In healthcare today, you have a lot of options when it comes to your career. One of those options is contract work. While contract healthcare jobs have always made up a significant portion of the healthcare market, hiring for these roles has really accelerated in recent years. At the same time, these opportunities have become a popular option for a variety of providers.
What’s driving the growth of contract healthcare jobs
There are a variety of trends contributing to the growth of healthcare contract work. At a high level, these include:
- Staffing shortages: Staffing shortages across a multitude of healthcare disciplines—including physicians, nursing, and allied health—have primarily driven the demand for contract staff. Facilities have utilized this solution to help fill in the gaps and help provide continuity of care to patients.
- The pandemic: In the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic, staffing shortages have been particularly exacerbated—and contract hiring has been widely adopted by facilities to quickly address high staff turnover, better support full-time staff, and help meet the high demand for care. This has continued as organizations transition back to core operations and face critical staffing shortages.
- Community needs: From school health services to local vaccination programs, there are many community initiatives that drive a seasonal demand for contract healthcare staff.
Benefits of healthcare contract work
With demand for providers so high, you may find yourself asking, “why should I consider healthcare contract jobs?” Some of you may even think it is not stable or beneficial. Well, that is simply not true! There are several benefits of healthcare contract work you may not be aware of.
Contract healthcare jobs are a great way to get your foot in the door, meet new people, and explore different settings. This can be especially valuable if you are newer to your field or interested in making a career transition. Every contract can give you a sense of your preferred work environment, as well as the areas of healthcare you’d like to specialize in.
Healthcare recruitment companies can help increase your access to these opportunities— whether it’s working in a hospital, clinic, school, practice, rehab facility, etc. Recruiters have direct relationships with hiring managers, and can help you get your foot in the door. Furthermore, many healthcare companies will hire a contractor before they commit to a direct hire. And in many cases, these roles can be indefinite contracts that have no specific end date. In both these scenarios, a contract role can be a great path to landing your dream job.
Contract work also gives you more flexibility over your schedule. From per diem shifts and part-time hours to short-term and ongoing contracts, you can build a work schedule that fits into your needs.
Increased earning potential
Many healthcare contract jobs command a high hourly rate that is very competitive with market trends. When working with a staffing company to find contract work, you may also have access to an expanded list of competitive benefits. Depending on the type of role, this may include a travel/housing stipend, tuition reimbursement, continuing education, as well as health, dental, and retirement benefits.
Additionally, per diem work is a great way to pick up some extra hours and earn supplemental income to meet your financial goals.
Given that the healthcare industry is always evolving, care providers need to regularly keep up with new techniques, technologies, and policies to expand their skillset in their fields. Contract healthcare jobs can open a new world of opportunities to learn. By changing jobs more frequently, for example, you can gain exposure to different types of procedures or technologies. You could also become more experienced with different patient populations.
At the same time, healthcare contract jobs can help you keep your skills sharp if you are in between jobs or taking a break from the workforce. The flexibility contract work offers can help you keep your resume up-to-date, while you figure out what you want to do long-term.
Try before you buy
One of the great things about contract work is that it doesn’t necessarily need to be a long-term commitment. While there are certainly on-going opportunities available, it is much simpler to transition to a new role if you are not happy.
While this may make you worry about job security, the reality is that this isn’t very different from a direct hire role. Permanency is never a guarantee. Partnering with a healthcare recruitment company can help you manage this process. Before your contract even ends, your recruiter will be working to find you your next great role! Interested in working with Tandym Health on your job search? Get started with us today!