Nurse managers: can I interest you in a new RN grad?

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    Hello,

    I'm posting here in the nurse management forum because I would love to pick some managers' brains regarding hiring new nurse graduates. If this is totally the wrong forum, then by all means, please direct me to a more appropriate one. But I'm hoping you'll share some of your ideas, as many of us new graduates are starving for direction and encouragement in this abysmal economy.

    Here are a few questions:

    1. What do you look for in a new nurse - namely, what sorts of traits really stick out as impressive to you? Think about new RN grads on your respective units...what made you choose them over other candidates?
    2. Will you appreciate my moxie for walking unannounced into the unit and showing you my portfolio?
    3. Do you like unorthodox, creative-without-being-gimmicky cover letters?
    4. Any advice for new RN graduates in this economy?

    Please share your thoughts! I am an RN BSN who graduated in June 2010 and have applied to more positions than you can shake a stick at. That includes out of state jobs. I don't have a CNA license, as I didn't know 4 years ago that it would behoove me to have one. I have a previous career and BA in Anthropology, interesting life experience, and can communicate rather well. Volunteering as an RN is hard to do, as it seems many facilities want you to commit to a year with them...and would leaving a volunteer position early "look good" for me in the long run?

    Just looking for some insight into what else I can do here...I'm at the end of my rope.

    Thank you!
  2. 4 Comments so far...

  3. 0
    so, i'll bite. first of all, i feel your pain. when i graduated, there was a glut of nurses and to get in a hospital you had to "do time" in a nursing home. which is why i joined the navy, which i totally recommend. they only take bsn's and you'll get some great training and experience. now i know not everyone is "cut out" for the military so i'll answer your questions as if you have ruled out the military, va hospitals, etc.



    1. what do you look for in a new nurse - namely, what sorts of traits really stick out as impressive to you? well, a willingness to learn is important, but i usually know right away if it's someone that will work for us. that's not very scientific but i know our staff and our unit and go by instinct on interview. i chose nurses with bsn's here lately because we are a magnet facility and that is one of our goals. if they weren't bsn's, i think i still would have hired them because "we clicked." i know that's not scientific but it works for me.
    2. will you appreciate my moxie for walking unannounced into the unit and showing you my portfolio? no! i have too much stuff going on! go the traditional route. i wouldn't waste time blanketing every hospital with your resume. look for job postings on the hospital website or newspaper or monster. apply for a specific position. if i don't have an opening, showing up on the unit won't create room in the budget for you, you know what i mean? i like that you're thinking "outside the box" and are creative though
    3. do you like unorthodox, creative-without-being-gimmicky cover letters? no, i look at the overall resume and experience. if they have no nursing experience, if they have experience working with kids, even volunteering, i will give them a second glance. but i am a child psych um so if you don't like kids, you shouldn't work here. not sure where an acute care nm would think. do you have hospital volunteer experience? if not, highlight what jobs you have had that are "people-oriented."
    4. any advice for new rn graduates in this economy? keep your chin up. be willing to look out of state (which you are), consider the military, va, peace corps, etc. if you're an rn and you can't find a job anywhere in the us, consider taking an lpn role in a nursing home to "get some experience." it might spice up your resume having some sort of nursing experience. i know that is extreme but unless you have a lot of time, you need to start making some $. read the military forum here on allnurses and pick their brain..the economy will get better, the retirees will go back to retiring and we'll be needy again.
  4. 0
    Thank you, childpsych! I really appreciate your input; I would absolutely work at the VA but they too are only taking new grads that did their immersions there.

    But I'll keep looking...!
  5. 0
    Nice approach, did you get any job leads with this post???
  6. 0
    Quote from childpsych
    so, i'll bite.
    1. what do you look for in a new nurse - namely, what sorts of traits really stick out as impressive to you? well, a willingness to learn is important, but i usually know right away if it's someone that will work for us. that's not very scientific but i know our staff and our unit and go by instinct on interview. i chose nurses with bsn's here lately because we are a magnet facility and that is one of our goals. if they weren't bsn's, i think i still would have hired them because "we clicked." i know that's not scientific but it works for me.
    2. will you appreciate my moxie for walking unannounced into the unit and showing you my portfolio? no! i have too much stuff going on! go the traditional route. i wouldn't waste time blanketing every hospital with your resume. look for job postings on the hospital website or newspaper or monster. apply for a specific position. if i don't have an opening, showing up on the unit won't create room in the budget for you, you know what i mean? i like that you're thinking "outside the box" and are creative though
    3. do you like unorthodox, creative-without-being-gimmicky cover letters? no, i look at the overall resume and experience. if they have no nursing experience, if they have experience working with kids, even volunteering, i will give them a second glance. but i am a child psych um so if you don't like kids, you shouldn't work here. not sure where an acute care nm would think. do you have hospital volunteer experience? if not, highlight what jobs you have had that are "people-oriented."
    4. any advice for new rn graduates in this economy? keep your chin up. be willing to look out of state (which you are), consider the military, va, peace corps, etc. if you're an rn and you can't find a job anywhere in the us, consider taking an lpn role in a nursing home to "get some experience." it might spice up your resume having some sort of nursing experience. i know that is extreme but unless you have a lot of time, you need to start making some $. read the military forum here on allnurses and pick their brain..the economy will get better, the retirees will go back to retiring and we'll be needy again.
    #1- agree completely, but we only hire bsn. this is due to magnet accreditation, and also due to being affiliated with a medical/nursing university

    #2- that's an emphatic no. unless i knew ahead of time that someone i knew was sending you over, i'll spend about 5 minutes with you at the nurses station before courteously wishing you good luck and goodbye.

    #3- probably not. but what i do want is a concise and succinct grammatically correct resume that has been spellchecked. and please don't pad it out by listing every single course,and every single skill learned. if you learned something unique, let me know.

    #4-realize that first job probably won't be your dream job, and you may need to work off shifts. and network, network, network.

    btw, we have at least 7 recent grads (< 1yr), but have had many more applicants than positions for the past few years.

    best of luck to you! hang in there


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