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Permanent Placement or Contract: Which is Right for You?

Healthcare used to be strictly about full-time positions. You could work in a hospital, medical practice, or ancillary provider and perhaps even retire from there years down the road. But employment arrangements in the medical field have changed along with the clinical and administrative protocols that affect your job daily. Today, you have the option of contract healthcare employment or permanent placement. What’s the difference, and what’s right for you?

What’s the Difference Between Contract and Permanent Placement in Healthcare?

Permanent placement and contract jobs are two different types of employment arrangements. Permanent placement usually refers to a full-time, salaried worker, while a contract is a temporary arrangement with a start and end date. Here are the differences between contract and permanent placement jobs.

Permanent Placement

Permanent placement, also known as direct hire or permanent employment, refers to a long-term relationship between an employer and an employee. In permanent placement, the employee is usually full-time, salaried, and employed by the company they work for. They are entitled to the same benefits as other permanent employees, such as vacation, sick leave, and healthcare coverage. The permanent placement has no set end date.

Contract Job

Contract jobs typically have a start and an end date, which is one area where these short-term arrangements differ from permanent placement. In these jobs, the employee signs up to work on a specific project or task for a set time. Contract workers are not considered employees by the company they’re working in and do not receive the same benefits as permanent employees. Contract workers may be hired by the staffing agency that contracts with the employer company. That staffing agency may even offer the contract worker benefits and other perks. Contract jobs are subject to employer needs and may be renewed, extended, or canceled.

Generally, though, while permanent placement is viewed as more stable, there is an increasing demand in healthcare for contract employees. Becker’s Hospital Review reports the demand for contract labor in healthcare increased by 500% in the fall of 2021. As we enter 2023, these numbers are projected to remain about 20% higher than 2019.

Which is Better For You: Permanent Placement or a Contract?

It’s difficult to say whether permanent placement or contract work is better as the choice between these two work arrangements depends on individual circumstances and preferences. Some healthcare workers prefer the stability and benefits of permanent employment, while others may prefer the flexibility and variety of contract work. Here are some factors to consider when choosing between permanent placement and contract work:

Job Security

Permanent placement typically offers more long-term job security. Contract work is typically short-term, with or without a set end date.


Permanent placement in healthcare offers benefits. However, so does contract work. In many instances, the contract staffing company offers benefits to their temp workers.


Permanent placement comes with a salary, while contract workers have an hourly rate or a fixed fee for their services. However, contract work pays more. The 2022 average rate for healthcare contractors was three times higher than that of permanent workers doing the same or similar jobs.

Explore Our Opportunities

So, which is better for you: Permanent placement or healthcare contracting? Bluebird Staffing is proud to offer both contract and permanent placement services in the healthcare field. Check out our available opportunities, and talk with our team about how we can help grow your professional career.

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