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Is Per Diem Nursing for You? Weigh the Pros and Cons

Three female nurses

Content courtesy of IntelyCare You may have heard plenty of reasons why some nurses prefer traditional, full-time staff nursing and why others prefer per diem nursing positions through a staffing agency. And you might have your own thoughts about which option is right for you. If you're considering per diem nursing but aren't sure if you should make the switch, consider some of the significant benefits and drawbacks of these roles.

Pros of Per Diem Nursing

1) Enjoy Schedule Flexibility

The major benefit of per diem nursing is schedule flexibility. When you miss out on time with family and friends because of your work commitments or when you've been held over time because agency staff could not fill those last-minute shifts, you'll have a newfound appreciation for this perk. Instead of working weekend shifts and working overtime, you'll be able to spend time with family and doing the things that make you happy. Enjoying nursing on your own terms can help you retain the passion for nursing that inspired you to be a caregiver in the first place.

2) Choose Where You Work

Nurses often turn from full-time nursing to per diem work when they feel burned out. Much of that burnout comes from the conditions at the facilities where they work, whether it's low staffing levels or an overall stressful working environment. Tech-enabled per diem nursing jobs allow you to pick at which facilities you work, which is great for those looking for some variety and experience in different settings.

3) Create More "Me" Time

The flexibility you get with per diem nursing allows you more opportunities to do the things you enjoy such as getting back into an activity or hobby you once pursued. Maybe it will allow you more time to spend with your loved ones or start a side gig.

Cons of Per Diem Nursing

1) Inconsistent Paychecks

Depending on your employer, consistent work might not be readily available in per diem nursing roles. If per diem nursing is your main source of income, then this option may not be right for you due to the uncertainty of when you get your next paycheck.

2) Decreased Job Security

For many, having the freedom to choose when you work is priceless. But for others, not knowing when or if you'll get called in for a shift is a hefty cost. When using a system that relies on a last-minute phone call, there is no guarantee that you'll be able to work whenever you want.

3) Less Community Support and Benefits

Having a constant source of support and community while working as a nurse can be invaluable. That support is far easier to find when working at a full-time nursing facility. Many nurses also appreciate the additional benefits that full-time positions provide such as benefits, consistent pay, and a set schedule. So, which option is right for you? With traditional agency staffing, the risks of per diem work may seem too great to outweigh its benefits. But not all per diem nursing opportunities are created equally. Emerging tech-enabled nursing gigs provide nurses with a new way to work that gives them the freedom to browse and pick up shifts from their phone, filter by shift preference, and work when and where they want. What's more, nursing apps that are most in tune with what nurses want have embraced W2 benefits, so nursing professionals can enjoy the perks of per diem nursing, like schedule flexibility, with all the benefits and security that come with a full-time job. Tech-enabled nursing options empower nursing professionals with more options to make more choices in their nursing career.     With IntelyCare, you don't have to choose between a work-life balance and great pay and benefits - you can have it all. Want to see for yourself? Join the movement and become an IntelyPro! Check out more content from IntelyCare here.