Quote from betakurt
I graduate in ten months with an ADN degree for a second career in nursing. My previous career was IT. I'd like to get some opinions on whether or not my IT experience (which is fairly extensive) would give me an advantage in getting an informatics position right out of school.
Or would most informatics positions want clinical experience first, regardless of what I know about IT/IS?
Also, if I could jump right into informatics, am I shooting myself in the foot, but not getting the first few years to hone clinical skills?
This is what I have seen happen at 3 different hospitals that were looking for entry level nursing informatics candidates...and remember, I'm saying "nursing informatics" because those specific jobs required nursing clinical experience.
Candidates who had prior IT experience, and had just graduated with a nursing degree were simply overlooked because they had zero clinical experience. Hospitals were specifically looking for somebody who understood clinical workflows and basically every hospital said, "yes, they have IT experience, but if we sent this person to a group of nurses, they have zero credibility, so we're not interested."
With that said, you can always apply for IT hospital jobs that are not specifically geared to nursing, and you might be just fine; for example, colleague I worked with has a computer engineering degree, with a lot of programming experience; he got laid off a few years back from his IT job, and went into nursing. He hadn't even worked 2 months as an RN, when he was offered a job as an interface analyst at his hospital; however, as you know, an interface analyst doesn't require clinical experience.
Nonetheless, if your goal is to specifically work in a job that requires specific nursing clinical experience, the odds might be stacked against you right out of nursing school. However, if you're going for generic jobs that do not require nursing experience, you could be fine. It really comes down to the job requirements. Also many vendors even hire people with zero nursing or IT experience, but these jobs don't get advertised as nursing informatics, but maybe as clinical analyst, software consultant, etc. Just expand your horizons when looking for jobs.
My question is---do you even want to work as a clinical nurse? Or do you want to get a 'computer' job right out of school?