I talk to a lot of therapists who are new to the travel arena, many who are recent grads that are new to therapy in general. I often get the question “How do I become a travel therapist?” or “How do I find a travel therapy job?” This is the most basic outline of how I describe the process to becoming a travel therapist. Definitely do not skip over #1.
1. Determine your “Why” and if travel therapy is right for you.
Travel therapy definitely is not for everybody. Traveling can be very stressful. You can be working in a rural location thousands of miles from home. Your productivity expectation may be high. Determine why it is that you want to travel and set some realistic goals for yourself as a traveler. Read more on Why Become a Traveling Therapist
2. Locate a recruiter and agency (or multiple recruiters and agencies)
This is probably the hardest part of starting out. You need to find an agency and recruiter to work through that you can trust, communicate with and work with professionally. You do not have to limit yourself to one agency, think of yourself as a “Free Agent” until you sign a contract. For more, read How to Find the Best Travel Therapy Agency for You
3. Job Search
The job search to finding a travel therapy job is going to be done by your agency and recruiter. When looking for a job your recruiter will search for jobs based on the information provided by you. It is your responsibility to let you recruiter know states that you are licensed in, locations you want to work, settings you want to work in and vice versa. If there is a place that you do not want to go or a setting that you do not want to work in that is important to tell them as well.
4. Submit for Jobs
If a recruiter brings a job to you that matches your needs/wants and you are interested in it; your recruiter will submit you to the position. Prior to submission you should know an approximate pay package and details of the facility.
If the client is interested in your resume you will likely be contacted for a phone interview
5. Phone Interview
A phone interview occurs between you and a person from your potential new contract. The interviewer may be a direct manager or a higher level regional manger. During the phone interview you will be given the opportunity to ask questions regarding the position and you will be asked questions about yourself and your skills.
A sample question bank that I use for interviews:
After a phone interview you will be contacted by your agency/recruiter if you have been accepted or rejected for the travel therapy job. If you have been accepted the position you have very little time to decide if you want to accept or not. Travel jobs move quickly and most places will want a response to an offer with in 24 hours. If you decide to decline the contract you would then be beginning your search again from Step #3.
7. Sign a Contract
You will be given a contract to review and sign. READ IT, review it and ask questions. If something does not seem right ask about it. Contracts can be revised and modified.
8. Go on to new adventure!
Once your accept a position and sign a contract you may be expected to start anywhere from a couple of days to a couple of weeks. Be prepared to move quickly and go to your new assignment!
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