What is a Per Diem Nursing Job and Should You Take It?

6 Incredible Per Diem Nursing Benefits You Need to Consider

Have you ever explored the world of per diem nursing jobs in your career as a nurse?  This is considered a lucrative avenue that can advance your nursing career as you get involved in a versatile and ever-changing workforce.

Per diem nurses are used by hospitals, clinics, and other healthcare facilities to meet shortages in staffing during times of an unusually high census, like a flu season or natural disasters.  It is less common than traditional full-time nursing and traveling nursing, but can provide higher compensation.

What Does It Mean to Be a Per Diem Nurse?

Per diem is a Latin word which means “by the day”.  Hence, nurses who work “per diem” work by the day or as needs present themselves.  They typically give their availability for a given time-frame to the hospital scheduler or an agency that books them to work as needed.

 As a per diem nurse, you work on-call depending on the facility or organization you are working with.  You can be called to cover for:

  • Sick calls
  • Vacation calls
  • Seasonal staffing coverage
  • Holiday coverage

How Much is Offered for a Per Diem Nursing Job?

Generally, hospitals pay their per diem nurses differently but when you work as a per diem nurse, you earn higher hourly rates than the full-time nurses.

If you work with an agency that hires per diem nurses, you will also receive different pay spending on location, specialty, and shift.  Per diem nurses who work through nurse staffing agencies can earn $30 to $40 per hour.

The national average salary for a per diem RN in the United States is $65,870.  You can even earn more for overnight shifts or in a specialized field.

The Benefits of Working as a Per Diem Nurse

Nursing is a profession in high demand which means there is job security in this career apart from being one of the noblest professions.  Here are six reasons reflecting the beauty of working as a per diem nurse:

  • Unmatched Flexibility

Per diem nursing provides temporary employment that could last one day to several days to fill in gaps in healthcare facilities.

You can work if you want to, say no if you can’t, work one per diem shift a month or several per week, your schedule and availability are all up to you.

You have complete control over your schedule.  You can be present during the most important celebrations and occasions as you choose not to work on those days.

  • Lucrative Pay

Working per diem nursing shifts is the perfect way to build up your bank account.  If you are in a city that pays full-time nurses high salaries, you would expect to be paid exceedingly high per diem rates as well.

This is true across all states and healthcare facilities accommodating per diem nurses because the employers do not have to offer benefits.

  • Less Nursing Burnout

Nurses get really stressed and burned out during duties because it is a mentally and physically demanding job.  The working environment for nurses is not always favorable nor comfortable.

By working as a per diem nurse, you have the option to choose different hospital shifts in your area which will give you space and changing scenes where you are less likely to experience fatigue and burnout.  A constantly changing environment can provide you mental stimulation that you need.

  • Ideal Work-life Balance

The flexibility of scheduling that per diem nursing provides options for you to spend more time doing other things that you enjoy.  You get to decide how often you work so you can also relax and enjoy life.

  • Expand Your Skill Set and Knowledge

Working in multiple facilities that offer different scenarios and clinical settings provides excellent opportunities for you to explore new technology and learn new skills so that you are not limited to just one particular specialty.

Ready to Take In a Per Diem Nursing Job?

If you have the time and want to earn extra money, considering working as a per diem nurse may be the answer.  While you spend your days making people feel better, you are allowed the flexibility most other jobs cannot provide while opening opportunities for you to enhance your nursing skills with a competitive wage.