I'm a new nurse, just one year out of school and do not have the experience you do but I can relate to what you are going through and would like to share my story:
In college you are continually told about the nursing shortage and basically made to think that you can prance into any hospital as a new grad and they will be on their knees begging for you to work in any department you choose. Well . . .as graduation began to approach I started going on interviews with just that attitude, going to be a BSN . . .they need me! So, my first couple of interviews I was very casual, dressed in scrubs
(on my way home from clinical) for one interview, and a very casual sundress for another interview. I was real honest and basically told the NM's that I was shopping around for the right fit for me as a new nurse. I didn't hear from either manager and when I called HR back a couple of weeks later I was told that I wasn't being considered for the jobs . . well!! I started to get a little nervous and so I called my sister for advice about job hunting and interviewing (she is an 18 year veteran RN).
She basically sat me down and told me I was going about things all wrong. It all has to do with how you package yourself. So, can I give a couple of suggestions ?? I know they have worked for me. After taking my sis's advice I had 3 simultaneous job offers as a new grad. I recently interviewed for a new job at an outlying facility and received an offer within 2 days of the interview with only 10 months nursing experience (using these same suggestions) So, here goes . . .
1. Dress professionally
-Power suit, pantihose, pumps (at least dress pants/blazer), hair, makeup, jewelry simple and neat
2. Bring a professionally typed resume with you
-if you have microsoft word you can use the resume' wizard
3. Play the cheerleader
-Be careful of the "I'm just looking around" attitude (NM's hate this)
-Act as if the job you are interviewing for is the one you want (even if you are thinking "no way")
-Make as many positive comments as you can about the floor/facility when taken on a tour
4. Be positive about past job experiences.
-Be careful of saying things like "I'm tired of ICU", "I just need a change" etc. Talk about how much you have gained from your past job experiences and how you are "torn" about leaving, but that you want to challenge yourself and expand yourself as a nurse . . to be a more well rounded RN. . .lifelong learner . .etc.
5. Send a thank you note after the interview (same day if possible)
-Emphasize things that impress you about the job, and that you are extremely interested in the position and will call the HR representative in a week to see if a decision has been made. Don't be discouraged if the interviewer suggested an ICU position instead. Be gracious and thank her for suggesting ICU and showing confidence in you as an ICU nurse, but repeat your (well thought out) reason for desiring a career change and that you would love to have the opportunity to expand your horizons in her department and believe you can bring much to the position etc.
These are just some tips that have worked for me. You obviously have made some successful career changes (from med/surg to CCU to ICU etc) so please no offense if you have been trying or doing these things!