Things sure have changed a lot since I graduated from nursing school. When I got my degree, I interviewed at seven places and had seven job offers as a result. Unfortunately, that is not much of a reality anymore.
A national survey found that 59% of new BSN graduates had job offers at the time of graduation and 89% had a job by four to six months after graduation. The same percentages are no longer true for a nursing diploma or associates degree today. In fact, if you attend a school that’s not NLN accredited, you might have an even harder time in seeking employment. Due to issue in the graduate’s past, some boards are placing new graduates on probation even before they have had a chance to get into the work force.
This is not the same world that I practiced in. However, there are certain ways that you can set yourself up for success in finding a job.
First, if you’re trying to find a position in a state with a large nurse population, you may have trouble. You might want to think outside the box and look in more rural areas for a nursing job.
Second: instead of sending applications online, start networking and meet other nurses who eventually can recommend you. Try to find out who is the decision-maker in charge of hiring at a facility and try to find a way to get to know that person. These old fashion face-to-face techniques work well but in this era of computers and internet, they somehow seem to have been forgotten.
What distinguishes you from other nurses? What makes you special? What makes you stand out? What makes you different? Why should they hire you?
One of the best ways to find a job is to make an impression. Think about what unique gifts that you have which you can bring to a job and share them! How can you make yourself unforgettable so that a potential employer will want to hire you? Don’t be afraid to “toot your own horn!” If you don’t toot it, who will?
Are you a member of employment focused sources such as LinkedIn and are you using those venues? But note that social sites such as Facebook, despite their overall popularity, actually do little, if anything, to help you find a job.
When seeking employment, consider that search to be a full-time job. Are you spending eight hours a day looking for a position? If you’re not actively looking, how can you say that there are no jobs out there to be had?
It is a new era requiring that you be creative to let your talent shine. That will make all the difference.
Good luck in your quest.