What's the big thing about "1 year?"

  1. Evenin' all,
    What's the reason for getting one year of experience before going on to anything else? I'm working on getting my one year and will stick it out - I'd LOVE to move now, but I've heard so much about getting my one year of experience in the medical field that I'm staying put till my one year mark. But what's the deal with it? I mean, I definately know more now, am WAAAAAY more prepared than I was 9 months ago, but what's the "magic" so to speak of getting one year?

    Thanks for your thoughts!
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  2. 15 Comments

  3. by   AlbertaBlue
    Hello,
    What I would say is that "one year" can represent many different things. "One" is really an arbitrary number that I think is meant to demonstrate a few things, for instance: 1) that you have stuck-it-out to learn all of the basic skills that you will need to work anywhere else as a nurse, 2) your managers are spending money on your training...in other words, you are an investment to them...why train you for a few months if you're just going to jump to another job...sticking around for at least a year will secure you a better letter of reference for another job (they won't see you as a job-hopper; and managers tend to get leary of hiring job-hoppers!), 3) the first year of practice is really the time in which you become more confident as a rookie nurse...there is so much to learn that you really need to have consistent things in your environment to make it easier for you to focus on your nursing technical competencies...in other words, there are some things that you will pick up fairly immediately, but there are other things that will take more time for you to get comfortable with. So, why leave after four of five months when you haven't really become proficient or comfortable...imagine having to meet a whole new set of co-workers when you haven't really become good at your job (yuck...stressful!), 4) it instills a sense of completion...after about a year or so, you'll feel pretty good about yourself as a practicing nurse...you'll feel more competent and stronger at making decisions. There are really many more things about your first year of nursing that will make you feel better about having stayed. Completing a year anywhere also seems to be about loyalty. Anyhow...these are just some thoughts. If you feel ready to move on then maybe you are! Good luck!
  4. by   chuck1234
    Quote from stillpressingon
    Evenin' all,
    What's the reason for getting one year of experience before going on to anything else? I'm working on getting my one year and will stick it out - I'd LOVE to move now, but I've heard so much about getting my one year of experience in the medical field that I'm staying put till my one year mark. But what's the deal with it? I mean, I definately know more now, am WAAAAAY more prepared than I was 9 months ago, but what's the "magic" so to speak of getting one year?

    Thanks for your thoughts!
    It looks better on your resume!
  5. by   TazziRN
    It takes about a year before a new nurse is fully competent and comfortable.
  6. by   stillpressingon
    Thanks for your responses; I really appreciate them. I guess one of the things I'm also thinking is it's one year, but at the same time, it's "only one year" - to me it seems in some ways like such a short amount of time. Is it still readily acceptable to change jobs after one year? Does "only" staying one year raise questions in an interviewers mind about, hey, do you plan on only staying at this (new) job for one year, or are you planning on stickin around longer? Hope this makes sense. I'm going to be looking for a new job mid-summer, so I'm prepairing my resume now...Thanks!
  7. by   llg
    Your question about "how it looks" is a legitimate one. If you leave after only 1 year, it will raise a question in the prospective employer's mind. One year is usually not enough time for your employer to recoup the educational costs of a good new grad orientation program. The interviewer may not ask the question directly, but they will be wondering why you did not stay in that first job longer. Be prepared to give them a reasonable answer to their question -- even if they don't ask it out loud.

    On the other hand ... the fact that you stayed in a situation that was not perfect for you for a whole year shows the prospective employer that you are willing and able to "stick it out" and give things a chance to improve if they are not perfect. That says something positive about you. Even though the job was not a good enough fit for you to stay for very long -- you did stay long enough to give it a good shot and didn't "cut and run" at the first sign of imperfection.

    So ... while leaving a job at the 1 year mark is not a wonderful thing to have on your resume, it's not the kiss of death either. Be prepared to provide the prospective employer with a reassuring image of yourself as someone who is NOT wanting to flit from job to job on a whim, but as someone who is appreciative of the opportunities that your first job provided and as someone who has successfully made that transition from student to professional -- and who is now ready to make a longer committment to a job that is a better fit.

    Happy job hunting,
    llg
  8. by   Gromit
    I agree with the above. One year is plenty -up to a point. If your resume' begins to look like a 'whos who' of places with continual job changes after only a year, THEN it will begin to look 'bad'. But nurses these days are a transient bunch, and its not uncommon to see them jump from place to place. I guess it depends on what you are trying to achieve. I've been at my current facility for 3 years and counting (I have no plans to leave) but before I came to them, I went through three hospitals in two years.
  9. by   mom2michael
    Sure the 1 year mark looks good, but don't stay miserable just to obtain that mark. Life is short, you and your family and your life are far more important than a job. If you like your job and can tolerate though - it does look the best the stay there than magical mark of 1 year.

    I left my 1st nursing job after 2 months. Long story short, I never wanted to do M/S and "settled" because I was told I had to. I had every intention of doing my time required to come back to my old facility, get a job as an RN and stay forever. Fate however, lead me back to that facility this last week and there is a new manager who is 100% OK with me starting right now, with <3 full months of RN experience. So...off I go....because I don't want to be miserable any longer than necessary.
  10. by   RN BSN 2009
    It's just one more year of your life!
  11. by   Gromit
    Yep. Time you will never be able to get back again! Life is too short to be miserable.
  12. by   NextSummer
    Quote from AlbertaBlue
    Hello,
    ...2) your managers are spending money on your training...in other words, you are an investment to them...why train you for a few months if you're just going to jump to another job......

    What if the training period was less than two weeks?
  13. by   Gromit
    huh? What do you expect to learn in two weeks? Certainly nothing thats worth a years' worth of conscription. Each case according to its merits. When I took the critical care transition program, which was about a month long, we signed that we would be with the facility for X amount of time -or have to pay a pro-rated cost of class. Since I fully intended to be at the facility for longer than this amount of time, this wasn't anything to worry about. But if conditions were such that I couldn't stand the thought of staying that long, I'd gladly pay the fee and leave.
    Lets be reasonable here. There really isn't anything they can do to you if you don't want to stay.
  14. by   AlbertaBlue
    Hmmm...well...I would suggest that if you are training at some thing for a two week period it will do nothing to balance out the year of training that we were originally talking about in this posting...I would imagine that the two weeks you are thinking about has more to do with learning something that ultimately affects those who already have a solid background in their nursing competencies - in other words, two weeks of training is usually afforded to those who already know what they are doing as nurses...rookies usually need more time to learn which way is up. An investment of resources to truly equip a nurse with all that they will have to know to be competent requires more of a financial investment on the part of the employer, and usually takes more time.
    Quote from NextSummer
    What if the training period was less than two weeks?

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