5 Tips for Effective Orientation and Onboarding for Travel Nurses

For travel nurses every new assignment brings a mix of anticipation and apprehension as they adapt to different healthcare facilities, teams, and patient populations. Integrating travel nurses into your healthcare facility can be a smooth and efficient process with the right orientation and onboarding strategies. Here are five tips to ensure your travel nurses hit the ground running and provide the best care for your patients.

1. Comprehensive Welcome Packet

Provide a detailed welcome packet that includes essential information about your facility. This should cover the facility layout with maps and directions to key areas like break rooms, supply closets, and emergency exits. Include a list of important contacts, such as supervisors, department heads, and IT support. Highlight critical protocols, safety procedures, and any unique aspects of your facility’s operations.

travel nurse orientation and onboarding

2. Tailored Orientation Program

Design an orientation program specifically for travel nurses that is concise yet thorough, focusing on the most important aspects they need to know without overwhelming them. Include hands-on training to allow travel nurses to familiarize themselves with your facility’s equipment and electronic medical record (EMR) systems. Incorporate shadowing opportunities by pairing them with experienced staff members for a day or two to observe and learn the facility’s routines and culture.

3. Mentorship and Support System

Assigning a mentor or go-to person for each travel nurse is essential. This mentor should be an experienced staff member who knows the ins and outs of the facility and can answer questions. They should offer continuous support with regular check-ins to address any concerns or challenges the travel nurse might face. Encouraging open communication is also crucial, ensuring that the travel nurse feels comfortable discussing any issues or uncertainties.

4. Clear Communication of Expectations

Clearly outline your expectations regarding job duties and responsibilities, defining the travel nurse’s role within the team and any specific tasks they need to prioritize. Explain how their performance will be evaluated and any key performance indicators (KPIs) they should be aware of. Additionally, share insights into your facility’s values, mission, and the type of patient care you strive to provide, helping them understand and integrate into the facility culture.

5. Regular Feedback and Evaluation

Provide ongoing feedback and conduct evaluations to ensure travel nurses are adapting well. This process should include constructive feedback, highlighting both strengths and areas for improvement. It should be a two-way conversation, allowing travel nurses to share their experiences and provide feedback on the orientation process. Additionally, offer resources or suggestions for further training to help with their professional development if needed.

By implementing these five tips, healthcare facilities can create a welcoming and efficient onboarding process that helps travel nurses integrate smoothly, feel supported, and perform at their best.

Awarded Best of Staffing 2023, Jackson Nurse Professionals delivers flexible, scalable travel nurse staffing solutions to over 500 hospitals, outpatient clinics, ALF, SNF, and home health clients nationwide. In today’s highly competitive job market and climate of shifting demands, you’ll appreciate our ability to quickly deliver highly skilled travel nurses – ready to hit the ground running – in every setting and key specialties of care.

Get the travel nurse staffing solution designed to flex with your needs. Contact our Business Development Team.

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