By: Shari Dalton
I can’t help it – I have to reminisce for a minute and talk about the good old days of recruiting. For as much as things have stayed the same, so many things have changed in the last 15 years. So, if you would, allow me to take you back in time to a cubicle of long ago. I do not want to take away from the struggles that recruiters face today, but let me share with you some of the struggles we faced not so long ago.
When I began recruiting, many travelers didn’t have cell phones. We called home phones and left voice messages on answering machines. Texting wasn’t even a thing yet. LOL.
A lot of nurses didn’t know what “travel nursing” was, so you had to explain how it worked It was much scarier for them to consider it then as compared to now.
The internet wasn’t really a thing yet, either. We didn’t have lead sources that sent us nurses’ information. We found our nurses one of two ways. If our agency was really fancy, they purchased a licensure list from a state, and we called through it. This usually consisted of a literal stack of papers with names and numbers of registered nurses in whichever state was purchased. The second way we found nurses? Gasp…. we called into hospitals. “Hi, your ER Department please…. Hi ER department, do you guys use travelers? Oh, you do. Are any of them working? Can I talk to them please?” And you would hold your breath and hope that it wasn’t the nurse manager you were talking to. If it was, better believe she was going to chew your ass. If you were a really brave recruiter, you would fax over a job list with your name and phone number and hope that some interested nurses got their hands on it…again, holding your breath that the nurse manager did not see this!
When nurses had to fill out paperwork, we would FedEx them the application to complete, and then they’d fax it back with their resume. Most times we’d complete the skills checklist with them by phone. It could take weeks to put a profile together! And when you did have one and wanted to submit them for a position, you would have the FAX their profile over to the hiring manager at the hospital.
Once a nurse interviewed and was offered a position, we’d have to find a local pharmacy or UPS store where we could fax them a contract to sign and return and then we’d have to overnight them the rest of the paperwork and drug screen chain of custody to complete. I don’t know whether to laugh or cry as I type this!!
Nurses had to FAX in timesheets, you guys!! And you were lucky if you could read it the first time they faxed it in!
The point is, recruiting has NEVER been easy. Even with all of the tech advances that make this job easier, the best part about the job was and always will stay the same: the people; the relationships. There is no substitute for that; there’s no tech advancement for that. Thanks for taking a stroll down memory lane with me! I’d love to hear your favorite, and not-so-favorite memories!!