The Ultimate Side Gig
LONG -TIME CONSULTANT IS A GEM IN ANY SETTING
By Heidi Williams, Recruiter
It’s National Nutrition Month, and this year’s theme is Put Your Best Fork Forward. You may have read our post earlier this month by Registered Dietitian Rose Ann about what National Nutrition Month means to her. Today, we share our version – what Rose Ann means to National Nutrition Month, and to the field of dietetics.
Rose Ann is one of the original Dietitians on Demand consultants. The company, born in 2005, started picking up speed and spreading regionally in 2008. Rose Ann came on in 2009 and immediately became a go-to not only for the company, but for more than 14 clients in the Maryland/DC area.
“Rose Ann has always been willing to take on anything I called her for,” Ryan Davis, Dietitians on Demand President said. He did all the recruiting, hiring and sales himself in 2009.
“It was like Charlie’s Angels,” Rose Ann said, laughing. She’d hear Ryan on the end of the phone telling her about a facility the needs a RD, and off she’d go. “Things weren’t as computerized then,” Rose Ann said.
Now of course Dietitian’s on Demand’s job postings are all online and email notifications are sent out about openings. But for Rose Ann, it’s still a call from a recruiter that tells her where to go, often at the request of a client she’s seen before.
“Rose Ann has been our “go to” dietitian for vacation and interim coverage for the past several years,” JoAnne, a Director of Nutrition Services in Northern Virginia, said. “She has worked in at least three of our centers and is always reliable and provides good communication regarding the residents.”
No matter where Rose Ann has consulted – 36 assignments and 14 facilities in eight years, by the way – she’s always asked to return.
“I keep getting asked back because I think they’re comfortable with the work I do,” Rose Ann said. “That’s how I measure myself.”
Rose Ann has been a registered dietitian for 36 years. She has a regular full-time position at a large hospital in Maryland, where she’s been for 20 years. And because they love her just as much as Dietitians on Demand does, she has a flexible schedule. This allows her to work anywhere from 20 to 40 hours per week for Dietitians on Demand. She’s worked in every setting you can imagine: inpatient, outpatient, long term care, giant hospitals, tiny community hospitals, dialysis, home health.
“I like going to new places and starting new things,” she said. She even says she doesn’t mind doing the things no one else likes to do.
“The staff enjoyed having Rose Ann as part of their team. She volunteered to cover Sundays which made the staff so happy that they only had to work one weekend day in the month of February,” said Erin, the Director of Clinical Nutrition at a long term care facility in Baltimore. “She was a fabulous addition to our team!”
It takes a special blend of skills to be able to step into the role of a consultant dietitian. Experience, strong judgement skills and the ability to work without guidance.
“I remember one time I showed up at a long term care facility, the administrator met me at the door, handed me a password and told me they hadn’t had a RD there for a month,” Rose Ann said. “She told me ‘do whatever you can.’”
And that’s exactly what Rose Ann did. She went straight to nursing, reviewed the latest weights and got to work.
“She’s willing, professional, skilled and has an incredible work ethic,” Ryan said. “Rose Ann really is the perfect dietitian.”