The COVID-19 pandemic showed just how important healthcare workers are, from doctors and nurses to pharmacists, and care home assistants. However, it’s not only full-time staff who are key to the medical community – locum workers are also a vital part of the healthcare system. Read on to find out more about this type of work, and why it matters so much.
What Is A Locum Worker?
A locum is a person who fills a rota gap on a temporary basis. Although most commonly seen in the healthcare industry, you can find locum workers in educational establishments and several other workplaces too. Locums might be brought in to cover a period of just a few days while a member of staff is off sick or on compassionate leave, or they could join an employer for several months to cover someone’s maternity leave or period of sabbatical.
People choose locum work over permanent employment for many reasons. They may wish to experience a variety of different workplaces and job roles before settling on a career option, use it as a way to earn money while studying, or simply enjoy the greater freedom this type of work affords them.
Why Are Locum Workers So Important?
Locums are key to the healthcare industry in several ways. Without them, it would often be impossible to deal with unexpected staff shortages without a decline in levels of service. From a locum dispenser in a pharmacy to a locum doctor in a GP surgery, these workers fill gaps at short notice and ensure that patients experience the same high levels of care as they always do.
Not only that, having a locum on your team can drive improvements in the workplace more generally. That’s because they tend to have lots of experience working in a wide variety of locations and types of healthcare facilities, which gives them a broad range of knowledge and lots of insight into different working practices and techniques. As such, they can make suggestions to boost efficiency and customer service that existing staff members have never come across before.
What Are The Benefits Of Being A Locum Worker?
Being a locum worker yourself can offer many advantages. Some of the most notable benefits include:
- Flexibility – you get to choose when you work and how many hours you do, making it easy to fit your employment around any existing commitments such as family or study
- Variety – you get to work in lots of different locations and types of workplace, enabling you to try out numerous career paths before choosing the best one for you
- Networking – you get to meet and work with lots of people in different cities and medical facilities, which is not only great for making friends but can also help you to form valuable professional connections
- Skills growth – you get to work with a diverse range of people in different environments, enabling you to learn new skills and techniques at a faster rate than you normally would by staying in one place
- Job satisfaction – you get to enjoy a greater work-life balance and take employment breaks whenever you need to, which can be a useful way to avoid burnout and keep your passion for healthcare burning brightly