I am moving to northern virginia in the next month. About two weeks ago I started applying (online) to several hospitals. I actually received a phone call the very next day after applying for a per diem position at the hospital which will be the closest to me. I called the recruiter back the next day, trying to sound both professional and excited about the possibility of working there. I have subsequently called back a total of three times, telling her when I would be home so as to facilitate communication (have left voice messages each time, never spoke with her)...Guess what? No phone calls since!!! I have a wealth of experience, a proudly earned RN to BSN degree, am involved in the state nurse association, etc. I have been a nurse for 12 years! Someone told me that maybe the hospitals don't want to hire per diem, but why do they post the positions online? I am getting concerned. Another hospital that I applied to, the med-surg recruiter's listed phone number is disconnected! I got her email and sent her a nice note and my resume- online the hospital said they want experienced nurses for per diem, which I am....I am getting paranoid about this, and very worried, because I need to make a living....I wanted per diem because I am in debt up to my eyeballs, plus I don't want to be part of a unit (secretly I am burnt out after having spent 4 years on a unit with serious politics and unprofessional work environment). Does anybody have any advice? How aggressive should I be? I am worried that there is something wrong with my resume? I don't think my current manager would say something negative, as I have been a good employee, but we are hemorrhaging nurses from my unit because of afore mentioned problems, maybe she is secretly angry with me! HELP!!!!!
Mar 28, '07
Well, MANY hospitals (especially corporate-run or large facilities) have applications online -you might look and see if any of the facilities you're interested in have this -or a job listing. That way you will know for sure that what you seek is actually available. Many times, you can apply directly for what you seek (if its available). If the recruiter is from an agency, I'd try another agency (or if you have, you need to just keep bugging them or ask to speak to a different agent if they are large enough to have such).
I would prefer to deal directly with the hospital.
Typically, it is not your manager, but human resources personnel who are actually contacted for reference -and in either case, they really cannot say much (beyond that you work there, and if you would or would not be 'rehireable' -anything beyond that can get them into too much hot water -legally, so most will keep it at that).
Now, if you really think your manager is causing the problem, its kind of underhanded (and I have done it once before -and found out that they really WERE 'black-listing' me (it was not a nursing job -this was almost twenty years ago, when I worked in the printing trade) -I had a friend pose (with script and had him rehearse it several times) as a shop foreman calling about my 'reference' -and he wrote what she (ex boss) said. I went to her that very day, and showed her her OWN words -and told her that if it didnt stop, she would see me in court.
Now, mine was drastic, and I had good reason to suspect what was happening (and I was correct) -but I won't go into those details.
If you really think they are black-listing, then do what I did. Odds are, they may well be in a hiring slump at this time as well -but be pro-active and find out directly from the facilities.
Mar 28, '07
I have learned the hard way that:
1. The jobs listed online often have no relationship to the jobs actually available.
2. The harder it is to reach the nurse recruiter, the worse it it is to work in that hospital.
3. Try to contact the nurse manager of the area you want to work in. If he/she likes you, they will make arrangements for an interview.
Last edit by bill4745 on Mar 28, '07
Mar 28, '07
Contact an agency in the area where you are moving. They will be very able to advise you of the needs of the area. If they sound too upbeat or too bored, contact another one. Gromit's idea has merit but use it as a last resort. Per diem is just that, some agencies are great to work for, others are just placing warm bodies into holes. Good luck.
Mar 28, '07
I worked in staffing and recruiting for eight years before changing to a career in healthcare. I wouldn't worry too much about your manager "black listing" you at this point. Think about it: you call a recruiter, submit your resume and they then call your manager first before talking to you about what kind of job you want? What a colossal waste of time. It doesn't happen. Recruiters will talk to you first, phone interview, you'll do a personal interview with the hiring manager/nurse manager and THEN they'll contact references.
So, let me ask you. Is your resume too wordy? Is your cover letter too long? Most recruiters (and this has been proven time and time again) will decide to call you or not within 15-30 seconds of reading your resume. Be succinct and clear and make sure it reads well. If you're having trouble getting callbacks after sending your resume, then your resume is either missing the mark or you're targeting the wrong places.
I was always leery about contacting candidates who were out of state or were living a long way away. It usually took much longer to hire them and many times there were obstacles that came up that prevented them from starting the job on time, and sometimes starting at all. It often times wasn't worth the hassle. You may find more responses if you list your upcoming northern Virginia address on your resume, not your current address. Also, if you live out of state, you'll want them to know that you've begun the process for getting licensed in Virginia (your post isn't clear if you're in Virginia currently) or that your current state is a reciprocity/compact licensure state with Virginia.
And, don't just target hospitals. Many of the best jobs aren't posted online at all. They often use agencies to fill them and aren't ever posted anywhere. Spread your target a bit: target hospitals AND outside recruiters/ agencies. Maximize your chances by contacting a variety of people, as many as you can. Many agencies LOVE having candidates who are out of the area. Having a fresh name and experienced nurse that hospitals haven't met yet is a huge advantage to agencies.
Without knowing specifics of your situation these are just some of the things that popped into my head. Best of luck. Let us know how it goes.
Mar 28, '07
I've gone through something similar. I'm a new grad who missed a lot of the new grad hiring programs at many hospitals because I had to have surgery right after graduation. So finding a job was kinda tricky.
One thing I've learned is some recruiters are really helpful, others don't have a clue. Some of them may be new to the job and don't even know who the managers are yet. In the latter case, it's better to contact the managers directly.
I just submitted a lot of applications and kept calling different people. I didn't bug the same people too much, I just cast a wider net. At first not much happened but of course, as soon as I got one job offer ... other offers started coming in.
It is unpredictable. One hospital that told me they weren't hiring called me a week later to say they were hiring. Another recruiter said I wasn't qualified then, two days later called back to say they were taking new grads afterall. It's always changing.
So, I wouldn't be discouraged. It just takes some time. You might not hear anything for a couple of weeks and then, all of the sudden, everybody wants you.
Last edit by Sheri257 on Mar 28, '07
Mar 28, '07
Thanks everyone for your responses! The funniest thing happened after I posted...I got a call from an agency in NOVA, I saw the 703 area code and thought that maybe it was a recruiter(not!). We talked for a while, at first I was a little resistant, but then I realized, heh- maybe this is a good thing. I actually worked for a per diem agency in Baltimore for over 7 years and made good money, better than staff pay. So, anyway, she told me that she has oodles of shifts in D.C. and some in NOVA (INOVA is apparently diff. to work for, and that is the hospital where the recruiter called me once and then no more). She basically promised me she could get me a contract in 48 hours...she has 10 for Georgetown right now!!! So, I feel much better. As far as I am concerned, it is the hospital(s) loss, not mine. I really hope that it works out, because, well- because. As far as my resume is concerned, I made it very concise and easy to read, professional, but with enough info to get who I am. The lady at the agency says that she has a number of nurses who have also gotten exasperated by the length of time it takes to get call backs, so I am not worrying anymore. I don't think my manager is saying something bad, but I can get other refs so I am not going to worry about it. Right now I just want to get the ball rollin:spin: along!!! Again, thanks everybody!!!! I appreciate the support.
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