Off the books job experience issue

  1. 0
    So I am a (soon to be) new grad applying for my first nursing job.

    But I am having a problem with my most recent job (over a year there) being off the books. Had I been younger, I would just left it off, but im in my late 20s and this is my 3rd degree, so felt I kind of needed the work experience on my resume.

    Especially since it was a medical job, where I was responsible for vitals, patient consenting for surgeries, patient teaching etc etc all stuff that looks great experience for a new grad nurse.

    Problem is, I was off the books. And now I am applying for a state hospital, and I know they do all sort of background checks and employment verification.

    With how competitive the job market is, im not really sure how to deal with this.

    My old boss (a surgeon) is writing me a letter of recommendation, and is one of my personnel references but im absolutely terrified about the employment verification process going south and immediately disqualifying me for consideration.

    Any suggestions
  2. 9 Comments so far...

  3. 0
    All you will need is his name, title, the "name of company" you two worked for (if he was just an independent surgeon, the company name would be just his name, and you would say "owner/surgeon" for title), as well as his phone number as they will need to contact him. After all, in private practice this is what you would have for record too. If you are worried about listing "salary" you might say extended internship.

    I'll edit to add that you should use him as a work reference and leave the personal reference for another.
  4. 0
    crap i meant professional reference

    Not personal

    No personal references needed

    You dont think it would be an issue an off the books job though ?

    Especially as im applying for a state job, so idk how crazy they get about things?
  5. 0
    Everything and everybody is weird these days.

    Actually lots of professions have unpaid internships. Of course if it's a state job, chances are high the person looking at your application will have had no education at all and probably won't google "internship" either - well, these days there are idiots everywhere.
  6. 0
    Just curious - you were consenting patients for surgery? Or were you helping to get paperwork together, to fill out paperwork legibly and subsequently witnessing the consent? Consent is the responsibility of the physician or (depending on procedure/training of individual) midlevel practitioner (PA, NP, CRNA).

    I witness consents all the time, I'm an OR RN in a Level I trauma center. But unless I watch the conversation and can as such say for certain the requirements for patient understanding were acheived, I have six questions I have to ask (per my facility policy) to be able to sign there. Unless a consent is witnessed at the time it was signed you have to make sure the patient understands the procedure(s), risks and benefits/alternatives were discussed - etc.

    I certainly don't see an issue with obtaining vitals and patient teaching. I did plenty of that without getting paid . In fact, I paid for the opportunity to do those things in school .

    I agree with the others - list the name of the physician or practice as the employer, dates of employment, list the physician as your supervisor, and provide appropriate contact information - just like you would for any other position. You can include the letter with your materials if asked for an interview.
  7. 0
    Well it was outpatient surgery, so a little bit different from what is done in the hospital im sure.

    Mostly advising them about risks with anesthesia (midazolam and sodium brevitol), and possible risks as well. It was an oral surgeon so nothing was crazy, but some sinus lifts bone grafting kinda thing.

    Usually I would go through it with the patient, then the surgeon himself would answer any other questions they had for him

    Appreciate the advice very much too, thank you !
  8. 0
    Many of my patients are outpatients too, a lot go home the day of surgery after just a few hours. There is a component to state law to consider (laws vary between states), and working at this office you were working under the supervision of the physician, so there is that too. I have to admit, as a floor nurse I did a lot of teaching about all kinds of medications and about procedures themselves - the only questions I couldn't answer on my own (based on facility policy and our state laws were regarding risks/benefits), but again - states have different laws about all kinds of things (I have practiced in 4 different states as an RN, and not in a single one of them is the NPA the same).

    Without knowing the state laws where you live - if it were me in the interviews, I would highlight the "pre-surgical teaching/patient education" and "obtaining/monitoring vitals" if asked in an interview. Not to say you are wrong, but it's the most valuable nuggets from the experience anyways.
  9. 0
    Oh absolutely, I truthfully dont know the laws myself.

    So ill definitely defer to your advice

    Anything I can do to avoid any hiccups.

    Thanks !
  10. 0
    During this background check, they will call your previous employer. Your boss is writing a letter of recommendation but will not vouch for your time worked?
  11. 0
    Just make sure you and your old boss are on the same page if they call him for a reference check. That would be the biggest issue. I've had background checks done (credit report and for employment), and you could easily get by with listing the position you were "hired" as at that position and/or listing it as an extended internship. I truly do not think it will be scrutinized that much, as long as you list the actual job duties you performed that add to your overall experience towards the position in which you are currently applying.


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