Wants little human interaction- Is this the job for me?

  1. 0
    I am currently an ICU nurse with a background in education. Through my experiences in working with the public, I've established that I just really don't like people all that much. Informatics sounds like it would be a good match for my personality. What percentage is actual screen time, and how much is spent in face-to-face interactions? I wouldn't mind teaching the information to groups or whatever. I'm just tired of having a job that focuses on being a servant and pleasing people who can't be pleased. TIA!

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  2. 12 Comments...

  3. 1
    I was in Information Technology for decades before becoming a nurse. It depends what type of role you play as an NI. For example, if you were to do data analysis you wouldn't have much interaction with others. If you were a software tester you may not have as much interaction with others. If you wrote technical specs for programmers you would interface with the project manager and possibly the programmer. If you were a business analyst you would interface with other clinicians (this is the role where you would probably offer the most as an NI).

    Have you thought of other specialties? I worked 2 years in surgery and that wasn't for me. I went into hospice and I love it. It is very rewarding and it is not free from people demanding things but it is different than being in the hospital. Most often people are grateful you are there. I work some home health too and that is pretty good but I don't like it as much as hospice.
    somenurse likes this.
  4. 0
    I agree with Dottimur above,
    that your interaction with other humans, in the HH or in the hospice areas,
    are not like the hospital, imo.

    In HH, or in hospice, they are generally VERY appreciative of you, of most anything you do, usually very grateful to see you. There is the very occasional crank, but, generally, a crank who does not want nurses in his home, or by his bed, is less likely to continue with HH or with hospice, or asks for different nurse altogether.
    but the typical HH or hospice setting is whole other deal, imo, than what you deal with in a hospital.

    but, i'm not sure what all is included in your dislike of feeling like a "servant", whatever that means to you, *might* still occur in HH or hospice.
  5. 0
    Quote from dottimur
    I was in Information Technology for decades before becoming a nurse. It depends what type of role you play as an NI. For example, if you were to do data analysis you wouldn't have much interaction with others. If you were a software tester you may not have as much interaction with others. If you wrote technical specs for programmers you would interface with the project manager and possibly the programmer. If you were a business analyst you would interface with other clinicians (this is the role where you would probably offer the most as an NI).

    Have you thought of other specialties? I worked 2 years in surgery and that wasn't for me. I went into hospice and I love it. It is very rewarding and it is not free from people demanding things but it is different than being in the hospital. Most often people are grateful you are there. I work some home health too and that is pretty good but I don't like it as much as hospice.
    Thanks for your perspective. From what you've described, Informatics sounds perfect for me actually. I earned my BSN in 96 and spent the last 9 years as a public school teacher. I reentered nursing knowing I would eventually steer toward a non clinical role. I'm just doing my allotted time at the bedside to get that all-important experience to be able to take it to the next level.
  6. 0
    Question for your, are you contemplating going into Nursing Informatics or a more technical type role?
    I've been in Nursing Informatics since 2001. I have times of minimal contact and times of lots of contact with other people. The days of minimal contact are rare and far in between. I've been a nurse for 40 years this year. I worked 27 of them at the bedside. I currently work primarily with CPOE and part of the time assist with Pharmacy application. I have to say interaction is quite important in our job. We educate, we test, we plan, we use our nursing knowledge every day. We discuss work flow, discuss issues, help end users, discuss and bounce ideas off our co-workers and other people using the same applications you do. I love to build. That is my forte. I like to teach and can do a good job at it. I am fortunate that I was able to get into this profession without a degree and have worked at two facilities. I work on the hospital side. The ambulatory nurses working with the EHR are constantly busy with the same roles interactions as above. The end users are our customers and we need to be responsive to them. Be it building, helping, logging issues, educating....what ever is needed.
    Now if you plan on going to a technical type job writing code etc, you could probably have minimal interaction, however there are always meetings, planning sessions, testing, re writes etc,, what little I know of it!
    I wish you luck in finding what you are looking for. Nursing Informatics in a hospital setting is full of interactions. Some people love it, some hate it. One thought I just had, if you know a particular system very well you could possibly do some of their build from your home. Just a thought that I don't know much about. Again, good luck!
  7. 0
    Debbie makes very good points. Every job has its ups and its downs. In NI you would not have interaction with demanding families but you would have other rewards and other stressors too.
  8. 0
    I have been in the field of informatics only 7 years or so, but been through many roles: tester, implementer, trainer, data analyst, builder, etc. Of these 7 years, I can't think of one role where I was stuck to the computer the whole day and didn't interact with anybody.

    Probably as a builder there were times where I was given stuff to do and I probably went at most 2 days without talking to anybody as I was busy building, but believe me, those days are few far in between because when the build is done, other stuff happens that require you to get involved with others. Or many times you have others seeking you out for help or a problem comes up in prod and now you have to leave everything behind help with that...

    I'm amused at dottimur's response that as a software tester you don't have much interaction with others. I suppose that depends on how the employer organizes testing, but when I used to do it, I would have a software team lead who would assigned testing and many times my testing led me to interact with others, specially when you do integration testing and you come across problems.

    Also, when bugs were found, I would have to work with a developer or team of developers to help out in fixing the bug and I found out that talking to developers isn't the "funnest" job out there, specially when developers think that as a nurse, you don't know much about programming. Thank god I have done some minor programming in the past so my developers were cool with me, but others nurses weren't so lucky.

    But in the past 7 years I can't think of one role where I was a loner who didn't have much interaction with others. If you're thinking that nursing informatics is going to give you an avenue where you don't interact much with others, I think you'll be in for a nice surprise.
  9. 1
    Quote from krnpynmlr
    I am currently an ICU nurse with a background in education. Through my experiences in working with the public, I've established that I just really don't like people all that much. Informatics sounds like it would be a good match for my personality. What percentage is actual screen time, and how much is spent in face-to-face interactions? I wouldn't mind teaching the information to groups or whatever. I'm just tired of having a job that focuses on being a servant and pleasing people who can't be pleased. TIA!
    No matter where you work, if you have to work as part of a team (in whatever capacity), and you most likely will, you have to have excellent interpersonal skills.

    Currently witnessing a conflict between two clinical analysts in my department - the tension in the air is thick enough to be cut with a knife - and even though I have no part in it, I must say it has affected my morale and my job-satisfaction.

    Just saying that you have to put up with people everywhere - and there isn't a single place where everyone is considerate of everyone else.
    Debbie Gring likes this.
  10. 0
    Hey, I hate people too, so I went into telephonic case management. Instead of running my butt off and talking to people face to face all day, I sit in a little office and call post-discharge patients and do pre-op assessments all day. Each call has a script, I listen to answers, document the SOAP and my impressions, communicate with docs and specialists, all over email and phone. It's not ZERO contact with humanity, but it's very detached. Way less stress and much better use of my nursing theory and critical thinking skills.
  11. 0
    Quote from Jean Marie46514
    I agree with Dottimur above,
    that your interaction with other humans, in the HH or in the hospice areas,
    are not like the hospital, imo.

    In HH, or in hospice, they are generally VERY appreciative of you, of most anything you do, usually very grateful to see you. There is the very occasional crank, but, generally, a crank who does not want nurses in his home, or by his bed, is less likely to continue with HH or with hospice, or asks for different nurse altogether.
    but the typical HH or hospice setting is whole other deal, imo, than what you deal with in a hospital.

    but, i'm not sure what all is included in your dislike of feeling like a "servant", whatever that means to you, *might* still occur in HH or hospice.
    I have also heard the same from hospice nurses who have worked in other specialties - my imagination is that it's definitely different from other settings.


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