency ads and you will notice rates, almost literally, popping out at you. Rates, of course, vary according to bands, professions and locations. You will earn more in a city but the cost of living will be much higher.
What are some good locations for nurses interested in working for high rates of pay? Nursing Personnel investigated this area (Nursing Personnel internal data) and came to the following conclusions:
We recently ran a poll on social media to ask ‘what attracts you to nursing agencies?’ ‘Great support’ was the answer we got back ». Nurses looking at an agency with great locations and rates need the support to back them up, ensuring they can get booked into shifts quickly and easily.
Nurses looking to register with agencies should consider registering with framework agencies before signing-up elsewhere. Agencies on the national framework are highly regulated, with regular audits performed to ensure they are adhering to strict audit criteria.
Framework agencies aim to protect patients by meeting the NHS CQC standards for patient safety and protect nurses working to CQC best practice standards compliance. Agencies must pass audits otherwise they will not be able to supply nursing staff. They will always, therefore, have to maintain consistently high standards compared to off-framework agencies.
Nurses registering with these agencies will be required to undergo more thorough registration procedures, but the benefit is greater safety for patients at hospitals run by trusts which use framework agencies.
NHS trusts will have to choose framework agencies, increasing the level of available work for nurses. New measures announced by Health Secretary Jeremy Hunt in June will bar the use of off-framework agencies. If you want to work for agencies in the future, the only place to do so will be at a framework agency.
This is one of the major benefits of working for framework nursing agencies – for details, see the article: Clampdown on staffing agencies charging NHS extortionate rates ».
According to the 2014 Mobile Consumer UK by Deloitte, over 35 million people in the UK have a smartphone ». The figure is 8% higher than 2013 and is growing rapidly thanks to the advent of 4G and free Wi-Fi almost everywhere you look. Technology is the cornerstone of agencies, which are primarily web-based, and rely on websites, apps and other technologies to help retain and recruit candidates. What does this mean for nurses interested in working for nursing agencies?
The United Kingdom has one of the well-respected healthcare systems in the world. Full Fact says research done by the Nuffield Trust and Health Foundation indicated “England had 5.8 nurses (including midwives and health visitors) per 1,000 of the population in 2011 according to analysis by the Nuffield Trust and Health Foundation ».”
According to the latest Care Quality Commission inpatient satisfaction survey, 27% of respondents gave a 10 out of 10 rating » to the treatment received. Nursing agencies help ensure these high standards are maintained by providing additional staff when and as needed.
Our article has shown that agencies are attracting nurses because of competitive rates of pay and jobs across a range of locations. Framework agencies offer a high standard of staffing to clients thanks to rigorous audits which safeguard patient safety.