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- Apr 18, '12 by elle21I completely understand how you feel. I went into nursing knowing it would be extremely difficult to get a job in a hospital (thanks to this website). But, I did it anyway, lol. I realized it doesn't matter where your first job is. I will find a job somewhere and you will, too. It may be a few years before either one of us is in the place where we want to be, but we're just starting out. I've had nurses in the hospital tell me not to ever go into a long-term care facility because I'll never be able to get an acute care position in a hospital. Well, I could go to an acute care clinic and then to a hospital if that's what I want to do. I will probably end up in a physician's office geting paid less than I used to pay my employees in my previous field. That's okay because it's not forever. Broaden your scope of where you are applying. I'm sure you're thinking that you've applied everywhere, but you haven't. You also haven't been in the right place at the right time. I am taking the summer off because I can't afford daycare for three kids on a nurse's salary, but when I start my job hunt this fall I will make sure the people making the hiring decisions actually see me. I will not count on getting hired by just sending my resume out online. I'm also counting on my nursing school friends that do have jobs for networking. That's how a lot of last year's new grads got hired. As much as some of your classmates irritate the crap out of you, make sure you stay in touch and professional because you just never know!
- Apr 18, '12 by hgrimmettI agree. While I appreciate that it's related to an RN's job, CNA experience should not be mandatory as a hiring requirement. There's this one CNA in my RN-ADN class, currently working as a a CNA in a LTC, and she has a boatload of bad attitudes. Aside from the acrylic nails and big hoop earrings she wears to work AND school (our school doesn't enforce their dress code.. even so, the dean of the program has told her once already to lose the fake nails.. she seems to be ignoring said dean..) This CNA has said in public that the only reason she wants to become an RN is to get paid more money and to be able to tell someone else to go wipe butts.. (currently she has said that she sits -on her butt- and plays with her iPhone most of the night on her 11-7 shift..)
I have my doubts that she will pass the NCLEX but OMG I feel sorry for anyone, co-worker or patient, who has to put up with her, now or in the future.
- If you can relocate, do so. I used the same exact resume in a major metro area HUNDREDS if not over a thousand times and got nothing. Eventually, I gave in -used the same resume and cover letter(altered slightly for the job position) in a different area of the country and got a job and MANY interviews and phone calls. Seriously, it is not just poor resumes or interview skills. In some areas, esp CA, NYC/NJ, other big cities it is an employer's market and they have THOUSANDS of candidtates more qualified than you due to years of experience or big time connections- of course they will most likely take the new grad who was a cna on the floor for 2 years- won't even look at your resume. many places were hiring in house only , would/do not even look at outside candidates- post the position as a facade of some sort to appease some policy. and could do that. they know the employees work ethic,, faster getting the position filled etc.
- Apr 18, '12 by rrockstar88@Anotherone, what part of the country are you in, if you don't mind my asking?
- Use any connection you have no matter how far fetched or shameless. a classmate who knew, to say the least..., a chief golden boy resident for an obscure program like dermatology( rarely saw the med surg floors) vouched for her and she got a job in a big teaching hospital med/surg floor, or someone whose mother worked in dietary- neither of these people were any more skilled then anyone else - do not even remember if either were cnas or not . Not just nurses or HR. but anyone who works in the nursing home/ hospital/healthcare.Maybe even your own dr is affiliated with a large hospital network. who knows. For all you know your neighbor's husband who works in transport is bff with the hiring manager in the icu. it does happen.
- Apr 18, '12 by soozabelI worked as an NA during nursing school (with two small kids, a husband, poor self-esteem and going back to school 20 yrs later) because the local hospital came to our school and told us about the program where you work for them and you'd have preference for jobs when you graduated. Well, that didn't come true, the hospital I worked at as an NA wouldn't hire me because I didn't have RN experience - even though I worked for them for 1 1/2 yrs! I even had a personal contact with the hiring nurse of a particular unit and recommendation from nurses I had worked with, but they wanted only experienced RNs. So, I did the usual searching online, sending resumes with no call backs. Then I got business cards made - inexpensive but professional - got nice paper with matching envelopes for my resumes and kept the resume to one page by taking off some of what I thought was "irrelevant" past work experience and focused on "managerial" type of tasks I had with past jobs. I'd send the business card with the resume and I CALLED back within a week or two after sending my resume and I left messages and I'd keep calling until I actually got to talk to someone. I sent thank you notes after my interviews and even after speaking with someone on the phone. I bought a nice suit - navy, simple lines with a skirt and slacks so I could change it up for the second interview, crisp white ironed blouse. Appearance does matter. You need to look and act professional, not stuffy, but professional and personable. Like others have said, you have to practice being interviewed, you have to know what to say when they ask "tell me a time when you and an employee didn't agree on something" - all those darned "negative" questions. Be prepared and follow through with any leads you get.
Next, you will probably need to find somewhere nontraditional, since the hospitals aren't hiring GNs. Go to job fairs if they have them, if you know friends of friends that could possibly get your resume in, do it and send them thank you notes to people who help you. Where I live, experience was necessary to work in LTC, though I did know several of my classmates that got jobs in that field. I didn't want to work in LTC, but was just about to send a resume because I hadn't had any luck, then I got two interviews, with both offering me jobs. I chose a dialysis clinic over the hospital because of the location and hours. Luckily, I had some leverage (the other job offer) and was even able to get them to up the initial salary offer. That was liberating! I really like working there - almost 3 yrs later. It wasn't a place I would have thought of but I knew someone who had a friend that worked there and I contacted the person I knew and she contacted her friend (who I didn't know) and it got my foot in the door.
You just have to keep with it and be positive. Keep trying, it takes time and lot's of effort, and when you feel like giving up, you just have to keep going. Eventually, all your hard work will develop into something, maybe not what you expected, but somewhere to start. You may end up liking it, if not leave, at least you now have some experience.
Good luck, girlfriend!
- Quote from rrockstar88sorry, i do not want to get too specific for some sake of hiding my identity.lol. but I am from and still in the NE although a couple hundred miles apart from where I was. Some rural areas in the NE are hiring even new grads. doesn't have to be a tiny hospital either, there are some big teaching hospitals in rural or smaller areas, although not as common. no they are not desirable places to live if you are used to boston or nyc and like that, but you can get experience and in a few years apply to those hospitals.@Anotherone, what part of the country are you in, if you don't mind my asking?
- Apr 18, '12 by MN-NurseQuote from Zookeeper44This is a bit of a non sequitur. In my experience, lazy irresponsible CNAs are almost never nursing students.Well I'll just be blunt...some of the CNA's I saw while on the floors in nursing school were laziest most irresponsible people ever.
All the attributes you mention are certainly valuable as a nurse, but you must realize that those that work in healthcare while they are going to school ALSO have those qualities.
Further, all the life skills you pointed out are things someone SHOULD be doing anyway. They still leave the canditate behind someone who works with patients at the facility.
- Apr 19, '12 by MerlynQuote from tcvnurseBut there are other agencies that would.Really? The home health agencies I worked for would never hire anyone without at least one year, and preferred two years of med-surg but at least hospital background. A new grad is not prepared for the numerous things that can go wrong in the home health setting.
I have met and worked with some incredible home health nurses, but I also knew a great many who were terrible nurses, co-dependant with their patients, and just plain didnt know what they were doing.
Having worked in that field for 6 years I would be very very afraid of a graduate nurse who starts in home health.