How to Transition to a Locum Tenens Job

How to Transition to Locum Tenens

You’re ready to make a big career move, transitioning from your current permanent position as a physician or advanced practitioner to locum tenens. And you’re already looking forward to the many benefits of the locum lifestyle: opportunities for travel, flexibility, a variety of clinical experiences, and the potential for higher pay.

But you still have questions about the process, and how to even get started with locum tenens.

Fortunately, making the switch from a permanent position to a locum tenens job is simpler than you might think. As you prepare to work contracts as a locum practitioner—at a different facility with different hours and different co-workers—here’s what you need to know to make the transition go smoothly.

Steps to Transition to Locum Tenens Work

As you set out to make the change from permanent staff to locum provider, the following steps will help you find success.

Focus on why you want to try locum tenens

Everyone has their own motivation for making the switch to locum work. Many locum tenens practitioners will tell you they were just ready for a change. They still feel called to provide excellent patient care, but they’re ready for some flexibility. They like the idea of short-term assignments. They like having the freedom to choose when they want to work, as well as where they want to work. And they like having options in a variety of settings, including medical practices, hospitals, urgent care, and outpatient clinics.

Locum physicians and advanced practitioners can elect to work part-time or full-time, too, depending on the gig. Plus, locum tenens practitioners typically earn very competitive salaries.

All of that may appeal to you, too. And as you determine what matters most, it can help you prioritize your job search.

Consider how becoming a locum provider will affect others

Your family, friends, co-workers, and patients will also be affected by your transition to locum tenens, especially if you plan to move to a new location. Some questions to ponder include:

  • Am I open to any location, or do I need to be close to family?
  • Should I take my family with me? And what about my pets?
  • Can I find an assignment in a location where I might want to move permanently?
  • Will I need to find a renter for my home, or sublease my apartment?
  • How will I transition my patients to new providers, or even close down my practice, if needed?

Polish your profiles and seek expert help

When considering locum work, don’t forget to tackle these important tasks, especially if it’s been a few years since you thought about your resume or your online presence: 

  • Set personal and professional goals to guide your search
  • Update your resume and/or CV
  • Update and polish online profiles—or create new ones, if need be
  • Find a reputable locum tenens staffing agency that can direct your job searches, through networking and your own research

The benefits of working with AMN Healthcare

Working with a locum tenens agency like AMN Healthcare will make the transition to locum tenens as simple as possible. You’ll get matched to a recruiter, who can walk you through the steps you need to take and the types of positions available.

Your career consultant will review your goals and help you find a locum tenens job that meets your requirements. They can even help prepare you for interviews. Then they’ll connect you with the licensing and credentialing experts who will make sure you are prepared to practice in the state and facility where you want to work.

AMN Healthcare has more than 30 years of experience with locum tenens placements, and a nationwide network of clients that gives you access to numerous assignment choices with excellent compensation. They also offer generous benefits, including paid travel expenses and housing accommodations, free continuing education courses, and relocation assistance.

Supporting locum clinicians throughout the job search and placement process takes a true team effort. One provider who has worked with a few locum tenens agencies put it this way: “I can unequivocally state that AMN Healthcare is the ‘best in the business!’ Their account representatives are great at finding assignments, as well as following through with these assignments to completion. Their credentialing department is excellent and timely. The logistics coordinators are ‘the best’ at keeping up with your travel needs as well as your travel preferences."

The bottom line: you’ll have access to experts who can answer your questions and get you what you need to succeed.

Explore Locum Tenens Jobs

Ready to get started in locum tenens?

Are you ready to reap the benefits of the locum lifestyle? To begin the process, simply complete the form on the right of this page and one of our experienced locum tenens recruiters will get back to you shortly.

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