New Nurses: What to Do When No One Is Hiring

May 29, 2013 in Nursing TIps

Person Looking for Work

With the excitement and buzz around the nursing careers and other healthcare professions continuing to grow in demand all across the country, it may be hard to believe that anyone graduating with a degree in nursing would have trouble securing employment. But it does happen and more frequently than the general public realizes.

Too many students in nursing school have the false assumption that as soon as they’re ready to hit the workforce, they’ll find themselves in a dream job in no time. It is important to understand that there are factors in place that could make solidifying a career as a nurse right out of school more challenging than one would have thought.

Have you graduated but, to your dismay, encountered a lot of difficulty in finding work? Below are a few helpful suggestions that can knock some of those obstacles down in order to get your foot in the door and on the right path:

Be Flexible. Really, Really Flexible

Who wouldn’t want to get their first choice when it comes to which hospital unit to work at? Sadly, all too many newly graduated nurses insist on not settling for less than their first or second choice. The idea of roving–or “moving”–from unit to unit doesn’t sound very appealing to most people but it is a way to secure a position on the playing field.

If there aren’t any openings for the dream occupation you’ve been searching for, find a unit that is available and jump in. Of course this doesn’t mean picking a unit you’ll end up hating–that should be avoided at all costs. Many hospitals are picky about the graduates they take on and if they know you’re flexible, it improves the odds of getting picked over the steep competition and–most important–gaining job security.

Bide Your Time

Roving units to find an open slot to slide into may not put you in your dream job right away but it will give you the hospital experience necessary to be considered for open positions in the future. There is nothing wrong with falling back on a plan B or even plan C. The more stubborn nursing graduates end up wasting time and energy throwing themselves at every job opening for their top choices, which doesn’t necessarily guarantee successful results.

Choosing to rove units is a prime example of working smarter and not harder. As mentioned above, this approach means not only getting hired by a hospital but getting to acquire the day-to-day skills and experience that will turn a person into an ideal candidate once their desired position becomes available.

Additionally, by biding time and putting the best foot forward in whatever unit you find yourself in, it gives ample opportunity to build working relationships with other nurses and hospital staff. This could lead to valuable networking, as well as create a group of trusted professionals that could be used for letters of recommendation or as references.

In many instances, nurses that wind up in other units find that they end up enjoying the work and choose to remain there.

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