Monday, July 30, 2018

Pro's and Con's Of Working Per-diem

Hi everyone, first I would like to welcome any new or seasoned therapists (occupational or not) to my page. I know this blog title may insist that it is only about OT however I feel many professions could benefit from this post.
This past year I have gone through 3 different types of paid employment work.  I have been full-time, per diem and contract.  I wanted to describe a little bit about my experiences with all three and to discuss my pros and cons.  However, I will divide them up into little mini blogs because I do not want to give you so much to read in one post.

Per Diem:

Per diem work is also known as per day work.  This is typically a position where you are called in to work when an organization needs you.  Currently I work per diem at an assisted living facility in New York.  In my case, I initially provided my agency the hours and days I am available to work and hoped they would call me in if they needed me.  However, the first few months they did not call me at all.  I thought they forgot about me.  However, eventually they called me in one day and I worked for about four hours.  After that, they didn’t call me back again for a few weeks.  With that being said here are my pro’s and cons for being per diem.


THE PAY! As a per diem employee I receive a specific rate per hour.  Additionally, as a per diem employee you typically receive a higher pay rate than you would a staff employee.  This is because it’s used almost as an incentive for you cover someone last minute or to accept overflow of cases.

Flexibility! Right now, I set my own schedule.  I typically work late afternoon into the evenings and once a month on the weekends.  (PS: working weekends aren’t so bad, the place is usually quiet, there is less traffic on the road and parking is a breeze).

Experience! My per diem job is in addition to another one, therefor I am able to learn a new setting and work with a different population.


No Sick Days! You don’t work, you don’t get paid.

No Mentorship! Being per diem, I usually have to learn things quickly or on my own.  While other workers will get pad for training I will not.  Additionally, there is usually no time for any supervision especially since I come in the afternoon and evenings when most staff have already left for the day. 

No Consistency!  Some weeks I work every single afternoon/evening.  However there are times when I do not get called in as much or even at all.

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