Getting Your First Nursing Job

Getting Your First Nursing Job

One industry that seems to be weathering the unstable job environment these days is healthcare. With jobless millions still struggling to find work and unemployment rates continuing to rise drastically, it is good to know that there are still a few lucky ones who can take advantage of opportunities that don’t always come by easily. If you are a nursing graduate still trying to snag their first job, then there’s plenty of hope for you yet.

Recent job surveys done on some of the top online job aggregators revealed that the healthcare industry is one of those industries that are hiring the most right now. Positions for registered nurses in particular, are on top of the list with at approximately 175,000 job postings at the moment but the thing about these job postings is that the results don’t always reflect the precise number of jobs up for grabs. There are also instances when some occupations, like the ones for registered nurses include other titles. For example, registered nurses will include staff RNs, operating room RNs, oncology RNs, etc.

Despite these numbers showing who exactly is leading the pack right now, there are still a significant number of nursing graduates who can’t find nursing jobs. Job hunting can be a tricky business because you never know exactly what employers are looking for aside from stellar credentials and getting hired as a nurse for instance, is more than just striking the right balance between experience and skill. It also means knowing what you’re getting into eyes wide open and understanding the demands of the job like late night shifts, working on weekends and willingness to work for any unit when needed.

The truth is, while there are indeed more job positions up for grabs, it doesn’t mean that every town, city or state is in need of nurses. Also, just because there is always a need for nurses, it doesn’t mean hospitals will hire just about anyone. While it is only natural for employees to have their own demands and expectations, scoring your first nursing job will mean setting aside your own demands and expectations for that of what the employer wants and expects of you.

For example, if you are asked to go on late night shifts on your first week, including the weekends, you don’t say you can’t do it. Trying to get your own way at this point isn’t advisable especially if you want to get a move on in your career. No one is going to shift mountains for you so you may as well do what is expected of you and learn from the experience rather than gripe about it.

So in addition to making sure the employer sees you as someone flexible and willing to learn the ropes, another thing you need to ace to get hired for your first nursing job is the job interview. To be shortlisted is reason enough to celebrate because this means your CV impressed your potential employer but what they need to be impressed about next is your understanding of the job position you are applying for and what you can bring to the table, so to speak. Never mind you got straight As or graduated with honors – what the employer needs to know and see are the skills you have and their relevance to the job at hand.

But perhaps the most important thing you need to do to get hired is to learn as much as you can about the organization and the job. Read the job description carefully and understand what the employer is looking for and check it against your qualifications. Honestly, nothing frustrates employers more than job applicants who fail to read the description and work out what they need. Also, remember that the interview is a two-way process. You also get to know if both the job and the organization are for you and fit in with your career goals. Come dressed to impress but make sure it is appropriate for the job you are applying for, along with your best accessory: confidence.

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